Born in Ohio, raised in Ohio. High school in Springfield, Oh, the bible belt, aka the corn belt, was me listening to CSNY, Eric Clapton, and Santana, reading JRR Tolkien 3 times, and looking around with the feeling, yes there really must be something else, to quote Carlos’s book title, a separate reality.
1973-1977 Otterbein College
theater major, voice lessons, fencing.
vocal trio doing covers of CSNY Read Castenada’s “Journey to Ixtlan” and everything changed.
1978-1979 Florida State U. Acting Conservatory
In Sarasota going for a masters of fine arts degree in acting at Florida University’s Actors’ Conservatory in Sarasota, I picked up a book by (then) Bhagwan Rajneesh, now Osho- and within a year was traveling to India, whether Castenada knew it or not, that’s the real separate reality. I think everyone should live in a third world country for a while.
1979, 1986-89, 1990-95 Pune, India
In the ashram in India I started making music for meditations, learning to use sound as a container for the soundless, for silence. Nothing better, it changed everything I knew about music. Still is. I met Chinmaya, we composed and performed the tracks that ended up being “Celtic Ragas”, then went on to do Indo Reel on my own, then composed INFUSION, worked with first Kit Walker, then Nitin Joshi, and released that CD (see below).
August 1999 Celtic Ragas CD
Label: New Earth Records
2002 Indo Reel
Label: Sublime Dezine Records
Paul McCartney’s agent called New Earth up, and asked if we could play Celtic Ragas at his wedding. We did.
2009, Pune India again
Met Nitin Joshi at Sound Ideaz in Pune, who was able to finish the INFUSION mixing which was all over the place, and did a perfect job. So with INFUSION, I asked a bunch of people to record, and they all said yes. I’m working with a collection of experienced musicians in the studio, Talia, Ashik, Kit, everyone’s got a lot of experience on the stage as well. I’m really happy with how it turned out for this album.
September 2011 INFUSION: the Prodigal Son Returns
The sarod (right) is a fretless instrument that looks a bit like a banjo and has something like 5 main strings and 18 harmonic strings. Praashekh playing the sarod definitely adds something to the mix very alive, exotic, and also totally drives and is original. I mean there’s Jai Uttal doing some great stuff, but that’s really a Westerner playing the instrument, and that’s just a different feeling.
All Along the Watchtower: a Matrix-like inference of the first line “There must be some way out of here…” as if the Joker were a version of Neo looking to get out of the Matrix. Which is kind of what it’s all about. Not about getting out, but about going IN.
Now, I’m focusing on the country sound that’s a big part of my background, kind of going back to roots. Prodigal Son is a good start, and now working on “We Will Abide.” Working with pedal steel guitar instead of the sarod, I guess it’s gonna be a bit more accessible to my peers here in the States. lol.