10th ANNUAL MUSIC LINEUP Music change lives, it’s an art that wakes up the creative part of our being!! Music at Yoga Jam is as varied as the yoga offerings.There’s something for everyone, from Hip-Hop to get down dancing Americanna, Kirtan & Dj sets at the end of the evening in the Boogie Down Dance Hall.
Sean Johnson & The Wild Lotus Band
New Orleans’ Seán Johnson & The Wild Lotus Band create a universal style of spiritual music that merges conscious lyrics, sacred chants from around the world, and roots, rock, gospel, and global grooves — expressed through the depth, authenticity, and sincerity of their own American and ancestral roots.
In 2005, Seán founded the band as a post-hurricane Katrina philanthropic music project, raising funds across the country for relief from the devastation of the storm. The theme of searching for grace and inspiration amidst challenge and destruction has permeated their music ever since. Known for creating interactive, soul-stirring songs to dance and sing along with, as well as to grieve and heal, their music has been embraced around the globe.
Inclusion on three Putumayo World Music albums has helped propel the band’s music to listeners across the globe. Their last album ‘Unity’ debuted #1 on the iTunes World Music Chart and #3 on Billboard. Their upcoming album ‘Mystery’ will be released in October 2021 on Be Still Records. They are a favorite headliner at conscious music festivals across the U.S. and have played the hallowed stages of The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival on multiple occasions.
The band features vocalist/lyricist/harmonium player Seán Johnson; Alvin Young on six string fretless bass and electric guitar; and percussionist/vocalist Gwendolyn Colman. For the Floyd Yoga Jam’s 10th Anniversary, they’ll be joined by multi-instrumentalist Chris Rosser (bass, guitar, keys, and oud) and Narada Wise on drums.
Part devotional chanting practice and part spiritual music jam, David Newman and friends fuse mantra and modern lyricism together for an experience grounded in tradition and steeped in love. Explore letting your inhibitions go and throwing your voice to the wind; how sweet the surrender. Feel everyone coming together with a mutual message of love, a tangible elevated vibration, and see how that shift can be cultivated in your own daily life and brought out into the world around you. Live. Love. Chant.
Seated in southern Appalachia, Laura Beth and Clover Hollow embody the authentic roots music that surround them while producing a signature sound that is original, sharp and refreshing – blues-rock, bluegrass, old time, and old-school-country all meld together into the soul of their music.
Laura Beth and Clover Hollow members have an immediate and unique chemistry that is reflected how their talents groove together. It’s easy to hear in their successful debut cd, The Mill Sessions – recorded live in an old grain mill in southwest VA. Laura Beth’s songwriting is authentic and smooth and her vocals will cut straight through to your heart. Together, these top-notch musicians transport you to whisky weeping heartbreak to quiet introspection to rhythm stomping anthems of revelry.
Inspired and skillful leads are offered up by Chris Printz (mandolin), Chris Burgoyne (guitar), and Joe Abercrombie (banjo and dobro), while John Munsell (string bass) holds up the groove. Laura Beth sings lead, plays rhythm guitar and writes the tunes that are now staples far beyond their hometown of Blacksburg, VA.
You can stream or download Clover Hollow tunes from your favorite digital music platform. Follow our music link: http://cloverhollow.hearnow.com
Vintage guitars and throwback threads remind you of another era, but these tunes are for the here and now. Kat Mills has made records, won awards, and worked with big names, but she really just loves to play for the people. Join Kat for a relaxing, inspiring set—and sing along! www.katmills.com
I am a 14-year-old from the Charlotte area of NC. I have been playing guitar since I was 9 years old, but before that I was on the piano. I’ve been singing since I can remember. I like to play all kinds of music, but I tend to lean more toward festival music and the classic rock genres. I also write and play mine own music. I try not to put a particular style on the music that I do. I just play stuff that moves me and others. I like things with good rhythm, nice guitar riffs, and powerful lyrics. Some of my favorite artists include: Daniel Rodriguez, Ryan Montbleau The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Trevor Hall…just to name a few.
