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Katie Wise + Bhakti Explosion is a kirtan band fusing heart-opening mantra with contemporary folk.

Formed in 2014 when yoga teacher, comedian, and classically trained pianist Katie Wise combined her passions into leading kirtan (mantra chanting), Bhakti Explosion currently includes Katie on lead vocals, acoustic guitar, and keyboards; harmony vocalist and bass player John Hoelle (Pro Audio); drummer JJ Jones (Girlyman); and lead guitarist Yoshi Aono (Acoustic Junction). The band has appeared at some of the the biggest yoga and transformational music festivals in the US and internationally, such as Bhakti Fest (CA), Rocky Mountain Folks Fest (CO), Hanuman Festival (CO), Holistic Manchester (UK), Arise (CO), Festival of Colors USA (UT), Mammoth Yoga Festival (CA), Shakti Fest (CA), Bhakti Love Reunion (CA), Lovelight (MD), Stonehenge Music Festival (UK), and Unify (NM). Bhakti Explosion has toured and recorded with David Newman, and has shared the stage with and backed up artists such as Donna DeLory, Girish, Brenda McMorrow, Wah, Sean Johnson & the Wild Lotus Band, Guru Ganesha Singh, Deva Premal and Miten, Saul David Raye, Daphne Tse and many others. 

Their debut album, Lovolution, produced by Grammy-nominee Ben Leinbach and featuring guest vocals by Jai Uttal, has received acclaim in the US (Yoga Journal, Yoga International), UK (Kindred Spirit, Yoga Magazine) and Australia (Soul Traveller Radio, and Australian Yoga Life). They’ve also released two live albums: Live at the Starhouse (2019), and Live at eTown (2021) from their sold out show at eTown Hall. Their second studio album, Akashic Rock, was released in 2023 on White Swan Records.

The band continues to look for ways to serve the greater community through music, through livestreams, and benefit concerts like #BoulderStrong, Yoga Gives Back for India, and concert.

David Newman calls Katie "a solid force and presence for those who look to their music for peace, heart, groove, and spiritual inspiration.” Australian Yoga life writes “Wise’s soulful, earthy voice embodies vulnerability in a way that turns emotion into art.” More at



Artist Information

Genre: Contemporary Folk / Kirtan / Rock


Hometown: Boulder, CO


Influences: Trevor Hall, Jai Uttal, Deva Premal


Sounds Like: Sarah McLachlan, Rising Appalachia, Cowboy Junkies 

Event Descriptions



Katie Wise & Bhakti Explosion Sampler Reel

Katie Wise & Bhakti Explosion Sampler Reel
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Katie Wise & Bhakti Explosion Sampler Reel

Katie Wise & Bhakti Explosion Sampler Reel

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Kali Kayeh (live at eTown)

Kali Kayeh (live at eTown)

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Hey Ma Durga (radio edit) - Katie Wise & Bhakti Explosion

Hey Ma Durga (radio edit) - Katie Wise & Bhakti Explosion

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Katie Wise & Bhakti Explosion - Sweet Music

Katie Wise & Bhakti Explosion - Sweet Music

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Press coverage

Yoga Magazine printed Katie's article on how kirtan curbed her life-long anxiety, in the April 2018 issue, page 24.

"The Bay Area's Magazine for Conscious Community since 1974" reviewed the album in the October 2017 issue page 40).

Australian Yoga Life

"Australia's longest running yoga magazine" reviewed the album in the summer 2017 issue.

Whole Life Times

Review in Whole Life Times, published in Apr/May 2017 issue.

Yoga Magzaine (UK)

Yoga Magazine (UK) reviewed the album in May 2017 issue.