Singing and music have defined my life.
My earliest memory is of standing in front of a second-hand record player, the kind where you could stack several 45s, singing my heart out. (Much to the annoyance of the people in the apartments all around me, and my mother, who probably had to fight the urge to break my 45 of Over the Rainbow
Singing along with records, cassettes and CDs would become a life-long activity.
I began piano lessons at around age 6, which gave me another musical background for my vocals.
In school, I participated in all the choirs, ensembles and musical groups I could (I also played clarinet for years) and managed to snag leads in the school musicals, while dreaming of moving to New York to become a Broadway star. I also sang light opera during the summer for various programs.
My path took a U-turn after high school graduation, when I joined my first “professional singing group.” That means I got paid for it. Visions of Broadway gave way to Rock Star fantasies. Things really got wild and crazy after that. I spent 20 years working full-time as the lead singer and keyboard player in various rock bands, and then many more years part-time.
During all those years I never heard anything about using sound/music to heal. Utilizing my voice for anything beyond entertainment wasn’t on my radar.
My non-traditional education exploded when I moved to Boulder, Colorado, the quirky community in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains.
I had a transcendental experience at my first sound circle.
Toning and chanting in a room with amazing acoustics, filled with concentric circles of enthusiastic singers, blasted open my limited notions of music. When it was my turn to stretch out in the center and allow myself to receive the vibrations/frequencies, it was almost more than my body/mind could process. I don’t know if I’ve ever had such a powerful experience of pure bliss since that first time. It was a truly memorable and life-changing event.
Sound healing continues to be a part of my personal and professional lives.
This definition of sound healing comes from the website of California Institute of Integral Studies, where they offer a certificate in sound:
“Since time immemorial, every spiritual tradition of the world has used sound for healing. Sound is an integral part of the healing power of shamanic practices, and is used extensively today in scientific research, as well as in integrative medicine and as a tool in pain management. Sound supports the process of transforming energy patterns, reveals measurable effects in the physical body, and facilitates the connection between mind-body-spirit. The singing voice, for example, as a fabric of breath, vibration, and emotion, can affect the body and mind more efficiently than any other form of sound. Vocal sounds are a primary source of energy, balancing and stimulating the brain. Indeed, certain sounds are considered a tonic for the brain, and they are used frequently in the treatment of chronic depression and pain. Today, the field of sound and music healing is rapidly gaining recognition as an essential component of health care in our society. Many acupuncturists, naturopaths, chiropractors, massage therapists, and psychotherapists, to name just a few, have integrated sound and music healing into their practice. In view of the fast-emerging fields of sound and music in healing, as well as contemporary shamanism, it is increasingly important to understand how sound, music, and chant can support therapeutic and growth processes.”
My novella, Blood Song
, first appeared in 2009 (in a much shorter form) in the Mammoth Book of Paranormal Romance
. Ever since then, I’ve been meaning to expand and self-publish it, and I finally did. It should be live on Amazon through August, then will be available at all ebook retailers.
Blurb:A voice like sunlight…
Grace Blackburn’s extraordinary voice is a gift. And a curse. As a sound healer, her otherworldly singing can create miracles. It can also kill. Only her sound circle provides the safety she craves, until the night Grace crosses paths with a fanged creature and dreams she is rescued by an angel.A soul lost to the night…
Ethan James is sexy, playful, irreverent. And a vampire. Between his sadistic master and his dangerous blood lust, he’s losing all control of his life. Assigned to exterminate feral vampires to protect humans and prevent any unwelcome light shining on the hidden world of the bloodsuckers, he rescues a woman whose soothing voice reminds him of the humanity he’s lost.A deadly dance…
Grace has spent a lifetime avoiding the strong emotions that trigger deadly consequences, but Ethan arouses her like no other. He saved her, but she may be his salvation. Each is dangerous to the other. Now they must join forces and trust in the transformative power of love as they battle the hungry forces of the night.
In celebration of the novella’s release, I’m giving away a copy of one of my books/stories to a commenter here who answers the question:
What is your experience with sound healing?
The winner will be chosen in one week. (USA only for print books, please.)
This post was originally posted at http://www.cafeotherworld.com