Spotify Link: https://open.spotify.com/artist/3Zep24BU7bOIw5iMjpw9BJ
Youtube Link: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwb75u92g2BqXbSm3EzLftQ
I have been playing monthly at the Davidson farmers market since April 2019. I have been able to play at the Knight Theater in Charlotte NC two separate times (once at age 10, and again at 13) for the Tosco Music Party. Video here from the 2019 Music Party : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lg0nn1Z1HBo I have played for the Hotel Floyd Concert series every year since 2017. This year, 2019, I won a youth scholarship to the Swannanoa Gathering in Black Mountain NC, which I have attended since I was 10 years old. I have also had the pleasure of being invited to play on stage with Ryan Montbleau and MC Yogi.
I have dreams to play a few places. Red Rocks, and The Orange Peel are on that list.
is founded by multi-instrumentalists Laney Sullivan and Jameson Price. Fusing together the pulse of drone pop, worldly instrumentation, this experimental music would best be described as a landscape, as a biome all its own. This musical phenomenon has come to be known as, Earth folk, a type of music inspired thematically by the natural environment: flora, fauna, soil, stars, and the human experience. From harmonium engulfed melodies to mouth-harp stomp grass, Høly River taps into an embodied and innate celebration of internal and external worlds, attempting to bring them closer together with each beat. On record or in-person, a listener is entranced in the soaring vocal ballads bathed the in moonlight of dance beats and folk-inspired roots. The music of Høly River carries the message of humanity’s need for reconnection with itself and the earth. Mystically political and wholeheartedly grassroots this DIY band finds themselves playing on large festival stages as well as backyard fire pits of intentional communities around the world
Erica Joy Olsen (Mama Joy Rising)
Musician/Singer/Songwriter/Recording Artist from Baltimore Maryland.
Martier Sound Meditation
“Life-long musicians, the Martiers bring professionalism and sweetness to their calling as sound healers.”
A Sound Journey experience with Laura and Dan Martier is unlike any other of its kind. The Martiers have been collaborating artistically for 35 years and combine a wealth of experience and passion. This, along with a deep love for each other and a need to serve, is communicated through their musical and spiritual offerings. Laura Martier is a Sound Healer, Gong Master, professional vocalist and musician, certified yoga teacher, owner of The Well Yoga Co-op, and freelance writer who uses her gifts in order to bring an authentic expression of her heart into the world. Laura has studied with Gong Master Don Conreaux, Shanti Sounds Costa Rica, Jai Uttal and many others.
Dan Martier is a professional musician, drummer for Tim Reynolds and TR3 and Gong Master who brings the Yang to Laura’s Yin. Their experience is evident in each symphonic immersion, using voice, hang drum, gongs, crystal bowls and more with deft precision, professionalism and beauty. Laura’s voice has been described as “Angelic” and “otherworldly” and “Close to The Veil”. With perfect pitch and a smooth honeyed tone, her improvisations and beautiful melodies melt into the crystal tones of her singing bowls, or while accompanying herself on guitar and perfectly complement Dan’s sensitive Hangdrum playing. Together they will take you on a heart centered journey through vibration, music, word and sound straight from the heart.
Kennedy Oneself – Symphonic orchestration of acoustic vibration!!
Aupaya & the Solar Music Suitcases
Come hang out and make some music with Aupaya. He’ll be roaming the site with his solar magikal music suitcases!!
The best way to describe Scott Varney is as a modern day one-man band with the Solo bass stylings of Victor Wooten, Funk Folk edge of Ani Difranco and the one man band jams of Keller Williams all wrapped up into one. Scott has been described by some fans as a “funky version of Jack Johnson”. Scott brings this sound together with his vocals, six string bass guitar, drums, Keys and various percussion instruments with one characteristic element of his live performance, “Looping” his vocals and instruments to create the sound of a full band. Hear Scott perform a mix of original music along with some original interpretations of some familiar cover songs.
Garth Robertson Sacred Sound-
I’ve been making music and using sound as a modality for self healing for over 20 years. Throughout my journey, I’ve received the message that sound can be used for physical, mental & spiritual healing. Song can do more than excite the nervous system with danceable energy or revisit a cherished memory; it can be used to help move energy through the body and alleviate stagnation and blockage.
A meditative trip to Peru solidified my decision of stepping onto this path. There was much time to sit with my thoughts in the jungle, and they always came back to offering this service. During this time I was able to observe and learn from the healing work of a strong linage of Curanderos that heal with Sound.
I’m open to expanding even further into the whole with this work, offering the opportunity for people to heal themselves with this Modality.
Won’t you join me?
