Randy Granger

Randy Granger
In the Chihuahuan Desert near the Organ Mountains, New Mexico

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Nawsome November tour, collaborations with Craig Childs and Cornell Kinderknecht!

Happy autumn friends. By far this is my favorite time in New Mexico with our short fall and extended Indian Summer. Chiles have been roasted and put away in the freezer to remind us of our bountiful harvest in the cold of our high desert winters. I'm getting ready for my Nawsome November tour of the south. It begins with my traditional appearance at our Renaissance Arts Faire where I've performed for over ten years each fall. This year I am also the MC for the entire event. Attendance for this usually is between 25,000 and 40,000 thousand souls and is a highlight and main fund raiser for the Dona Ana Arts Council. Check schedule below for times.

Then I'm on my way back to headline again at  Native Rhythms in beautiful Melbourne, FL so see my great listeners, friends and eat myself silly with seafood and oranges from the Indian River. Before that I'll do a house concert near Hattiesburg, MS. I'm doing a special performance and fundraiser in Summertown, TN on Nov. 16th. When they heard I, a Native American Musician was coming they whipped up a special benefit, dinner, film and concert to help out the Native American tribe south of New Orleans who are losing their land through their organization called Plenty. These folks live in a cooperative community called The Farm and raise money for all sorts of people in need as well as protest fracking, bring light to injustice and are an example of cooperation with their farm, store, community center. I'm so honored and thrilled to be a part of their event! If you know anything about me you know this is right up my alley of helping others.

Nov 22 I have the great privilege of performing again with one of my favorite musicians the award-winning, multi-instrumentalist  Cornell Kinderknecht at the Dallas Meditation Center. What an absolute treat. Check details below. Nov 23 I'll return to be part of Cornell's Annual Flute/Music Party with Butch and Laura Hall, in Weatherford, TX where I have so much fun it is probably illegal in most southern states haha.
Cornell Kinderknecht and Randy Granger 

Craig Childs
December 2 I am so thrilled to be doing a performance with one the most important nature and archaeological writers alive today, NPR contributor Craig Childs at the West End Arts Depot in Las Cruces, NM, 7PM. We have wanted to work together for years and he found himself coming through before heading out into the frozen tundra so we a collaborating on a very special evening of reading, music, spirit and mystery.

As always PLEASE share my calendar with friends and contacts you have in the areas I'm playing. It helps tremendously when someone receives a personal invitation and recommendation. I hope to see and meet as many of you as possible on this tour and others! Be well and walk in beauty all the days of your life.

Peace,
Randy

November 2nd – Dona Ana Arts Council Renaissance Arts Faire, Young Park Las Cruces, NM 2:00 PM, Main Stage, EMCEE All Day http://www.las-cruces-arts.org/events/renaissance-artsfaire/renaissance-artsfaire-artists/ 

November 3rd – Dona Ana Arts Council Renaissance Arts Faire, Young Park Las Cruces, NM 2:00 PM, Main Stage, EMCEE All Day http://www.las-cruces-arts.org/events/renaissance-artsfaire/renaissance-artsfaire-artists/ 

November 6th – House Concert with Randy Granger, Moselle, MS 7-9PM Home of Rita & Robin Clarke https://www.facebook.com/events/539044279516336/?ref_dashboard_filter=calendar&source=1

November 8-9 – Native Rhythms Festival, Melbourne, FL. Various performance times and workshops. Check website for full schedule http://nativerhythmsfestival.com

November 16th Concert and benefit at The Farm Community, Summerton, TN http://thefarmcommunity.com/directions.html  Event begins @6PM in the Community Center. Benefit for relief organization called “Plenty”--since Katrina we have been going down to help the Native American tribe south of New Orleans who are losing their land. Benefit meal, film about the issue and concert by Randy Granger, Award-winning Native American musician.

