Kula Shaker Biography
This Alternative-Rock band started off in 1993 as a quartet called The Kays with vocalist+guitarist Crispian Mills, organist Jay Darlington, bassist Alonza Bevan and drummer Paul Winter-Hart. Taking their name from a 9th-century Indian King, Kula Shaker quickly received a deal from Columbia Records in 1995.
Their debut album, "K" further reveals their obsession with
Eastern mysticism, the band sing in Sanskrit on the U.K. top 5 smash "Tattva"
and anothet top 10 hit, "Govinda" is based on an ancient Indian
chant. On the strength of these and other hit singles, the band were voted
Best Newcomers at the 1996 Brit Awards and "K" went into the
U.K. Pop Albums chart at #1, the fastest selling debut since Oasis'
"Definitely Maybe". The disc also made its way into the American
Billboard Top 200 and "Tattva" hit the #10 position on The Modern
Rock Tracks; the second U.S. single, "Hey Dude", was another
Modern Rock top 30 hit for the band.
In February 1997 Kula Shaker released a cover of Joe South's "Hush", the single achieved a career-best peak of #2 on the British Pop chart.
But their star waned pretty quickly when singer Crispian Mills bafflingly started talking about Hitler and suggested that he wanted “burning swastikas on stage”. Despite a statement hurriedly insisting that the hapless quasi-mystic was referring to the swastika as an “ancient Indian symbol”, people voted with their feet. Kula Shaker eventually blasted into the U.K. top 3 in May 1998 with the single "Sound Of Drums", the track was subsequently included on the band's second album, "Peasants, Pigs & Astronauts", which saw the light of day one year later, in June 1999, but failed to match its predecessor's sales.
It wasn't until late 2006 when Mills asked original members Bevan and Winter-Hart to try out a song he was working on, that they found themselves back in the same room together. Recruiting keyboard maestro Harry B. Broadbent to complete the line-up the band set about rekindling their musical fire and in August 2007 the group released a new album titled "Strangefolk".