Joe Troop (from Che Apalache)
Joe Troop is a multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter from Winston-Salem, North Carolina. During his decade in Buenos Aires, Argentina, he formed the group Che Apalache with three of his students. The band’s second album, Rearrange My Heart, was produced by legendary genre-bender, banjoist Béla Fleck and received a GRAMMY nomination for Best Folk Album in 2020. Unfortunately, the pandemic has made international touring all but impossible, forcing CheApalache into hiatus.
Working in a style dubbed “latingrass,” Joe melds music from the Appalachian foothills with traditional soundscapes from across Latin American. He composes wry and well-traveled acoustic music, sung in English and Spanish. Wrenching old-time music into the world of contemporary global politics, Joe creates spaces for sympathy, solidarity, and a little humor. His new solo album featuring Charlie Hunter, Béla Fleck and Abigail Washburn, Tim O’Brien and many more superb musicians will be released in late summer.
Jake is a musician living in Floyd, Virginia. His style blends poetry and storytelling with folk and rock fundamentals. This, combined with palpable lyricism, distinct vocals, and a unique left-handed style of guitar playing, make for a striking delivery.
Nicomedez Calhoun, professionally know as Nickie Calhoun an American Singer/Songwriter and Musician. Hailing from the small town of Eagle Rock, VA. Nickie is known for her massive yet soothing vocals and gorgeous guitar instrumentation. Alongside her travels and collaborations with vaious music artists,music producers, and live performances, Nickie Calhoun is proud to present her released album “Heart of Slate”/
The Bhakti Boyz blend modern technology and traditional instruments to make lighthearted, beat driven music based on the Bhakti Yoga/Kirtan tradition. The Bhakti Boyz are: Phil Boyce, Anthony Haro, Gabe Gavin, and special appearances with Will Rezin.
COCOBOLO, a Southwest Virginia based music duo, tailors its show to any stage with clear vocals, original, story based lyrics, intricate guitar leads and weaving rhythms that combine into something truly unique. This inspired pair brings to you an irresistible mix of acoustic tunes that are soulful and gritty. From the well known music hub of Floyd County, Virginia, comes Singer/Songwriter Stella Trudel (vocals, guitar) and Bob Dillard (guitar, vocals) for an astonishing blend of imagination, years of late night writing, thousands of practice hours, and a shared love of sound that solidly adds up to creativity at it’s best. You’ll be glad you stopped to listen!
Nate Kretzschmar (DJ Mediator) has been a devoted audiophile and musician since his teenage years in the 80’s and 90’s. He has played in many diverse bands, exploring underground rock, jazz, reggae, and world music in the process. As a radio DJ in college he developed his passion for seeking out hidden treasures from music’s past, as well as ground breaking future sounds, and as DJ Mediator he continues to curate excellent global dance music and bring it to new audiences. Specializing in artists that fuse electronic production techniques with traditional roots from the African diaspora, South America, and Asia, his mission is to find and share this music with people who would otherwise be unlikely to hear it, not claim it as his own- be the mediator and bring more exposure to many great artists who deserve to be heard
Underground Swamis are a duo on a mission to spread love through intimate house concerts and yoga + live music classes. They share mantra music and creative rhymes in support of a positive, free, and healthy culture.
Lockdown can’t stop a Swami! 2020 was steady stream of live music, yoga gigs, and custom song recordings for private clients. In September they headlined the International Day of Peace in Hagerstown, MD – an interfaith gathering of music from a variety of religious traditions.
Blues Rock Band
Nadirah Wright and Rob met as co-workers in a helping profession. We discovered a mutual love of music and a love of laughter. Our boss discovered the music part and the next thing we know we are performing at Elmwood Park for the company picnic. For YogaJam our plan is to perform a number of covers from the 60’s to the present that we enjoy. Our hope is that you enjoy them as well.
DAN Porter & William Harriston- are Floyd County musicians who are gaining surging public appeal and popularity from their performances at Southwest Viriginia venues. An electric guitar duet offering unique arrangements of popular covers including the Grateful Dead. Rolling Stones, America, Van Morrison, Pink Floyd, Credence, Elvis, and the Beatles , to mention a few. Interspersed with Dan’s originals that resonate Reggae, Funkadelic rock and Mystical overtones. Both William and Dan have deep musical roots that draw from experiences as touring musicians and Sonic Alchemists
Mighty Joshua & The Zion 5
Independent Reggae Artist Mighty Joshua engages audiences by opening minds and activating bodies through song. Conscious lyrics flow freely to create distinctive refrains that pulse with pride against rhythms rooted in percussion. His soulful exploration in the evolution of sound creates an expression of reggae for the modern day.
