How Do I Select My Sounds?

A while back, I put it out on Facebook that if anyone had a question for me, to ask it, and I would post the answers. Today's blog looks at one of those questions.

‪Susan T. Blake‬: Hi Michael! I listened to your interview with Andres Peraza last night (so interesting!), and a question occurred to me. With the vast array of gongs, drums, symbols, bowls, etc. you have, how do you choose the ones to use for a session, especially if it's healing work? I know you are intuitive about the music that flows through you, and I wonder to what extent that is a part of choosing the instruments as well. And to what extent they…volunteer. Thanks!

MB: I have spent a lot of time working with the Gongs/Bowls/Bells over the years, and in that time I have found some sounds that I feel are consistent with what I do for meditation/sound therapy. So I have developed a basic set up that I use most of the time because I know the Gongs/Bowls/Bells well, and also know how they work together as a unit. That said, sometimes I will look around my studio and think about other sounds that might fit how I’m feeling at that particular moment. Yes, it is very intuitive, so I will sort of feel my way around things and decide, “Yes, that sound will work well tonight,” and then maybe substitute it for something in the set up, or bring it as an addition. 

So many Gongs, so little time…

The biggest thing, that I’ve written about extensively on this blog, is that you need to work with all your instruments a lot, so you know what types of sounds they will yield up, and how to coax those sounds out of them. Then you need to know how different instruments will work together to form additional sounds. So even though it’s very intuitive for me, it’s built upon years of practice and study. So I can look at a Gong/Bowl/Bell and know what sounds I can get from it, and how those sounds will fit in with the other instruments.

Here is the interview that Susan mentioned above:

~ MB

Chop Wood | Carry Water | Play Gongs


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