Subway Bhaktis – the story

Subway Bhaktis are Rachel Zinman and Nyck Jeanes with producer and musician Kamal Engels (just nominated for the 2011 GRAMMY AWARDS!)

Rachel and Nyck are based in Byron Bay, Australia, where their albums were recorded, but these chants and songs were first conceived when they were living in New York City from 2000 – 2004.

Rachel was teaching ISHTA yoga in NYC and as part of her studies discovered the joys of chanting. She would often practice mantras in the subways – commuting to and fro beneath the city making up melodies to help her remember them. At home with harmonium and guitar these chants became musical pieces.

In 2003 their friend, music producer Kamal Engels, came and stayed in New York. They shared some music; some laughs, and acted as his tour guide.

Over the next year they were writing tunes, singing chants, and riding a lot of trains. They began doing Kirtans and people wanted recordings. Then in September 2004 Rachel and Nyck moved back to Australia via Sri Lanka, where music seemed to flow freely. By early 2005 they were pretty determined to record these chants written on the subways and their Brooklyn apartment; in the coconut breezes of Sri Lanka and Belize; and in the wide green backyards of Byron Bay. Kamal was more than ready to help the manifestation and so the Subway Bhaktis were born. Sita Ram was finished in 2006, One Drop of Love in 2009, and Rasa Lila in 2010.

Rachel Zinman

Rachel is a professional dancer, choreographer, award-winning musician and published poet. She was born into a musical family. Her father David Zinman is a Grammy-award winning symphony conductor.
Rachel has practiced yoga for 26 years and taught for 20. In Australia she trained in both the Iyengar and Astanga methods, teaching yoga at the Northern Rivers Conservatorium in New South Wales, where she was Head of Dance. She also co-created and produced a popular Australian Yoga Video series, and a Kid’s Yoga Video.
Rachel met ISHTA yoga founder Alan Finger in New York City in 2000 and taught at his studio Be Yoga for four years. While there she was the co-creator, coordinator and one of the facilitators and mentors in the Be Yoga Teacher Training Program and as part of that program began to learn and understand the power of mantra chanting.
Rachel returned to Australia in September 2004 and is currently facilitating workshops, retreats and trainings in Australia, Bali, India, Japan, Europe and America. In 2006 she began practicing Bhakti Yoga and has incorporated Yantra, Mantra, Mudra and Tantric rituals into her workshops and trainings. Rachel¹s deep personal experience and investigation of meditation allows her to be both intuitive and creative in her work and she feels grateful to be able to share her passion with others.

Nyck Jeanes

Nyck has been a radio broadcaster on Bay FM radio in Byron Bay and magazine editor and publisher of Be Magazine in Byron. He has also been a musician and songwriter all his life. Nyck has been an actor, café proprietor, writer, journalist, and poet. As a musician Nyck wrote documentary soundtracks for ABC Australia and Channel 4 in Britain, and performed in duos, bands and theatre work for many years.
Currently he is also the Australian Producer of the transformational work known as Path of Love.
Chanting came into Nyck‘s life through Rachel while they lived in New York. At home Nyck took some of the mantras and ideas Rachel brought home and together they created the musical pieces, which have resulted in these beautiful albums.

Kamal Engels

As a classical guitarist studying at the Robert Schuhmann Conservatory in Dusseldorf, Germany, Kamal soon felt constricted by the limitations of classical music. He took up bass guitar and played in a variety of jazz and rock bands, always aware that he had jet to develop his unique style and sound. After years of band work, in 1984 Kamal discovered synthesisers and sequencers. His experiments excited him as he realised that he could develop complex instrumentation and arrangements using this new technology. The first album created, “Silhouette”, was published with Nightingale Records and became an instant “New Age Classic”.

Kamal’s subsequent music has sold over 550.000 CD’s worldwide with titles published on more than 450.000 compilations and samplers Main markets: US, Europe, Asia, Japan.

Owner of Studio Services P/L., Australia (since 1995) a production company with recording studio. Under the umbrella of Studio Services the company ArtOfAudio-Mastering was established to create a more specific vehicle for high quality cd-mastering.

Music Awards

“Dolphin Award” of the Australian Entertainment Industry NCEIA

1995 Best Production (Wintersdream)

1995 Best World Music (Mosamba)

1995 Producer of Best Male Vocal (Mission)

1995 Finalist for Best Song of the Year (Wintersdream)

1997 Best Ambient-New Age Music (Papillon)

1998 Best Ambient-New Age Music (Shakuhaji Tales)

1999 Finalist for Best Meditation-Healing Album “Shamanic Healing” ”NAV Music Award” of the American Music Industry

2001 Best Ambient-New Age Music (Enchanted World)

2001 Best Production (Baby Baby)

2002 Finalist for Best Meditation-Healing Album “Reiki Whale Song” ”NAV Music Award” of the American Music Industry

2004 Best Ambient/New Age (The Yearning/Reiki Whale Dreaming)

2004 Best World Music (Tribal Trance Dance with Ariel)

2006 Best Production/Engineering (Subway Bhaktis/Sita Ram/producer)

2006 Best Devotional Music (Subway Bhaktis/Sita Ram/producer)

Successful release of 21 original CD productions in the New Age market

Complete production: composition, arrangement, recording, programming, engineering, mastering.

Instruments played: keyboard, bass, guitar, and percussion