Virginia Reggae Ambassador Mighty Joshua advocates for reggae music by sharing his love of the genre and culture with meaningful performances for the masses. Mighty Joshua’s self-titled debut solo album is a life inspired compilation that encourages reflection and empowerment for oneself, community, and beyond. The official “Mighty Joshua” video has aired on Virginia Currents, and his music video for the single “Clean Hands” premiered on Reggaeville..
Mighty Joshua plays in a multitude of arrangements including high energy live performances with support of his back-up band the Zion #5 and at times an acoustic configuration. From mountain top festivals, to intimate club gigs, he invites listeners of all ages to experience the spirit of reggae.
His musical roots in African percussion led to experimenting with sound and rhythm. Soon after exposure to Djembe and Djun Djun drums they became a part of his playing repertoire which also includes the Didgeridoo. Mighty Joshua played percussion and supplied backing vocals for Corey Harris albums Father Sun, Mother Earth and Fulton Hill Blues and has opened for several internationally acclaimed reggae acts including Steel Pulse, Culture w/ Kenyatta Hill, the Meditations, the Itals, and Ziggy Marley.
Mighty Joshua is a member of the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers. The not-for-profit performance-rights organization is a diverse family of music creators representing many voices, but are united in their mission to make the world a better place with music. When he’s not living the life of a professional musician, Joshua enjoys integrating music for social awareness and celebrating the impact individuals can make.
Looping diverse instrumental sounds on her synth with ethereal, crystalline vocals, singer/songwriter Annabeth works in a similar folk-pop milieu as artists like Feist, Regina Spektor, and Enya. Her debut album, Extra Orchard, was picked up by French record label What a Mess! Records and she went on to tour nationally and across Europe.
Born in Harrisonburg, VA to Irish immigrant parents, Annabeth McNamara penned her first song on guitar at age 13, eventually releasing her first folk recordings on banjo as a freshman in college. Before graduating, she’d release several more EP’s: Daphne’s Nest and Bird and the Bee, a live album and an album with her sweetheart “The Wild Harmony”, and an album titled Folks of the Dark and Still Lake with a French producer “Vincent Stockholm” under the project name “This is Alaska.” After living in France three years, she came home to Virginia and won the House Artist Grant, working with a large team in the nation’s capital to create her album “Surprise,” which charted on iTunes top 100. She then went on to found a girl-band with her back-up musicians, and they went on to successfully fund-raised their self-titled album “Larkspur” on Kickstarter. Inspired and empowered by crowd-funding, Annabeth began her own Patreon page with the goal to record one song per month. After two years, she has two albums in the works thanks to the direct support of her super-fans. She is currently devoted to living in harmony with nature and her higher Self, while channeling the muse in a vibrant state of flow.
Soul/rock/reggae artist The Ambassador stands out among others by displaying a strong, soulful vocal presence combined with addictive, upbeat rhythms. His music flows seamlessly from stock reggae beats to bluesy grooves infused with rock and hip-hop. The Ambassador couples catchy hooks and danceable music with intelligent lyrics and a positive message bringing fans of all ages and walks of life. The high-energy performances will keep you bouncing hours after the show’s end.
The Ambassador is Stephen Gabriel Lewis, a Virginia native that has performed and recorded with some of the finest reggae/rock musicians from Southern California to Southwest Virginia, sharing the stage with acts like Midnite, the Wailers, Steel Pulse, Stick Figure, Xavier Rudd, Mike Pinto, The Movement and more. As a follow up to the full-length release “New Roots”, nominated “World Music Album of the Year” at the San Diego Music Awards, The Ambassador’s long-awaited studio effort entitled “Cali Love” was released in late 2018. As can be heard in the uptempo single “Powerful Love” with Pato Banton, this latest work features musicianship from a diverse group of San Diego area session players from bands like Elektric Voodoo, Psydecar, SDIB, Southtown Generals and the legendary Wailing Souls. The Ambassador continues to perform both acoustically and with his band Chosen Few at select venues and intends to bring good vibes and inspiration to all who listen.
