Wilton native earns Grammy nomination for best New Age album

New Age musician and Redding resident Paul Avgerinos had a busy day Monday, answering more than 400 emails congratulating him on his nomination over the weekend for a Grammy award.

“I felt I had to give each one an individual response,” he said, taking a break from all the typing.

Mr. Avgerinos, who grew up in Wilton, was nominated for Best New Age Album for his latest CD, Bhakti, which is an exploration of yoga and Christian themes over an Indian music-type merger of acoustic and electric instruments with synthesizers. The album was released last September by Mr. Avgerinos’s independent label, Round Sky Music, and is available on iTunes and Amazon.

The 57th Grammy Awards will be held on Feb. 8 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, Calif., and broadcast live on television by CBS.

The news of who the nominees were first got out last Saturday, and by Monday morning Mr. Avgerinos had an inbox full of friendly notes. He spent the day responding to his friends, who include the parishioners of Christ Church Episcopal Parish.

“Absolutely, we are so happy for him,” said Marilyn Anderson, rector of Christ Church Parish.

It was there that Mr. Avgerinos said he honed the singing voice that he features on his latest album, which is a departure from the many albums he has made that feature only his instrumental talents. His deep baritone voice figures on such songs as Hare Jesu, a devotional song to Jesus Christ.

“I’ve practiced yoga since ’74, and followed a spiritual path of yoga, and this album combines the Indian love and devotion with the Christian love and spirituality,” said Mr. Avgerinos, who is now 57. “The message of the album is of unconditional love and devotion for God, all creatures, and all beings.”

He believes it is appropriate to see his pure message being validated by the significant nomination.

“When I win, my acceptance speech will probably be the first to contain Sanskrit words,” he said, referring to the language of yoga. “I’m very grateful and humbled and thrilled to be able to carry this banner a little higher, to reach more people. That’s why we do it all.”

This latest album combines Indian sitar, sarod, bansuri flute, and violin with EWI, nylon guitar, groovy Bollywood beats, and Christian Sanskrit mantras.

Mr. Avgerinos wrote all the music. The lineup of musicians includes Mr. Avgerinos on vocals, on bass, nylon, steel, 12-string, and echo slide guitars, on keyboards and on sound design.

It also features Camila Celin on sarod; Kevin Braheny Fortune on EWI; Steve Gorn on bansuri flute; Dayashila, angelic diva of AH and OM; Neel Murgai on sitar; Arun Ramamurthy on violin; and Christine Yandell, angelic vocals.

The album was recorded at Mr. Avgerinos’s studio in his home, known as the Studio Unicorn. That is where he earns his living recording and producing albums for other artists, as well as creating soundtrack music for television and film. His New Age albums are the icing on his creative cake.

He has been nominated for a Grammy before, for his work on others’ records, but this is the first nomination in his own right.

“The award is just a confirmation that were doing the right thing doing our work,” Mr. Avgerinos said, “and it helps us to reach more people with this joyful message of a little more love and less sadness.”