November 22nd – Gratitude Concert with Cornell Kinderknecht and Randy Granger at the Dallas Meditation Center, https://www.facebook.com/events/1427355704153793/?ref_dashboard_filter=calendar&source=1   Ticket info at http://www.cornellk.com/posters/131122CornellRandy.html

November 23rd Cornell's Annual Flute/Music Party with Butch and Laura Hall, Weatherford, TX 12-5PM Info at: https://www.facebook.com/events/541310155925011/?ref_dashboard_filter=calendar&source=1 

December 2nd – “We Shall Walk in Beauty”  special performance with Craig Childs and Randy Granger performance of reading and music at W.e.a.D. (West End Arts Depot) http://www.we-ad.org/index.html 401 North Mesilla St, Las Cruces 88005 7PM. More information soon. Nationally recognized author and NPR contributor Craig Childs reads from selected works along with award-winning Native American musician Randy Granger, also featured on NPR, perform together in a unique and special event. Don’t miss it!

December 10thUnity Church of Las Cruces 125 Wyatt Dr  Las Cruces, NM 88004
(575) 523-5592, 10:30AM Special Music by Randy Granger http://www.unityoflascruces.org/home.aspx 

Monday, October 14, 2013

Autumn affirmations of Rock Art, Pagans, UU's and the State Fair.

Randy Granger at SWEC 2013 Gala Fundraiser 
Happy autumn friends. We are blessed with an extended Indian Summer here in the Chihuahuan desert of southern New Mexico. Our Rio Grande is mostly Rio Seco (dry) this summer sadly. We had such great rain and were happy for it. Let’s hope it replenishes the watershed. Since my last post I’ve performed up in Albuquerque at the NM State Fair in the Indian Village at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Albuquerque where I got to try out their new worship hall. It is beautiful and austere, very UU. They love my music there and I love playing there where people really listen to the spirit and intent of your music. Also I’ve performed here at the Southwest Environmental Center’s SWEC fundraiser Gala on the Downtown Street of Las Cruces. It was posh and a beautiful evening settled into our downtown canyons and my music swirled and caressed the people and buildings. It was a great cause. I wasn’t paid more than a utility payment for playing, I'm grateful, but hey it’s about keeping the circulation of giving and receiving giving. 

Las Cruces Pagan Pride Day Young Park 
Last weekend I performed at the Pagan Pride Day here at Young Park in Las Cruces. The weather and day was ideal and our fall weather held out for us so well. I really believe diversity is having a respect for everyone’s own journey to his or her Creator. It’s more than lip service for me and I was honored to be  headline the day. My booth was stocked with the rattles, flute, Sage, Smudge, jewelry and music I carry. I also reconnected with some great drummers in the area and we jammed on stage and afterwards that night at Susan Jewel’s drumming studio. My hands were sore. Ha-ha. I love me some drumming.

With all of my recent gigs the number of people who come up to me and tell me how they listen to my music is touching and a much needed affirmation to continue. They say they listen to it every morning to get into a peaceful zone, as they work on their art, their computer, at work, before bed, doing mediation, prayer etc. I’m just so completely overcome with emotion and gratitude when I hear this. One woman came just to buy a copy of Strong Medicine for her friend who has been diagnosed with cancer. She wanted to give her a copy personally.

Another said it was all they listened to when their brother was in his battle. Another has a young, healthy, athlete son who just had surgery for testicular cancer and he said he listens to Deep Peace to You over and over for comfort and strength. I’m so touch by their personal stories. As I work in the studio it’s easy to forget my music impacts the world. When I’m stressing over money I don’t feel I’m anything special and certainly not important to anyone. So these testimonies are affirmation and feedback from creator/universe saying yes you are and you need to birth even more of your music into this world. So thank you.

This weekend I return to perform for the second year at the Rock Art Rendezvous near Comstock, TX. It is at the White Shaman Preserve across from Seminole Canyon St Park. The Non-Profit Rock Art Foundation’s mission in part is to: 

Educating public and private sectors about the endangered status of rock art in Texas
Restoration and preservation research
Acquiring endangered sites for transfer to agencies capable of ensuring their integrity.
Continuing to locate and document previously unrecorded sites
Fostering harmonious relations with land owners for site management / protection and supervised visitation
Archiving photographic collections

Every year they meet and have a rendezvous and organize hikes to the pictograph and petroglyph sites over five millennia old that dot the lower Pecos river area of the southwest. It’s breathtaking and humbling to go on these hikes mostly on privately owned land. I first went three years ago and jammed at night with the other great musicians who come to the gathering.  So I performed a concert last year on the Saturday night and was invited to return and do it again. The feedback from the crowd was strong, supportive and laced with appreciation. I’m the one who is most appreciative the opportunity as I totally support their efforts.  I play me flute at the cave rock art shelters and feel my ancestor’s spirit and presence. They care they took to leave those ancient messages makes me feel so grateful I get to see it. Truly. And, I get to some really special and great friends again !!!!!!

