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Sacha Huasi Ayahuasca Music

Artists: Jan-Frank Gerards and Arno Adelaars

 

Jan-Frank and Arno have accompanied shamans during their ceremonies in all corners of the world, from Nepal to Peru, from Canada to Brazil. They have drummed into the night with many tribes, like Kamsá, Kofán and Kogi. Since 2002 Jan-Frank and Arno have played together in Ayahuasca ceremonies. With a frequency of 30 ceremonies per year that means an estimated 500 nights. Many of these nights took place at the Sacha Huasi maloca, hence the name of this album.

 

In the last couple years Arno picked up the habit of recording the ceremonies, but only for their own use, when trying to remember a certain melody or rhythm the next day. Jan-Frank wasn’t too eager to take their music out of the maloca and into the studio. It was Bart’s story and his connection to the music that won him over. In the end it’s all about trust. They wondered if they would be able to play as inspired without ayahuasca. In fact, they brought some brew to the studio, but it turned out that wasn’t necessary. As always they let go of any expectations and simply did as they do in the maloca. All tracks were recorded in one take and the audio has barely been touched up, to make the music feel and sound as close as possible to a real ceremony.

 

The parts in between the tracks are recordings from the amazon: sounds of the jungle and shamans from Peru who explain how ayahuasca is harvested and cooked and what kind of songs are used during this process. These sounds are a selection made available by Gerrit Kalsbeek from a vast archive of recordings from the Amazon that he made on his travels.

 

Note: for safety reasons the name of shaman of the Sacha Huasi maloca and its location are not revealed.

 

Sacha Huasi Ayahuasca Remixes

Artists: Arno Adelaars, Jan-Frank Gerards and Bart Engel

 

The idea of recording the ayahuasca music and making a remix of it had been on Bart’s mind for two years. One night he heard Arno play the mouth harp and started imagining how he would use this as a sample, like he had done with a lot of indigenous and world music as a producer. ‘I thought: put a beat under it and you have a dancefloor filler.’

 

Every track has been used for a remix, or rather: a rework. It’s an interpretation of how Bart perceives the music during the ceremony. In this process Bart found out that Arno and Jan-Frank use, purely on intuition, a lot of polyrhythms, which is a 3:4 or 6:8 beat. This brings layers into the music and stimulates the imagination. Bart is quite certain that it explains how the music can pull you into the experience. To emphasize this feeling he has added more polyrhythms by weaving arpeggiators and delays through each other in the remixes.

 

The voice at the beginning and end of the remixes is Bruce Parry, a documentary filmmaker, known for his films with Indigenous Peoples around the world. The sample comes from, “Ayahuasca - a short film” (free on youtube) which is an outtake of the film, “Tawai, a voice from the forest”. See homepage for a link to Bruce's video.