Vidya shares her deeply personal third album ‘Adi Shakti’. Inspired by profound loss and spiritual rebirth

"After experiencing great loss by losing my two mothers, the poem suddenly came back to me in an instant flash I realised this field is actually a space of freedom"
6 June 2024

Vidya-Liselotte Sundberg, widely known as ‘Vidya’, unveils her third studio album, Adi Shakti, released via Prophone Records. This album is a poignant exploration of profound loss and spiritual awakening, inspired by her personal journey of finding, then losing, her biological Indian mother and the subsequent death of her adopted Swedish mother in 2022. Following the vibe of her stunning second album Papillon, Adi Shakti delves deeper into Vidya’s quest for identity and meaning.

The title Adi Shakti is derived from the Hindu mantra meaning Primal Power. This mantra, embodying feminine divine energy, merges the material world with the life-giving, motherly energy that creates all things. It was this powerful concept, alongside a moving poem by the 13th-century Persian scholar and mystic Rumi, that became the cornerstone of Vidya’s new music. The Rumi poem reads:

Out beyond ideas of right doing and wrong doing there is a field, I’ll meet you there. When the soul lies down on that grass the world is too full to talk about.

Vidya discovered this poem in her twenties, and it resonated deeply with her, especially after her personal tragedies. She describes an epiphany where the poem’s imagery of a field became a symbol of freedom and possibility, a place beyond worldly pain and loss. Vidya explains, “I discovered the Rumi poem in my twenties and after that it circulated in my memory for many years. After experiencing great loss by losing my two mothers, the poem suddenly came back to me in an instant flash I realised this field is actually a space of freedom…The Adi Shakta mantra keeps the door open to it and from that discovery music started to pour out…” 

Born in Pune, India, and raised in Gävle, Sweden, Vidya honed her musical talents at the University of Gothenburg. Her debut album Peace Play garnered praise from Swedish music critics and major publications like Dagens Nyheter. Her second album Papillon achieved international acclaim and was nominated for the prestigious Manifest Prize.

Adi Shakti,features a stellar lineup of musicians, including the exceptionally talented guitarist Rob Luft, bassist Magnus Bergström, drummer Jon Fält, and additional vocals from Lisa Rydberg. Their dynamic synergy shines throughout the recording, creating a rich tapestry of Nordic jazz textures and inventive rocky grooves.

Rob and Vidya

Rob Luft, an award-winning jazz guitarist from London, praised Vidya’s collaborative spirit and creative freedom. He expressed, “Co-composing a piece with Vidya and playing on this album was a real pleasure and a privilege. She’s a hugely talented singer-songwriter and I particularly love the way in which she has given each player huge amounts of musical freedom on this record. There’s ample space for master improvisers Jon Fält & Magnus Bergström to create inventive Nordic jazz textures and rocky grooves, and my own musical voice is ever-present from start to finish.

Vidya’s unique blend of cultural influences and her deeply personal experiences infuse Adi Shakti with an authenticity and emotional depth that is both compelling and inspirational. Recorded at Salt Studio in Gävle and produced by Jon Fält, the album’s meticulous mixing by Åke Linton and mastering by Claes Persson ensure a sonic quality that matches its profound thematic content.

Adi Shakti is a celebration of Vidya’s artistic journey and a testament to her resilience and creative brilliance.