Rock Art Foundation

Work on the new album of solo Native American flute "Ancient Grace" music continues. I haven’t launched the Indiegogo campaign yet because I haven’t been able to edit and finish the video. It takes so much time and care it’s been a challenge. I’m sorry for that. I very much know there is support for it and I will burn the midnight oil to get it launched before I get too overwhelmed. Several people have supported me through PayPal and I have a folder with their backing info. You can also do that in any amount you wish. My PayPal is hangguy@gmail.com Be sure and copy and paste the email as there are 2 “g’s” Thanks

Talk to you after the Rock Art Rendezvous. You can always support them too at www.rockart.org and learn more about their amazing work and mission. 

Blessings to you at every turn. Be sure and check me out on iTunes, Amazon.com, CDBaby.com. Pandora, Youtube and my website
Randy

randygranger.net


Friday, September 13, 2013

Why do YOU do your music?

Ask any musician who can form a sentence why they are a musician? (and good luck) I’m talking here about the ones who do music as a job, a continued passion not the dabblers. I mean the one’s who don’t have a back up plan because they’ve never considered there is one. Not to diminish the rest of you. If you are making music then the most power to you my friend. Keep on. But when you “do” music and make a living at it solely or part-time it changes the dynamics completely. Believe me. Try it you’ll understand. 

A couple of recent interactions have me questioning. It’s about expectations of you as an artist, your audience, (if you’re blessed with one), where you will perform, how much you’ll expect to be paid and how you replenish your energies at the end of the day.  I was on a jury selection and a guy overheard and friend and I talking about my music, being on the road etc. This guy turns and asks if I’m a musician? I say yeah and he asked the usual 50 questions, where? Who? Band? When? And, of course, if I’d heard of him.  Long story short he keeps coming back asking how I do it as in who books my gigs, who makes my CD’s, which band do I use, did I need a drummer? How do I make a living at it? I’m so used to this I just rattle off answers like a robot. He is so persistent I just say, “Look man I work all the time, all the time, promote like hell, have few friends, drive 14hrs a day, sleep in my car at rest areas, eat the same food for a week, spend little and just trust someone is going to show up to my gigs and I can sell some music to keep on doing it.”


He looks irritated and says, “Well I would never charge for what I do since I’m in a praise band. I believe in giving it away.” Ok. Delicate territory. I’m about ready to head butt him hard, but remember I’m enlightened. Must....educate. I remind him he asked how I make a living at music and say, “It’s because I have to dude, just like you need to keep your job to pay your bills right?” People who play for free are a bane to we professionals, but that’s for another time. Ha-ha 



Part of a working studio
The other thing that happened is much more affirming, but it is part of the same wheel. I’m working on my new album “Ancient Grace” an album of solo Native American flute music. It is in direct response to the many listeners at shows and people online I hear from asking “Me” directly for an instrumental CD of my music they can meditate, fall asleep, relax, do yoga, massage, rekei to. I said yes I’d record one. As you recording artists know, when you’re working on an album project you are alone either in your studio or with an engineer who, for professional reasons, won’t give you feedback except on how it sounds. You work for hours and hours trying to avoid ear fatigue. You don’t eat or drink because those sounds come through the mics and if you aren’t recording Didgeridoo it won’t be a pretty sound. Some days you think Yay this is sounding/feeling great. Other days you think what the hell am I doing here? I suck. My music sucks. No one will buy this. Time to sell even more, or everything, on EBay. Those are the tough days for sure. It’s natural. Just take a break. A walk. If you didn’t have high standards you wouldn’t feel this way. 