The Dead Reckoning
Founded in 2016, The Dead Reckoning is a bundle of professional musicians from VA who love and perform Grateful Dead, and Dead inspired music. Dead Reckoning shows have quickly become a prime destination for lovers of GD-centric music.
Jim Lord & Friends
Jim Lord is an American folk/rock singer/songwriter and musician. He has toured nationally and internationally. He moved to London in 1974 to explore the folk music scene. While there, he performed throughout Britain as a headliner and also shared the bill with such artists as Bert Jansch, Tim Hardin and Elvis Costello. After returning to the United States, Lord shared the bill with such artists as Richie Havens, The Rowan Brothers, Sonny Terry & Brownie McGhee, Sam & Dave, Vassar Clements, Albert King and Brewer & Shipley, among others.
Lord’s first album “Inside Out”, produced by former Fugs’ guitarist Ken Pine and released on the Inlet Records label, was a Billboard Magazine Top Billboard Album Pick (recommended LP). Lord’s second album “Hangdog Heaven”, released on the Blue Vinyl Records label and produced by Ken Pine and Larry Gates, was characterized by the New York Post as a “…dozen-song man-and-a-guitar disc [that] freely crosses the borders of folk rock, contemporary country and old-fashioned jazz guitar.”
Kasey "Cave Man" Jones
Kasey “CaveMan” Jones began as a multi-instrumentalist and musician in his early teens. He first discovered West African music and the Djembe while attending a drum circle being hosted by Bill Scheidt of then, Living Rhythms, back in 2007. Discovering an inner passion for drumming, Kasey has been an aspiring Djembefola ever since. Having attended lessons and workshops from many masters of West African music, he completed Bill’s Drummer Instructor Training course in 2013 to become a Certified Associate Instructor with Tam Tam Mandingue Winston Salem, and later a Beginner Djembe Instructor for Tam Tam Mandingue Djembe Academy. Kasey currently resides in Floyd, VA where he can be found orchestrating drum circles, teaching workshops, classes and giving private lessons in the local community through the HoloRhythm Community Drum School founded in 2013. The CaveMan can also be seen up and down the east coast at music festivals teaching workshops and facilitating drum circles throughout the year.
Gershone & Freeman
Gershine is based out of Athens/Atlanta, Gershone chants/sings to spread Light through Sacred Sounds…Chanting sacred mantras & songs in Sanskrit, English, and Hebrew… facilitating sound healing experiences for expanding our self expression and connecting to the source.
In 2015, he spent six weeks in northern India to simply dip his toes into Indian classical music, and returned inspired to share his love of Kirtan to all across the nation!
He has played all over the United States, and events in Canada, Brazil, India, Thailand and Bali.
Gershone has played with David Newman, Wah!, Mayapuris, Girish, Flavia Krshna, and Ananda Rasa Kirtan.
Freeman is an artist and composer from Elberton, Georgia who is rooted in devotional music and involved with a variety of musical communities. He is currently a student in Qawwali tabla of Aminah Chishti, in Balinese gamelan gong kebyar and gender wayang of I Gusti Komin Darta and in forró of Bill Lucas. He is also the instructor of the Balinese gamelan ensemble Chandra Natha at the University of Georgia.
CassiRaye is an artist whose creative vision is as expansive as her soul. Strongly influenced by her southern roots, the singer and multi-instrumentalist captivates audiences with her earthy, sensual voice, and her intimate original songs. Her music–a unique blend of folk, pop, and world music–continues to find its way into hearts across North and South America. CassiRaye has been a featured performer at music festivals and concert venues throughout the eastern US, including Floyd Yoga Jam, Culturefest, and BuddhaFest. She is currently supporting her second album Wake (2019). Beyond music and art, she finds inspiration in nature, good tea, and quality time with beloved friends and family.
Funk, Soul, Rock, Roots
Kirtan, Musical Mantras-
Amah Devi is a Bhakti yoga teacher from Asheville, NC known for her frank and
authentic approach to eastern philosophy . From teaching mantra-infused hatha-yoga classes, harmonium and mantra workshops, to leading spirited Kirtans in yoga studios & on festival stages, she has been all over the world sharing the power of mantra as medicine since 2011.
