I thought that I would take a break from recording for a short time – but then I saw a talking stick in my mind’s eye. I am not sure where I heard about the lore of the talking stick; many cultures have employed something like it. The possession of the talking stick gives a council member the right to speak uninterrupted until the stick is passed to the next member. Possession of the stick is also said to empower the holder with the gift of clear communication.
Maybe because my brother was visiting me this year again and I was hoping to chat with him quietly heart-to-heart. There is no one in my life left who knew me as a boy; all of those friends are gone, and prematurely so. And although his visit was better in this regard than last year’s hotly delivered political opinions, I thought that maybe next year I will have a talking stick ready. Then maybe the ritual will let us shed the topical and experience the essential. That may be a tall order in an election year.
So I therefore have the working-title for the next flute project: “Talking Stick.” In this album, I will use the Native American style flute to scrape the surface of my personality away and attempt to get to my deepest feelings. I will use some orchestration, but minimally as a balm to a burn.
Typically, when I start a new project, I try to find or make an image that inspires me during the recording phase of the work. In this case, on a rainy day in the monsoon season of Arizona, I found a rattle made by Judy Derosa of Yosemite, and placed it on a sacred textile that was made in Peru and used for the Despacho ceremony. The Despacho is the shamanic ceremony of the Q’ero, the modern day Inca that is intended to bring balance into one’s life. The image that I made is shown below:
Which becomes this:
To begin the album, I used an EZ-Anasazi flute in the key of A made by my friend and master musician and craftsman, Stephen Deruby. You can hear the unnamed first track of this as-yet unreleased album by clicking here.
When I record for this album, I am hoping that the melodies will track directly to my heart and clear it so that I may play clearly, without artifice. I hope you enjoy it.