I find Orange and Red help me work. ;-)
So in my meditation I was asking the Universe, Spirit... for a sign that my music matters, that it has a place in this world. After a while I check my email and found this from a fan that bought my music two years ago at a festival. He told me I needed to buy a private plane that it would be easier than driving everywhere. I’m totally serious. Anyway, here was this email from him and I just dropped my head on the table, emotional and grateful for the perfect sign. Here is the edited email for privacy:

 “Hi Randy,  We met at ….. a few years ago. A quick story:  I was driving from NC to PA on a day that every idiot that could get a car was out driving stupid. I was stuck in traffic and was about to pull out my gun and shoot myself then five others when one of your songs came up and I chilled out. So in a way, you saved 6 lives! 


Obviously I'm kidding, but I am amazed at what music can do. I hope you're still making great music. Take care”


When you put your heart, soul and passion into your music you don’t have anything left for yourself and, believe it or not, that’s ok. Just find the way that you recharge whether it is watching Breaking Bad reruns, playing games, cooking, hiking, meditating…..whatever. Do it because in the end the fact that you are inspired and given the gift of creativity and talent means YOU DO MATTER and what you do makes a difference whether you have 3 or 3,000 listeners.


I’m in Albuquerque this Sunday. Please come out, share it with your friends and post on your Facebook, twitter feeds. My Facebook page: Facebook Randy Granger Twitter: @RandyGranger  I appreciate you comments here. Thank you

RG

Sept. 15, 9:30AM and 11:00AM. Unitarian Universalist Church of Albuquerque, 3701 Carlisle Blvd NE, Albuqeruqe, NM http://www.uuabq.org/ 


Sept. 15 7PM Expo New Mexico State Fair, Indian Village, http://exponm.com/state-fair/indian-village-schedule/ 


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

F******* Faggot. A lesson in assertive tolerance.

Randy Granger
So and friend and I were on line at Genghis Grill here in Las Cruces, NM. It's a recently opened chain and I've eaten at them in other cities. We were in their "protein" section where you choose fish, chicken, meat etc. for your bowl. One of the employees dishing out the proteins (an African American younger guy) sees a friend in line after us. He says to him, "You look like a fucking faggot in that shirt." hahaha  My ears are jarred, like nails on a chalkboard, Rossane Barr singing,  I stop, walk back and say, "Excuse me did you just call him a fucking faggot?" He says, "Yes." I calmly yet with direct eye contact tell him that I was particularly offended by that language and was pretty certain the manager would be as well. I go on to say it isn't okay to use that word, and especially when you are an employee in a very public setting with paying customers. I explained it was as inappropriate as someone using the "N" word in his presence. Asked for his name.  We continued on a little more upset than we'd have liked and certainly not as receptive to a good meal digesting. On the grill line I hear a female employee telling another employee to “Fuck off.” I'm thinking, what the hell? I don't eat out much but this is not cool. I’m not a prude at all but I expect a certain level of restraint at a restaurant from employees not in the kitchen. Otherwise I'd hang out at a bar or sporting event to eat. Profanity changes the atmosphere. It makes it feel threatening, hostile. We’ve become accustomed to expect language that is profane, violent, demeaning as if we are all living inside the latest summer movie meets Breaking Bad.

I ask for the manager and get the assistant manager. I explain what happened to him. He is pretty shocked and apologizes. Soon after the GM comes to our table and asks what happened. I explain the story calmly yet I’m assertive saying it made our experience uncomfortable and in the age of Yelp, twitter and facebook it takes nothing for this to go viral. Heck, I have friends who post every interaction and critical review of everywhere they eat. Including whether or not the waiter had a cute butt.  The GM was upset too saying he feels like a baby sitter to 80 employees. Many of who are working their first paying job. My friend asks what kind of sensitivity training and protocols there are for these issues. He assured us there were many in place. He then bemoaned the quality of the work pool here in town where we live. A complaint I've heard over and over in our economically depressed area in the 47th poorest state. Still.  

