Queena & Yumi

Yumi introduced me to Queena whose studio is in the same building as Ore Art. They wanted to improvise a sound bath together. Improvising with other people is always a challenge but the rewards can be great. Trust is a big part of a successful performance and their performances were pretty amazing. Queena played a single medium size gong while Yumi played her large symphonic gong. Their improvisations yielded emotional and moving recordings and are some of my favorite. Even though they seldom play together, their connection and dialogue borders on instinct.

Sound Bath 014: [Listen here]
Queena and Yumi played together for their sessions. This is perhaps the most musical and expressive recording I have recorded so far and is representative of the kind of recordings I have been fortunate to record these past few months. It is the one that had the most effect on me. Every time I listen to this, I am just overwhelmed. It is just beautiful.

Yumi had just gotten her new titanium gong the day before and this was her first performance with it. She combined Queena's gong to make a super 3-gong combo. Queena played her singing bowls, rain box, and shamanic drum. They had decided that the titanium gong sounded better with the bowls and the symphonic gongs paired best with the drum.

They begin playing the bowls and titanium gong. Starting at the pace of life, it is full of energy and music. Heavy hits on the bowls shake the senses as mixed musical sequences create a pleasant environment. Queena plays with the dynamics playing louder and softer letting the performance breathe. She shares the sonic space with Yumi as she awakens the gong- swelling, swallowing everything. As she retreats, the bowls slowly come up for air with their song. The bowls begin to become less varied as Queena strikes only a few bowls at a time, sometimes striking a single bowl until its constant ring fills your ears. The striking stops. Decent is imminent.

A rain box is flipped as it creates a constant shower. The next scene begins. Everything slows way down. The last rhythm is played as Yumi signals a transition with a single hit of her large symphonic gong.

What happens next is a dance. The synergy between them is amazing. You are enraptured with their song as it embraces you and take you lower and lower until the veil is removed and you realize where you are. Love and loss. Light and dark. Everything and nothing. It is balance. It is powerful. It is deep. The pressure crushes you as you take shallow breaths. You find them again as they pull you to the surface. They conclude playing with the rain box. As the last few stones trickle down, they end with their final note as you break the surface and take a breath.