Justin Trawick & The Common Good
Justin Trawick has been performing in the Washington DC area and along the East Coast since 2006, citing musical influences like Bob Schneider, Greensky Bluegrass, The Tallest Man on Earth, G. Love, Old Crow Medicine Show, and David Gray. In February of 2014, Trawick won “Song of the Year” at the Washington Area Music Awards for his solo recording of “All the Places That I’ve Been,” which can be downloaded on iTunes as a single along with his five other solo records and EPs. In June of 2015, Trawick released his first single, “Goodbye,” under the band name “Justin Trawick and the Common Good,” written about the search for direction and belonging in a world that always feels one step ahead of you. In January of 2018, “Justin Trawick and The Common Good” released their first EP, “The Riverwash EP,” which features Norah Jones’ guitarist Adam Levy. In 2020 the band released the single “Back of the Line” during the coronavirus quarantine and was featured on Reuters, CNN, Al Jazeera, Washington Post, Washingtonian Magazine, Parade Magazine, American Songwriter Magazine, Voice of America and Virginia Living Magazine for Trawick’s livestream series and secret backyard concert series created during the pandemic.
The Get Right Band
“The Get Right Band are the type of performers that you just know will break out.
Their songs are infectious and take you immediately to a place. The lyrics are smart and bear weight.”
– The Huffington Post
The Get Right Band is a psychedelic indie rock power trio from Asheville, NC. They are a band focused on following their muses to honest self-expression, to whatever excites them and pushes them into unexplored territory. The Get Right Band proudly carries the torch for a long line of genre-bending power trios from Cream to The Jimi Hendrix Experience to The Police to Violent Femmes to Primus to Green Day to Nirvana to Sublime. It’s the space between the notes, the rawness and the maneuverability, that makes a power trio, well, so damn powerful.
Music Road Co
Join Music Road CO, a cooperative of common creative companions conspiring to command your cognitive locomotion.
This crew digs through a wide and deep catalog of tunes and musical traditions to get you groovin’ and your hip bones movin’!!
Where does Music Road Co find its inspiration? And why does it connect so perfectly with audiences of all ages and backgrounds? The answer might lie in their widespread roots. Coming from such diverse places as South Africa, Ecuador, Key West, Maryland and Virginia, the band brings many cultural influences together to produce music without boundaries.
Moving fluidly from funk to reggae, rock to afrobeat, their sound bounces from blues and soul to island dance and back again, bound together by one common ideal: Music should feel good and spread positive vibes. They get on stage to lift themselves up to a higher frequency and they won’t stop until they bring the entire audience with them.
The Silas Frayser Band
The Silas Frayser Band (Charlottesville, VA) is an acoustic rock/jam grass band. The band consists of Silas Frayser (vocals and acoustic guitar), Rob Frayser (vocals and mandolin), Blanks Blankinship (vocals and bass guitar), and Justin Shifflet (drums). Fans have described the band as a fun dance along experience.
Alicia B & The Now * Folk, Soul –
Hear her Solo or with guest musicians.
I (Shelley) have been playing music, singing, and teaching yoga for years. When my love of Bhakti Yoga and music combined, Localokah Kirtan was formed. It is a crazy world, indeed.
My friends Dani Fiore and Megan Woodland Hewitt have been playing with me and making this experience full of love and devotion!
We offer heartfelt original mantra music, with English lyrics blended with ancient Sanskrit Mantra. We blend singer-songwriter style of music with tradition Eastern and Western elements, including acoustic guitar, harmonium, djembe or cajon, and handpan. We believe that the ripple of love that exudes from a Kirtan can be felt around the world!
A soulful, beautiful transmission of the Divine…Mystical Kirtan with Mirabai Moon offers a passionate embrace of the Divine Essence right here, right now… just as you are. Mirabai’s immensely versatile and powerfully expressive voice takes listeners on a journey into the heart space.
“Mirabai Moon is a Kirtan soul angel who uplifts the Spirit. Her voice is exquisitely tuned and her warmth fills your heart. Don’t miss her!” Gary Goldberg, In The Spirit Radio
Henry Hardt's Mudcats
Henry Hardt’s Mudcats play old time street-blues style songs, reveling in music penned earlier in the 20th century, from Charlie Pool to The Reverend Gary Davis to Robert Johnson.