The GM, my friend and I agreed that these are younger people, some employed for the first time, and that they joke like that often with each other. Even so we also agreed that level of unprofessionalism and lack of any type of awareness at having a job involving the public is--well not something we can do much about expect instance by instance demand better.

I decided to confront it head on instead of ruining our meal, seething and vowing to boycott and venting all over social media. I chose not to be victimized in that moment nor let my friend feel that way too. I had had enough of feeling like they business is doing you the favor allowing you to spend your money and descend to the level of rowdiness and private party atmosphere. The whole place felt like that as soon as we walked in so it shouldn’t be surprising. I mentioned this to the GM and he said it was a shift change. I asked if that was an excuse. He paused and said it was and that he was sorry for that.  I was impressed by how seriously the GM took our concerns. He came back several times and we chatted becoming more comfortable each time with his body language. He took the employee in the back and reprimanded him, pulled aside several other employees who were present and gave them a serious talking to from what I could read on their faces.

As if on cue, the "gay" employee brought us our bowls with a huge smile and warm greeting. He saw my name Randy on the ticket and said, "You're Randy GRANGER aren't you? I'm a big fan and have heard you several times. I love your music." That just further illustrated that I did the right thing by using the opportunity to educate rather than internalize the anger. We wanted to ask him what it was like to work there. We decided instead he is part of that generation and probably has developed some immunity as we did growing up and entering the work field.

The GM comped our desert, which was considerate of him but woefully inadequate.  That was my whole goal in the first place, of course, a free meal. I joke. All of us have a responsibility to address unskilled, hurtful,
bigoted, sexist comments when we hear them regardless of the intent of the person speaking. I offered to do sensitivity training for the crew. Having done hiv/aids training in schools, prisons, jail, for city/county employees I can handle myself with grace and ease in the most hostile environments. Not that I want that challenge.

As gay marriage as become legal here I've witnessed lgbt community members point the finger at each other for not doing enough, wearing the wrong clothes, being silent and just generally picking each other apart. What this is is internalized oppression they've felt for years from the dominant community. It is sad for me to see it. I want to tell them our battles aren't with one another. They are still with ignorance and fear in the larger world. Don't denigrate each other because it makes you feel better. Have the courage to stand up in a public place and say, it isn't okay to call other people, or each other, fucking faggots any longer. 

Peace,

Randy

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Radio Interview and live chat tonight on "Dimensions of Spirit" Hey Z Radio.

World of Faeries Fest by Mike Smith
Hello friends. My hope is that your Indian summer days you are happy, well, content and the same for your loved ones. I'm busy laying down tracks for my new album "Ancient Grace"which will be an all original solo Native American flute music album for meditation, healing, yoga, Rekei, massage etc. In other words the kind of CD you ask me for when I meet you at concerts or through emails. I am seeking funding as far as pre-orders at whatever level of donation is comfortable for you. I will also run a funding campaign on IndieGoGo which will run concurrently. There is a fee associated with the crowd source funding programs like Kickstarter and IndieGoGo, but whatever way is most comfortable for you. You can paypal to support at hangguy@gmail.com

It is clear to me my music offers healing to listeners and my background, spiritual practice and training as as metaphysician, healer, massage therapist and mystic from a long line of Shaman's and Seer's, is for that purpose. As I do free smudging at my booth at concerts the emotional releases, tears of joy and healing are real and is an extension of my music and spirit. 

On that note join me tonight in a live interview on "Dimensions of Spirit" on the Hey Z Radio network. You can stream live and even join in the live chat. Program runs from 6-8PM MST (Denver). The link to join and listen is http://www.heyzradio.com/listen-chat

I look forward to your questions and comments in real time. 
Thank you for your support. 

Here is a video of Double-Barrel Train Wreck from my cd A Place Called Peace. This vid is from a PBS special on my music. What a great honor. Enjoy and feel free to share. 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Is about the music or the spirit?

