"The highest form of maturity is self-inquiry."
- Martin Luther King, Jr.
"The more powerful and original a mind, the more it will incline toward the religion of solitude."
- Aldous Huxley
Already a CDBaby "Editor's Pick" in the category of New Age: Energy Healing.
As an alternative to the ubiquitous instructional yoga DVD, which requires that your environment be equipped with a television or computer, this unique yoga CD is a completely auditory session, which allows the versatility of practicing yoga anywhere you can take a boom box. Singer/songwriter Angela Carole Brown, who has already established her voice from two decades in the music business and through her experimental folk and jazz recordings, has also been a student and practitioner of the Hatha, Kundalini, and Vinyasa yoga disciplines, as well as Pranayama (breath work), for 17 years. The decision to develop and produce this CD came out of her own needs as a yoga consumer. As far as she could find, there were few, if any, yoga CDs. They were all DVDs, where you have a visual instructor in front of you, as you would in a class. But what if you want to be able to close your eyes and go even deeper within? Difficult to do when you keep having to look up at a TV screen, sometimes in the middle of a challenging asana, to see what the teacher is doing next. Angela quickly discovered that CDs were not considered advantageous because it seems to be the consensus that people want to see what poses look like. But she maintains that all it really takes is a thorough, mindful, and articulate communication of the sequence, and you can effectively guide someone through any kind of movement and instruction.
With the help of an extraordinary group of musicians, THE GLOBAL FOLK, with whom Angela has collaborated for many years, and who have created a breathtaking canon of ambient music just for the occasion, Angela has created a one-hour-plus yoga-mindfulness experience, which includes relaxation techniques, Sun Salutations, strength asanas, chakra work, and meditation, which can be practiced as a whole or in individual sections, and which can be taken anywhere, for your convenience.
And in this world of swiftly accruing noise, industry, machines, and devices which can "distract humanity from the essence of life," as the painter and poet Jean Arp once said, who couldn't use a little calming and centering?
The Global Folk (AKA)...
Angela Carole Brown - vocal narrative, Tibetan singing bowls, edrone
Ken Rosser - cavaquinho, electric sitar, electric guitar, pipa
Paul Angers - tan tan, serdo, udu drum, kalimba, gong, chimes, bells
Produced by Angela Carole Brown for Rue de la Harpe Records
Recorded and Mixed by Craig Pilo
Mastered by Maurice Gainen
Artwork by Angela Carole Brown
Photography by Annamarie Rewal
"Angela's voice is transcendental, her words magical, incisive and true. This is a gorgeous and inspirational CD." – Lily Knight, THE AWARENESS CENTER
YOGA AS MUSE: How My Practice Has Informed My Art:
by Angela Carole Brown
I have been a singer/songwriter for twenty years. I have been a yoga practitioner for fifteen. When I look back on my body of work, I see an unfocused songsmith, full of agendas. My music has resembled everything from show tunes that I wrote for easy money, to power-pop ballads, hoping to become a star, to straight-ahead jazz, trying desperately to be hip.
It wasn’t until yoga came into my life, and I learned to quiet my world, that my practice reshaped me as an artist and I began to connect with the art of song on a level too organic for agenda.
This wasn’t instantaneous. I persevered through the years of the yoga novice and the machinations of the ego: wanting the practice to give me an awesome body and stupefying flexibility (a leg behind the head is something we’d all like to show off, wouldn’t we?), wanting to wear the badge of New-Age-artsy-liberal-hippy-chic honor, and, perhaps the biggest trap of all, wanting instant enlightenment. I begrudgingly honored patience, and, as will beautifully happen with time and commitment, finally managed to burrow deep.
It was during this shift that I clearly saw my music going through the same stages of maturation. The writing was no longer about acceptance in my industry. It became surprisingly internal.
Today my music is as close to pure as it’s ever been. Can it traverse even further? Of course! But I believe that where it is today owes its great debt to the practice of yoga. Sometimes I even wonder if it might not be the other way around. After all, they both regard the Pursuit of Truth.
Though in the end, as life goes galloping richly by, the richer for all our efforts to be whole, does it really matter?
(c) 2007 by Angela Carole Brown
A Message From Angela:
I owe a very special thanks to the teachers who brought this extraordinary practice into my life: most especially Lily Knight and the Awareness Center of Pasadena. A very special and deep gratitude to the spiritual guides who have helped me to learn the importance of self-inquiry: Margo Gravelle of Soul Collage; Ajaan Thanissaro Bikkhu of the Metta Forest Monastery; the late and great comedian Lotus Weinstock; and Dr. Barbara Wright, Ph.D. And a very special thanks of gratitude to I.D. Breakfield, who was singularly instrumental in helping me to fine-tune this program and make it work. To The Global Folk: You are a gift to my life. And to Craig Pilo, who first suggested I do this, and who was singularly instrumental in helping me get it done.
And finally to the great writers, philosophers, and mystics who have changed my life by showing me the value in examining it.
This project is dedicated with my deepest love to my family, the Brown-Hicks-Thomases.