YouTube is becoming a leading source for information and music in the world. Begin typing in relaxing music and suggestions appear and from there you can be days, weeks exploring. On YouTube, Native American flute music is becoming increasingly popular and visible. Selections range from early recordings to modern concerts featuring the flute with metal bands such as Nightwish.
A few years ago, I could have been considered as a traditional style fan of the North American flute. I listened to more of the music with only the flute, perhaps with songbirds or other natural sounds. Gradually I have looked at New Age type music incorporating the flute and have found a new world. Artist today are pushing the boundaries and yet are paying attention and respect to the past.
“Native American flutes were traditionally crafted of a wide range of materials, including wood (cedar, juniper, walnut, cherry, and redwood are common),bamboo, and river cane. Flute makers from indigenous cultures would often use anything that could be converted or made into a long hollow barrel, such as old gun barrels. Contemporary Native American flutes continue to use these materials, as well as plastics, ceramic, glass, and more exotic hardwoods such as ebony, padauk, and teak.” (Source: Wikipedia)
R Carlos Nakai
Of Navajo-Ute heritage, Nakai began playing the traditional Native American flute in the early 1980s and released more than 50 albums in his career. Nakai has earned two gold records for “Canyon Trilogy” and “Earth Spirit” and has received eleven GRAMMY nominations in four different categories and earned an Arizona Governor’s Arts Award. (R Carlos Nakai website)
November 4 – Tucson, AZ – 2PM Tucson Estates Community Center with R. Carlos Nakai Quartet Private Event
November 11 – Phoenix, AZ – 10-12PM Steele Indian School Park Solo and with AZ Territorial Band Free event in honor of WWI Indian Vets
Photo: By Hugo Ramos from Lisbon, Portugal – Image on Flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0
John Two-Hawks has earned GRAMMY® and Emmy* nominations, Platinum Awards, been featured in movies by Fox Searchlight, films by HBO, and programs by The History Channel. John Two-Hawks is a veteran recording artist with over two dozen album releases to his credit and counting. (John Two-Hawks website)
December 1st, 201816th Annual JTH Christmas Concert Featuring the Bentonvile Washington Jr. High Girls Choir “Sacred Enchantment” 7:00pm @ The AUD 36 S. Main St. Eureka Springs, AR 72632 TICKETS T.B.A.
Jay Red Eagle
Jay Red Eagle is a Native American flutist and enrolled member of Cherokee Nation. He won two Music Awards in 2006: Best Native American Artist of the Year and Native American Flutist of the Year. In 2007 Red Eagle was voted Flutist of the Year a second time. (Jay Red Eagle website)
Andrew Vasquez is a member of the Apache Tribe of Oklahoma. He has long been known as an accomplished singer and dancer and in fact toured the world with the New York based American Indian Dance Theatre. Andrew doesn’t play what are considered traditional compositions, he approaches all of his songs with a well-defined reverence and respect. He considers all flute playing a cultural contribution, be it for ceremonies, harvest, prayer, love songs or even putting children to sleep. (Andrew Vasquez website)
Two-Time GRAMMY Winner and EMMY Nominee Mary Youngblood, is the first Native American woman to have received a Grammy Award for “Best Native American Music Album” and the first Native American person to have won two Grammys which makes Mary one of the premiere Native American musicians in the country. (Mary Youngblood website)
While this selection may not be considered relaxing music, it does feature Native American flute music. I found this while doing some research and had no idea of the type of music Nightwish performs. I started and stopped, restarted so many times that when I did begin from the start and listened straight thru, I was still blown away by the music and the power of this group coming together. Please take a few moments and practice your Mindful Listening meditation with Nightwish and John Two-Hawks. (Nightwish website)
YouTube and Native American flute music are matched perfectly with relaxing music. The videos are a great mix of traditional or still scenes and with the addition of concerts or of just the artist performing solo provides a visual escape that can help in relaxation and meditation.
If this is one of the first times you have heard the flute, please let me know your thoughts. And if a long time fan, any other artist I should be listening to?
Your comments/thoughts/questions are welcomed and I will get back to you as soon as possible…