“My music will go on forever. Maybe it's a fool say that, but when me know facts me can say facts. My music will go on forever.” 
 Bob Marley

Final performer's concert RNAFF 2013
Greetings friends. I hope your summer has been peaceful and filled with good things. I’ve been on the road bringing my music to as many listeners as possible. In June and July I was fortunate to play at the inaugural Renaissance of the North American Flute (RNAFF) festival at the Smokey Mountain Heritage Center and hear and play with some of my favorite musicians and visit with great friends. The fest was filled with warmth and mutual support that I hope will continue to infuse future gatherings. It rained everyday but we toughed it out together. My workshop and performances were well received. My borrowed booth tent collapsed under the collected rain and many folks rushed to help me not be eaten by the tent. 

We do what we need to do as artists because we are compelled to express the inspiration and creative force within us. It’s like you sign up to be the tool and once you do it uses you and you’d better express or the energy builds up. That’s what causes the insanity, substance abuse, ill temper and depression. My audiences lately have been very open about how my music makes them feel. It seems spirituality is the number one thing people want to talk about. If my music helps take them there I’m honored. I don’t think it is anything special about me, just the creative force or source expressing more purely as I become more in inline with my soul’s purpose here in this life.

After that I headed over to North Carolina for some great gigs and to stay with two of my dear road friends Ed and Dawn. We have so much fun together eating, cooking, playing music and maybe enjoying a tasty beverage once in a while. I’m so grateful for the road friends I’ve made over the years of touring. Looking forward to even more. I did a full day in NC or a flute–playing workshop, master class, potluck and full concert. It was a great, if not long day and I loved every second of it. I always do. As musicians you have to love what you do, all of it. The grind, the touring, the fans, the questions, the lack of sleep all add up to our way of life. It is what it takes to do get your music out there to new listeners, keep current fans and make a living.

Saint Anne's Chapel
Another concert I did was in an amazing reclaimed Chapel called St. Anne’s Chapel, on a former tobacco plantation in Tarboro, NC. Here is an article: Tarboro The spirit and energy of the place was incredible. Turnout was wonderful for the space. The humidity was brutal and I could feel the sweat dripping down my back and legs. My hair used to be straight. Ha-ha. We followed the concert with a meditation during which I offered some of my unique techniques and drumming. The owners Kevin and Trish Wilson are doing a beautiful job of building a community of high consciousness in the midst of some entrained religious conservatism. Ble
ss them for that. I can’t wait to return.


I ended this tour with another visit to Handpangea near Asheville. Another great festival of hand pans with great music and a chance to renew friendships and make new friends. I led workshops on playing the flute with hand pans and using hand pans in Hospice. I especially enjoyed the Hospice workshop participation. My friend Robin Burk who recently certified in MCCT and who plays handpans was a valuable asset and offered the clinical perspective.

After some gigs in New Mexico I now find myself doing concerts in Iowa and the Chicago area with a return to the 9th annual World of Faeries Festival, which I love. Gloria and David Yeager, the WOF organizers pour their passion, energy, resources and love into this festival every year and I’m honored they’ve invited me back all these years. Please let your friends know about it. It is in S. Elgin, IL northwest Chicago area and close to Milwaukee, Indiana, Iowa etc. It is held on the Fox River in a beautiful Oak Park. Magical. The theme this year is Airship Coud 9 Steam Punk and I’ve been busy on my outfit and hat. When on the road it’s a good idea to do “Pick up gigs” to increase your chance to play for new people and hopefully increase your revenue. Be creative about price etc. If you just say I need, for instance $500 for the night venues aren’t likely to take a chance on you. If you say well let’s do a door charge with a percentage split or donation et
My homemade Steampunk Hat
c. Like I said, be creative. Make it a good experience for the venue host and don’t whine, demand or deceive. Your music will have to sell itself. I personally love the challenge of playing to a brand new audience. I’m always open to a gig in your town like a house concert, church, clubhouse etc. you name it. No venue too small in my way of thinking.

Upcoming shows:
JULY 31 - Radiant Om Yoga, 7694 Hickman Road, Windsor Heights, Iowa. 5:30 PM play for Community Yoga Class followed by concert at 7:00PM www.facebook.com/events/179144032266059/ www.radiantomyoga.com/‎ (515) 270-4820
AUGUST 2 - Batavia, IL The Holmstead, 700 W. Fabyan Pkwy. 7:00PM. Private concert.
AUGUST 3, S. Elgin, IL The World of Faeries Festival "Steam Punk" 1PM, 4:15PM Directions: http://goo.gl/maps/NzCyi

AUGUST 4, S. Elgin, IL The World of Faeries Festival "Steam Punk" 1:45PM, 4PM

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Live interview and Chat on "Spirit of Radio" tonight from 8:00-10:00PM.

