|Origin||Michigan, United States|
|Years active||2002 – present|
|Labels||Pahan Silu Entertainment|
Pahan Silu (which roughly translates to "dancing candlelight" from its original Sinhala, one of the three primary languages spoken on the island of Sri Lanka) is the name of a band formed in late 2002 by American-born musician Priyan Weerappuli.
Pahan Silu began performing publicly at the April 2003 Sri Lankan New Year celebration held in Detroit, Michigan, and within two years, had begun performing their original compositions alongside those of classically trained Sri Lankan musicians - including Sangeet Nipun Sanath Nandasiri during his 2005 tour of the United States. In addition to Nandasiri, they have also performed with Walter Fernando (brother of the late baila singer M.S. Fernando), and female vocalist Malkanthi Nandasiri, during their tours of the United States.
The success Pahan Silu has enjoyed in recent years is owed primarily to the unique sound they have introduced to Sri Lankan music. In an era when many Sri Lankan performers (including pop-R&B duo Bathiya and Santhush) have drawn influence from urban and techno musicians in England and the United States, Pahan Silu turned, instead, to the rich, blended, harmonies of African music, and the acoustic rhythms of Latin American music.
Their first single, "Siripāda", a song recounting the story of a group of friends who climb to the top of Srī Pāda (also referred to as Adam's Peak) thru its dense pre-dawn fog, debuted on March 10, 2007 on The Asian Broadcasting Company's Sri Lankan affiliate Hiru FM.
Their second single, "Mīrayèn Èha Thalè", a song which describes Priyan's memory of the 2000 concert given by Pandith Amaradeva in the US, debuted on December 2, 2007 simultaneously on both the BBC and SLBC.
In December 2008, Pahan Silu collaborated with the Sudanese Gospel Choir to perform in a special edition of SirasaTV's "Looks Like" program broadcast in early 2009 which included the premier of their single "Yala".
Among others, founding member Priyan Weerappuli credits Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Sting, Papa Wemba, Pandith Amaradeva, John Denver, Clarence Wijewardane, James Taylor, Carlos Vives, Juanes and Aventura as the influences behind Pahan Silu's sound.
Dayani's Theme (Weerappuli 2007)
Siripāda (S.Fernando/Weerappuli 2007)
Mīrayèn Èha Thalè (Weerappuli 2007)
Mihirakī Oba (Kannangara/Weerappuli 2008)
Yala (Weerappuli 2009)
Gamanak Yanowa (Weerappuli 2011)
Iura Dhige (Weerappuli/Jayasekera 2011)
Lelena Pahan Silu (Weerappuli 2012)
- The name "Pahan Silu" was given to the group by Priyan's father, and was drawn from a passage in the "Guttila" story written by Vàeththàeve Himi - later incorporated into the song "Ru Rase Andhina Lese" by lyricist Sisira Sénaratne.
- Priyan composed the music for the song "Siripada" based on his memory of a hike upon Virginia's "Old Rag Mountain" - he has yet to visit Sri Lanka's fabled peak.
- The song "Mīrayèn Èha Thalè" was written by Priyan for a BBC tribute celebrating the 80th birthday of Sri Lankan artist Pandith W. D. Amaradeva.
- The song "Yala" was written about a hike Priyan took in the Blue Ridge Mountains of northern Virginia - he has yet to visit Sri Lanka's famed national park.
Members (In Alphabetical Order)
Current Members (In Alphabetical Order)
Venura Jayasekera (Acoustic Guitar, Bass Guitar, Keyboard, Vocals)
Shirantha Kannangara (Vocals)
Pramod Nugaliyadda (Sound Engineer)
Lochana Talagala (Acoustic Guitar, Bass Guitar)
Priyan Weerappuli (Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Bass Guitar, Keyboard, Percussion, Thammátama, Vocals)
Guest Performers (In Alphabetical Order)
Umanga deSilva (Acoustic Guitar, Vocals)
Jacob Falk (Djembe, Congas)
Brian Rishi Fernando (Acoustic Guitar)
Shripal Fernando (Vocals)
Praveen Fernandopulle (Vocals)
Chinthana Herath (Flute, Violin)
K. Jayawardene (Tabla)
Ruwan Jayaweera (Vocals)
Samadhi Liyanage (Vocals)
Chandratilaka Liyanarachchi (Vocals)
Deepthi Weerappuli (Keyboard)
Sujit Weerasinghe (Percussion)
Alumni (In Alphabetical Order)
Sanjaya Abeysirigunawardena (Vocals)
Chinthaka Weerappuli (Tabla)
External Links and Sources
- Pahan Silu Instrumentals on Sinhala Jukebox
- BBC Broadcast Link for the Himaw Arana program that featured the music of Pahan Silu.