None of us who were there will forget the uplifting and inspiring Sacred Singing facilitated by JJ Middleway at the OBOD Winter Gathering. It was fabulous to hear our voices joined and also very moving to experience the power of the silence between sound. I am delighted that JJ has put together an album entitled ‘Songs for the Land’, consisting of two CD’s. One is a ‘Live’ recording from a gathering in Stroud, Feb 2015 and the other is an amalgamation of chants recorded over the last year sung by JJ & Katie, with Ali Shepherd on guitar. 10% of all sales will be going to help fund Trees for Life in planting new groves.
The double album is a unique insight into the magic and beauty of Enchanting the Void and can be purchased directly at a live event or, if needed, JJ can post by mail. For a limited period, these can be obtained for the very reasonable price of £12 in the UK & €20 for Europe (including P&P). JJ will be working on an automated and more widely available ordering system in the near future and we hope to make the album available in the OBOD online shop very soon.
Here JJ explains what Enchanting the Void – his beautiful term for this form of devotional singing – means for him:
Enchanting the Void…A western form of devotional singing, incorporating sound and silence, which might also be called an Earth Healing form of song-prayer.
It is a means of re-imagining and re-energising the land through the magic of shared sound, coupled with the healing of the charged silence which follows.
Within this ‘Enchanting the Void’ form, are the flowering seeds of a re-emergent oral tradition, spawned particularly since the 1960’s – though no doubt before – through various inspired individuals, small groups and camps. I sense the bulk of these songs as being ‘of this land’ and ‘of this time’ and a worthy Western complement to Eastern forms of devotional chanting such as Kirtan or Bhakti, which although complementary are yet distinct in flavour. They have their place here too: A bridging of east and west through sound and song.