Listen to a live interview visit with Randy Granger on the "Spirt of Radio" program on the HeyZRadio network tonight from 8:00 - 10:00 PM. You can be part of the chat at http://www.heyzradio.com/listen-chat. It is a program exploring the Spirt of Music and will be a great, entertaining chat with lots of music and insight into what inspires my music. 
Randy


Saturday, July 6, 2013

Returning to music and myself



Greetings friends. It has been a while since I’ve blogged here. Since last fall I had been the primary caregiver for my partner Wayne Crawford who was diagnosed with stage four pancreatic cancer and cancelled many gigs as well as put the promotion of my new album “Pura Vida-This is Pure Life” on hold. Well, Wayne passed away at home in my arms March 12 and it has been a frenzied, difficult but needed roll up that proverbial mountain like Sisyphus to get myself back in the music game so to speak. The entire journey will no doubt find its way into my music.

Interestingly I had been scheduled to perform the day Wayne passed away at the Cowboy Days Festival (I was the Indian haha) here in Las Cruces. Obviously I didn’t make that gig. I did, however, perform my scheduled slot with an extended set the next day thereby getting paid. Yay! I’m grateful that I’ve had income, very modest income, coming in through my royalties, distribution and online sales during this time. I make a large part of my musician’s income through live gig contracts and live sales. You’ve no idea just how tight an independent musician’s income is always leveraging on what you’ve contracted and expect to make at shows. Talk about faith right? My calendar has been really busy thankfully. I’ve played for the Las Cruces Art Museum, NMSU-DACC Cultural Diversity Day, some places of worship and for the Hospice Celebration Walk. This gig was particularly hard as we used Hospice in Wayne’s final weeks. His name scrolled on the screen every few minutes as I played flute music through tears, but it is all part of healing and grieving I tell myself.

Michael Graham Allen & Randy Granger
Musical Echoes Stage 2011
I was able to make a road trip out to Musical Echoes in Ft. Walton Beach, FL. Michael Graham Allen, aka Coyote Oldman, had invited me to come out and play. I was more than happy to go and saw many friends, ate copious seafood, drank too much and almost got my friends kicked out of their hotel—repeating something that happened last time I was at Native Rhythms. I mean when you start jamming it is easy to get carried away. That is my story and I’m sticking to it. I stopped in New Orleans on the return trip to visit the spirits both on Bourbon St and at the St. Louis Cemetery #1 where Marie LeVeau is buried. I saw an artist friend I hadn’t seen in a while. It was really worth the trip if not an exhausting 3,000 mile journey for a gig.

The future and the present is my focus now. The music coming through me has never stopped and I’ve loads of new music to record. I’m also back on the road returning to some familiar festivals and gigs and always willing to schedule house concerts on my trips, conduct workshops etc. Please bookmark my calendar at randygranger.net/calendar or follow on twitter @RandyGranger or join my Fan page on Facebook. I look forward to seeing you all again and meeting new friends and fans.

Some upcoming performances:
May 15, Las Cruces, NM, 7PM Young Park, 2011 International AIDS Candlelight Vigil
May 17, White Sands Natl. Monument, “Full-Moon Concert” 8:30PM, Monument Amphitheater
May 22, Albuquerque, NM, New Mexico Music Awards Banquet, 6:30PM, Hard Rock Casino.
Randy Granger nominated for Best Song in: “New Age,” “Hispanic Contemporary” and “World Beat” categories.

