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Travis Wernet
Mystical Spoken Word Poetry and Instrumentals, held up and punctuated by the powerful emanations of Didjeridu, World Beats, Female Vocals, Melodic Asents and D
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7 songs
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Trance-inducing didjeridu and percussion-driving shamanic jig, featuring vocal inflections flying in the wind, straight out of the Tuvan Steppe-Lands
Dreams Haunting Desire
Shamanic beats and a Gothic, ritualistic call to Rebirth, inflected with berimbau, didjeridu and meditative Spoken Word.
Yearning To Come Be Feathers Again
There's a Hole in My Earth
7 songs
Currently I am pursuing a career as a professional recording artist and have begun several projects highlighting both the didjeridu and my own original spoken word poetry. Over the last year (2007) I have been gathering with other musicians in the band "Pele's Tears", a Gypsy-World-Groove project who have perform in the SF Bay Area. We came together when Kashia asked me to play with himself, Estas Tonne - a remarkable flamenco guitarist and Papillon - a breath-taking Ritual Belly Dancer (www.tribalecho.com) at an Anon Salon Evening. We create music that celebrates the wild and beautiful elements of the soul. Our mission is to bring a sense of empowerment into our lives and the lives of our listeners through a fusion of the ancient traditions of various musical and dance styles via a contemporized expression of ritual theatre and sound. For nine years I played didjeridu with Devotional-World-Fusion group "Axis Mundi" and moved on from that last New Years, grateful for many years of performance with them and the way in which that group helped me to stay in touch with what's important to me in my life. "Lanterns of Midnight" is my first solo release which touches into several genres of music, including Lyrical, World, Trip-Hop, Ambient and Chillout. I have used these favorite styles as vehicles for a canvas upon which to place a musical painting of the landscape of the Soul, giving voice to a spiri of Longing amidst the drones and growls of the didjeridu, the wind-swept airs of the Native American flute and the pulse of various tribal percussion instruments in addition to drawing upon the melodic sway of guitar and bass. "Outlaw Dervish" is my new studio release with Ben Leinbach and will form the foundation of a new side project that will incorporate members of "Pele's Tears" and possibly others. We are excited to bring a flavor of Trip-Hop and Down-Tempo into our forte and this record expresses a more electronic, albeit organic, flavor as well as offering more straight-up Grooves and Instrumentals. People are saying that the new CD is more humorous and universal in tone and there is definitely a sense of humor which contrasts a bit with "Lanterns". I feel that the new project is more mature musically and speaks to a broader sense of listening and experience.
Band/artist history
The history of my inspiration for the solo material is rooted deeply in moments of wonder and mystery and also a simple love for co-creation and discovery. Didjeridu is like life to me - I became interested in making music again when I started to play this instrument. Although I have been playing for a long time, I only recently found a teacher, Alan Tower, who is helping me to refine and expand my playing and I feel like I am finally receiving some powerful mentoring and instruction. I have also studied for a few months with Tobias Roberson on darbukka to firm up my understanding and love of percussion. I played a little bit on the new CD "Outlaw Dervish". The poetry I say, write and record is a filtering down through the years of times that represent being inhabited by something greater and larger than myself (or perhaps by the most authentic sense of who I am, who we are as people). This effort is at translating the experience of being fully alive into an expression aimed at sharing the possibility of being opened to a wider source of who we might be, who I perceive myself as, which is, as the Sufis believe, ultimately a mystery. I have played the didjeridu for at least ten years and began my career in a four-piece band inspired by 80's New Wave and Punk, Psychedelic Furs, Love and Rockets as well as Celtic Rock, a la U2, the Alarm, Simple Minds. I started a band straight out of high school called "Exit" and later enjoyed the mid-nineties Dance Music scene in the Bay Area.
Have you performed in front of an audience?
Debuting my solo release "Lanterns of Midnight" in December '06 with a surprise guest appearance by Jason Parmar on the Tablas, I began a long string of very enjoyable shows. These included the Spectra Ball in March '07 (with Jeff Stot on Ud) And then, In April '07 I assembled a group which included Aharon Wheels Bolsta (www.aharonwheelsbolsta.com), Dana Dharma Devi (of various groups including "Dharma Rose" and part-time guests Ken Becker and Terese Bell who had performed with "Pele's Tears", to play an evening of sacred music at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco. "Pele's Tears" also appeared in June at the Harmony Festival with special guest Lucia Comnes (www.myspace.com/ameetingatthecrossroads). We have performed various sets at the Ambiotica Lounge and the Sea of Dreams as well as the Howeird Street Fair with Josh Brill (www.joshbrillmusic.com). I would describe playing "Live" as the moment where the music truly comes alive and the synergy with the audience is the most exciting and rewarding aspect of any efforts I am making to create the kind of music I can be proud of and enjoy myself
Your musical influences
Stephen Kent, Alan Tower, Ganga Giri, Didjworks and Inlakesh are real inspirators with the didjeridu side of things. I have loved Ambient music and Groove music since I first came across it in the early nineties. Brian Eno is brilliant and has consistenly impressed me. Jim Morrison and the Doors struck me quite hard back in my 'Goth' days. Poetically and Lyrically, Robert Bly, Bono, Coleman Barks, Daniel Ladinsky and David Whyte and their original stuff as well as translations of Kabir, Rumi, Lalla and Hafiz - some of these poems have literally shifted my entire experience of being alive. I love the solidity that has formed in recent years with more organic styles of Electronica, such as Downtempo, Progressive Breaks and Trip-Hop - I would mention Massive Attack, Asian Dub Foundation, Portishead, Talvin Singh, Kid Loco, Banco de Gaia, Tricky, the Orb, and locally and lately, Dov, Tipper, Lorin, Kurian, Stella Mara, Goddess Alchemy. Any music that gets to the heart and comes from the heart has inspired me and continues to do so.
What equipment do you use?
I play didjeridus that are truly authentically crafted by Indigenous People in Australia (www.didjshop.com) , drums from all over, including Djembe and Darbukka and am currently using the Roland Hand Sonic, TC Helicon Voice Processor and the JamMan Loop Machine for use in live settings.
Anything else?
May we all learn from each other and inspire one and the next to create the most potent and rich expressions of our deepest hearts, crafting a gentle, yet wild and strong, impossible fire within the ocean of our hearts, caressed by the invisible spirits of Life and nourished in the Cosmos and the sacred Earth Itself.
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