"….Would you please put me back in my body? “Profound” doesn’t even get there."
–Kitty Norris, Iridium Radio, San Francisco.
“… Memo has channeled in something special this time.”
–John Stillwell, Ancient Territories Flutes.
“Memo’s Native American style flute music lifts you up and transports you on multiple shamanic journeys. This is startling shamanic music that has definite spiritual and healing properties. Like the bulk of Memo’s musical archive, it breaks you free of time as you step into a musical world of sacred echoes.”
I was daydreaming about a childhood friend who had passed on early in his life, and began to realize that I am savoring life’s mysteries while at the same time trying to minimize my karmic baggage. I remembered how indigenous shaman advise their clients to dream their own world into existence. Now quantum theory seems to confirm what shaman have taught for generations. I scheduled an impromptu session in the studio; a session which resulted in the track “Banshee.” And so began the ‘Spirit Whispers’ album. It’s songs track a soul’s journey through this life and beyond.
About the Album Art
I made this image of a medicine woman emerging from the darkness in the Mojave Desert. The green and orange objects on the left side of the image above the chollo cactus remain a mystery to me, but I am assured that I have their permission to be printed.
About the Tracks:
“Fairy Rings” are dark circles in grass that mark the growth of underground fungi (mushrooms). There is much folklore associated with these perennial rings. Often associated with fairies, it is considered unlucky to step in one, at least without offering one’s respects. A contrarian view suggests one can make a wish when passing by a fairy ring.
“Desert Medicine.” Our deserts hold many mysteries yet to be discovered and understood.
“Life Stream.” Shamanic apprentices are sometimes asked to review their life story as if it were a river, tracking it from the source to its destination. Sometimes it may flow or stagnate, fill a great body of water, or run underground. Ultimately we may be able to channel the flow as we would want.
“Recapitulation.” If I had a sacred witness bound to confidentiality, how would I recapitulate my life?
“Holding Space.” Refers to creating a sacred space for healing and meditation by first honoring the four cardinal directions, then Mother Earth and the Great Spirit.
“Ray of Hope” is a surprising healing melody, calling on energies from other dimensions to replace the heaviness that may no longer serve you.
“Banshee.” Don’t be afraid! The banshee is from Gaelic folklore, meaning “Woman of the Fairies.” It is a female apparition that may be a harbinger of a death in the family or that may bring a message from the other side. I must admit that I was a little surprised by what came out of this Native American style drone flute in the key of E.
“Rainbow Bridge. A Native People sacred site hidden in the canyons at the base of Navajo Mountain. Also refers to the mythical bridge that is located just this side of Heaven.
“Portal.” Spiritual portals beckon us to transition and transform in order to negotiate a life passage. Usually the portal is smaller than through which we can comfortably fit without leaving some baggage behind.
“Celestial Parents” harkens to the hero’s journey of the Tarot and Greek mythology. The innocent hero bumbles through a series of tests and trials but is secretly but lovingly watched over by celestial parents (the gods).
“Yin Blossoms” is inspired by our connection with deep feminine wisdom.
“Reunion.” With all the anticipation and anxious feelings of an unexpected or unannounced reunion with a member of your lineage.
“Waking Soundly” is an invitation to move forward with balance and deliberation.
“Chamber of Grace” is the place of energetic repose of separated soul parts that could return to the whole. Many indigenous cultures practice the equivalent of a ‘soul retrieval.’
“Gifts of Destiny” are all the positive things brought back to someone who has experienced a destiny retrieval.
“Memo” is the Spanish nickname for “Bill.” It stuck to me during a trip to the jungles of the Yucatan. On that trip, I seemed to be invisible as “Bill”, “William” or “Guillermo.” Then I recalled that “Memo” was the correct nickname to use in Spanish. So, when I introduced myself as “Memo”, invariably the response was “Ah, Memo, my new, deep friend! How wonderful to meet you! When you return to the Yucatan again, you should really try to learn to speak Maya!”
I am a healer/artist and shamanic practitioner in the Inca tradition. The flute first appeared to me in a shamanic journey called a ‘soul retrieval.’ I later incorporated the Native American flute in the shamanic practices of opening sacred spaces, sound healing and divination.
But I didn’t start recording until I received the “Creator Rites” of the Munay-Ki from the shaman elders of Peru. The music is inspired by their powerful healing ways. It connected me with my Celtic roots; I guess that’s apparent in some of the tracks.
I’m inspired by the beautiful flute music of R. Carlos Nakai, Mary Youngblood, Stephen DeRuby, and Scott August.
The Native American flute accompanies me on a quest for light, love and harmony. I hope you enjoy these melodies as much as I do playing them for you.
About the Flutes
I have found that makers of the Native American flute are special people, both spiritual and gifted craftsmen. I use flutes made by the following individuals and I feel blessed to call them my friends:
Ancient Territories Flutes (John Stillwell), www.atflutes.com
Coyote Oldman (www.coyoteoldman.com)
Earthtone Flutes (Geoffrey Ellis), www.earthtoneflutes.com
Love Flutes (Stephen DeRuby), www.deruby.com
RV Flutes (Russ Venable), www.rvflutes.com
A little about the Q’ero of Peru
When Pizzaro arrived in the first half of the 16th Century in Peru, the lives of the Inca, 'the people of energy' were forever changed. Conquest, disease and civil war spared a few to flee to cities in the high Andes like Machu Picchu, where it has been said that 'no Spaniard in his right mind would follow.' For 500 years they were to live in isolation and wait for the time when the world would need them again.
The Q'ero are the last direct descendants of those Inca. They call themselves the Children of Inti (the Sun). These mountain Shamans of different levels (Altumisayuq, Pampamisayuq) still have a high reputation, and have begun to bring their knowledge down from the mountains for the benefit of the world and its healing. They worship Mother Earth (Pachamama) and believe that mountains like Apu Ausangate in Peru as well as the other great mountains of the Earth are the sources of ancient wisdom long forgotten in today's world of technology. Only recently has science and quantum mechanics shown that there may be more to their ancient wisdom than lore.
The Q'ero tell us of turning points (Pachacutti) when one age replaces another. Legend tells of the first age, the time of the first men who disappeared with the coming of the sun. The first Inca subsequently appeared during the first age.
The current age (Kay Pacha) was initiated by the arrival of the Spanish and the violent death of the Inca king, Inkarri, who afterwards raptured to the sanctuary Paititi. The time of the Incas is often referred to as the Kay Pacha which is also the age of the sun (Inti). This age will end with another Pachakutiy when Inkarri returns converting everything into gold and silver (Taripay Pacha).
The Q'ero are now beginning to share their wisdom and healing methods. They teach us how to live our lives 'in the moment', full of spirit and bliss 'dreaming our own world into existence.' We come to realize that we are much, much more than the stories that have bound us to a life a stress and dis-ease. Once shed, we make room for our new, healthy lives, where it is possible to manifest our bliss without feeling stalked by time or death.