There are more performances on my website but I did want to mention I will be performing at the Yosemite Art and Flute Festival in Oakhurst, California on September 23-25 and am very excited about it. Before that is the SEPTEMBER 18-21, Yosemite World Music Camp! “This will be a fun and enriching experience where we can come together to learn, to share, and to play music.  We will gather at the Sierra Sky Ranch, location of the Yosemite Flute and Art Festival. During this three-day camp you will have the opportunity to move deeper into your own joy filled, musical expression with greater confidence and skill.
Our awesome teaching staff:
Scott August, world flutes and musicianship
Randy Granger, percussion and drumming
Annie Mathias, didgeridoo, Moyo drums, creative play
You will be able to participate in two class sessions each day Monday through Wednesday, with your afternoons free for exploring the area or relaxation. 

And you have the freedom of choice because: There are no class “tracks” you must follow! You may take any combination of classes! You may focus on one thing or learn a little of everything! We will also have awesome evening programs:
A Medicine Wheel Ceremony, A Sound Bath out on the lawn under the big trees
And a group jam session where we all play! Reserve Now as class space is limited: http://worldmusiccamp.org/ "Yosemite World Music Camp"

Please sign up quick because classes are limited in space.
Thank you

Friday, February 8, 2013

Alchemy as a Music Metaphor

Everyone seems to have a clear idea of how other people should lead their lives, but none about his or her own.” ― Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist

Paulo Coelho’s seminal book “The Alchemist” is a fable like story of a Sheppard boy searching for the meaning of a recurring dream. Along the journey he meets archetypes that tell him it means treasures, wealth, secrets but an alchemist reveals it is his own personal story that he must transform into the metaphor of gold. "When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it" is the core theme of the book. Coelho was met with failure and ridicule when his book was first released and after a “period of healing” so believed in his work he went door to door of publishers. This undoubtedly, his own personal transformational journey he wrote about.

Las Cruces Museum of Art Feb 1, 2013
This week I taped a short radio interview about my album Strong Medicine and also to promote an upcoming show in El Paso, TX Feb. 10. The interview is scheduled to air Feb. 9th 11:30 AM MST at www.ktep.org on a long-running program called State of the Arts. The interviewer had listened to and reviewed the new CD and had a page of notes. She is a pro and musician as well. She said to me before the interview that she is incredibly moved by this new album, paused then said, “You know Randy, you’re an alchemist.” She said I had turned so much love, pain, grief and loss into something so personal and moving that is stunned her. She shared a story about her own loss and how when her mother was battling cancer in the last stages she heard a bird singing loudly outside her window during a thunderstorm. Just then she received a call that her mother had passed. So when she heard the line in my song “Where Did You Go” about a bird singing outside a window, she knew I had been in that place too—where the artist makes the personal into the universal. Alchemy.


Las Cruces Museum of Art Feb 1, 2013
The process of writing and recording the music for Strong Medicine felt like mining, which is another metaphor for how we get gold. If you’ve any knowledge about gold mining it is messy, hard, ugly work that involves searing heat, tons of water, chemicals to extract the gold and a lot of sweat and dirt. Sometimes making art is like that too. You don’t come out of it clean, shiny and radiant. You need time to heal and recover too. It is an enormous privilege and responsibility to be given the gifts and talents to do this. You want to avoid sentimentality and cliché as much as possible. You gotta dig deep and mine that emotional core of each song in an authentic way. Listen to the interview if you get a chance. If you miss it the State of the Arts website posts past shows so you can catch it later. I only hope I was an alchemist of this music for posterity and for you, the listeners. Ultimately though, it has to be about my own, the artist’s, transformation from raw materials into something precious and worthy and my own personal transformation.


During the interview she got choked up a couple of times which is very humbling to me as she is a pro. At one point, when I mentioned my late partner’s name in reference to a lyric a speaker in the studio howled and squealed with feedback for an unknown reason. This shook us all up. The engineer piped in and said he had no idea what that was caused by and suggested we had a ghost with us. We exchanged a knowing glance. I think this will be edited out of the interview though.

Don’t forget I’m playing a full concert 3PM, Feb 10, at Grace United Methodist, 400 N. Carolina Dr, El Paso, TX. www.graceumcelpaso.org/about.html it’s Free!

Radio interview airs Feb 9 @11:30AM MST, www.ktep.org Stream live or listen after program airs at http://www.ktep.org/programs/state-arts

Peace and well being

Randy