November 2018
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David Klein Trio at UnUrban Cafe

Unurban

The Source of Creativity is within all of us

The Source of Creativity is within all of us.
When we find our source it gives us nourishment. It frees us from ourselves. All cultures have names for this energy of life. Some divine, some not so inspired. But it exists and we have it as a tool for our own survival. When we lose ourselves in our own creativity we are not distracted by our Critical Mind which worries about things-all the time.
Media today is intent and focused on distracting us. They’re good at it. Targeting the Critical Mind is easy. It is a mechanism that evolved. It is not conscious. It is programmed using rhythm. i.e. commercial soundtracks; Repetition creates belief. This is one of our weak spots. Maybe the Critical Mind was not intended to run the whole show like it thinks it is supposed to.
Rhythm can slow down and even shut off this obsessiveness. The Critical Mind engages with rhythm and will believe what is being sold. Why don’t we sell ourselves on ourselves? Drumming affirmations work well using the inherent rhythmic susceptibility of our belief system.
Critical Mind has expanded, taken over sections of the unused brain pan, tricked into trying to stay in control, while drum machines create a world of unforgiving fear. What ever the reasons for its sudden expansion we need to get it under control or it will eat us alive.
When I see the data flow input for people, I am amazed they are still standing. Paranoid focus on their device cuts out the world and their own lives. The illusion is that there is life in the data feed. Not quite.
This hustle is sold and bought by everyone because of an inherent susceptibility in the Critical Mind; it goes into synch with whatever rhythm it feels at that moment. Thats how you sell toothpaste, shoes, cars and tampons. The right groove and they’ll buy anything. We can’t help it. We’re rhythmic animals.
People’s survival alarms are ringing all the time because we cannot keep up with the speed of the data flow. Anxiety increases for no explainable reason. Conventional meditation does not always work in this culture. We are “doers”. We have to be active. We are not passive.
Group drumming and individual drum therapy are showing good results as an addiction treatment, also anxiety and depression. The addiction is often with Dopamine. This endorphin appears in our brains when we get a “like” or a “comment”. This is a microtonal high that trains the brain to want more. In drumming we substitute endorphins with Oxytocin. This is a bonding chemical as well as other mysterious effects. Musicians share it as well as mothers with newborns.
Creativity in drumming is relatively easy and safe. Just get into a groove. Support the low tone downbeat and add a few high notes out at the edge. Step away from the madness  and dance.

House of the Rising Sun

“House of the Rising Sun” was possibly originally sung by a woman to her younger sister, admonishing her to stay away from New Orleans. The version of the song by Odetta is close to the original intent of the song. Nina Simone’s version is unique and righteous – maybe because she heard the Animals version and wanted the world to know the song’s true origin. Words were changed to make it a “male” oriented song which ended up with Eric Burdon and the Animals British version. Which is a great version creating the cascading chord structure that is now part of the song’s heritage. There are many different verses. Woody Guthrie was one of the first people to sing the song. Bob Dylan did several versions. But the version by Dave Van Ronk is touching. He was one of the original folk singers in Greenwich Village in the early sixties. It was a frugal existence but he was a dedicated folkie. He had discovered the forgotten song and fashioned a very personal arrangement, with his intense vocal style of moans and gasps. LIttle Bobby Dylan had just arrived in the Big Apple and heard Van Ronk’s version. It was to be on Bob Dylan’s first album on Columbia. Dave claimed that Bob had lifted his version.
The original is probably in the key of A minor. Odetta brings it up to B flat minor and adds some jazz chords. Bob Dylan uses only two chords on one version. It is a cyclical chord progression in that it does not have a separate bridge or verse chorus. House of the Rising Sun can be repeated as a progression to improvise over if you are feeling adventurous.

Who’s your Nanny?

Turkey patties with celery garlic cilantro cumin and onion granules
Atop jasmine rice, steamed baby
Bok choy and zucchini!

Chicken and cheese tamale chunks on top of yellow squash and zucchini with Parmesan and tomatillo 💃🏻 salsa.

I Don’t Have to Be Hard On Myself

Charlie Dechant Alto Flute

Charlie Dechant

Old Friends never stop playing music together since 1969. He has played sax, keyboards, vocals with Hall and Oates 42 years. They sold out the Forum once again.

3rd edition of Let the Goddess Dance Drumming the Spirit to Life

Lily on 3rd Edition reprint of the first book about drumming, with its original title, a few more insights and prologue about why I wrote the book in 1998. It is available* for readers to purchase here.

Keep your Light Up