Instrumental world percussion to transport your imagination.
Waterfire contains ten tracks of all-original world percussion. Creative soundscapes of powerful djembe, ashiko and dunun drums, playful body percussion, melodic bells, chimes, scrapers, and blocks, sultry shekeres, rainsticks, singing bowls, and the gentle tones of the Hang; Waterfire is a celebration of rhythms and sounds from around the world. The bonus track, Love, is a spoken word poem.
CT - Kudos and respect to my recording engineer and co-producer, Robinson Eikenberry. We spent more than two years working on the album, recording and editing, and then sent the tracks to Eric Conn at Independent Mastering to be mastered. Thanks to Eric and Robinson, the sound quality is fantastic. The better your sound system, the more you’ll enjoy it.
Waterfire is a compilation of all my favorite instruments and styles. Some of the arrangements began with concepts, and I had a specific goal when I began working on them, while other pieces developed in completely organic and unexpected ways, as each recording session opened up new ideas and possibilities.
It all began with the opening track, Droplets, a playful little tune featuring the gentle metallic tones of the Hang. I added shakers, blocks, talking drums and a cowskin djembe, but kept the Hang the primary instrument.
Droplets led me into the deeper and more complex soundscapes of Rivers, Cyclone and Inferno. I spent incredible quantities of time developing their textures and moods, and enjoyed the process every bit as much as the results.
The drum prayer tracks, Dawnprayer, Noonprayer and Nightprayer, are one hundred percent unadulterated improvisations. During the long days of oh-so-precise recording sessions, sometimes I needed to just cut loose for a few minutes, so I did. We recorded all those free-form, pure-improv, straight-from-the-heart, little jams, and after collecting two years’ worth, I chose my three favorites for the final recording.
I originally intended the whole CD to be instrumental arrangements, but Love had its own agenda. (I should have known…) Love is a spoken word piece I wrote as a cribside prayer for a child. It began as a reaction to the type of overly aggressive and negative lyrics I so often hear on popular radio - I decided to write a piece that would be simply a list of forms of divinity. Speaking the words into the mic, I imagined I was whispering a “good night” meditation into the ears of a baby. I didn’t plan all the interaction of the multiple vocal tracks, it just “happened.” I spoke the words three times, and we pasted them together the way they came out. What you hear is extremely close to the original, “random” placements.
Approaching the completion of the CD, I had finished nine of the tracks by mid-November of 2008, and the two unfinished tracks were the title track, Waterfire, and track number eight, Inferno. Then on November 13, ’08, my entire neighborhood burned to the ground in one of the worst firestorms in California history. (Search “Santa Barbara Tea Fire.”) It took months for me to emotionally recover from losing every material object I owned, but when I was finally able to resume work on Inferno, my experience gave me the motivation to take that arrangement farther than any other. It isn’t a happy, playful little bouncy tune – it is the monster I watched consume my house, and everything else in sight.
I lost more than a thousand instruments in the fire, including dozens of the ones I had recorded for this album. To complete the title track, Waterfire, my engineer and I actually imported sounds we had recorded previously, so some of the notes you hear are like memories, or angels, singing to us from the past to the present to the future.
Thanks for your interest.
I hope you enjoy the music.
Cameron Tummel is a globally renowned composer, recording artist, and team building specialist, based in Santa Barbara, California.
Bio, music, videos and other info online at: www.CameronTummel.com