Star City Soul Club – Roanoke, VA
There’s a reason why Michael McNamara is known as DJ Boomerang, in his almost three decades as a DJ, his musical inspiration and his own trail of influence he’s left on others have spanned far and wide, but have always come back full circle to what’s really the source of his creative force: positive, conscious, and uplifting message music. A mysterious, analog soul existing in what’s largely today a digital world, Boomerang still prefers to carry and spin crates of vinyl. While a legendary and influential figure to many, those that were there and know, without much out there in the form of online photos, mixes, or media, these words you are reading are some of the first to capture and put his story out there.
McNamara’s early influences were late ’80s punk rock and golden era hip-hop, groups like Public Enemy, Dead Kennedys, KRS1, and others, that spoke to social and political justice issues of the times, which in our cyclical nature constantly resurface today. Like many, McNamara’s curious spirit would lead him to look into the influences behind these groups: funk breaks, social justice poetry, jazz, and soul, digging a decade back into ’70s artists such as Gil Scott Heron and Brian Jackson, Sly & Family Stone, The Last Poets, Coltrane, Miles Davis, Donald Byrd, Nina Simone, Stevie Wonder, James Brown, Bob Marley and the Wailers, and so on. By the ’90s, the jazzy conscious hip-hop of Tribe, De La Soul, Jungle Brothers, Arrested Development, Spearhead (Michael Franti) combined all of his early influences with an even stronger message of unity. For McNamara, the art form of dance became a liberating expression and a way to “work it out,” leaving societal pressures, stigmas, and barriers behind and offering experiences that serve as a safe space free from judgment and a reprieve from the grind.
It was ’94 in Steamboat, Colorado and Denver that McNamara began DJing, adding more disco, dance-rock, house, and world music to his budding hip-hop, soul, jazz, and funk record collection. The hybrid fusion of styles that would become known as acid jazz would serve as a comfortable meeting point and sonic melting pot for him and his many influences. Forever occupying a space between two worlds, Boomerang would also learn to bridge the gap between the live jam band scene of the mountains and the club/electronica scene of the city. Denver would help shape DJ Boomerang’s love for house, introducing him to Mark Farina, Sunshine and Moonbeam of Dubtribe, Doc Martin, Derrick Carter, and King Britt.
Boomerang would return to Florida in the mid ’90s where he’d become a cultural force in his own right, laying his seeds of influence that would expand across the state. His DJ residencies included The Rubb (the late River Phoenix’ club in Ybor run by his family), which often had 2000 people through the door on weekend nights and New World Brewery, where he was the first live entertainment alongside Jask and started his New World Collective production company. But perhaps his most infamous period would come 2 years later in ’98 with the opening of Budious Maximus in St. Pete, where he would host the likes of Dixon, DJ Harvey, Carl Craig, Three, Jori Hulkkonen, Sadar Bahar, the Idjut Boys, Rasoul, members of the SF Wicked Crew, Rob Paine, and many more for raucous, debaucherous parties.
With the turn of the century, Boomerang’s touch would extend to South Florida with a residency at the roaming Aquabooty parties, Nikki Beach, and Chris Blackwell from Island records’ Marlin Hotel, including many golden era years of Winter Music Conference parties. Escaping back into the mountains, Boomerang would move to Canada, specifically Nelson, British Columbia, a hippie arts and culture mecca of the North West, where he’d wind up DJing the Shambhala Music Festival. His nomadic adventures continued and would take him to an Idaho ski town, holding many residencies and unique events that included an annual Roller Boogie in the park, alongside other outdoor community gatherings and festivals. Eventually, he’d make his way back to Florida in 2011 — aside from a brief 2 year stint in San Francisco — where he would reignite the original ethos of St. Pete with his Sunshine City Disco outfit and Open House Conspiracy residency, bringing and collaborating on events with Bosq, Tony Humphries, François K, King Britt, Mystic Bill, Robert Owens, Recloose, Luv*Jam, Rick Wade, and Jus-Ed. His weekly extended sets at a speakeasy style back patio dubbed Exit Bar lead to many nights that would go down in infamy, including winning the accolade of “winner of the late-night tiny patio party” from Canadian band, Broken Social Scene, after accidentally bleeding into their set next door at Jannus.
The massive shift that was 2020 has called Boomerang to the mountains again, trading the Sunshine City in for the Star City, making Roanoke, Virginia his home base. What does the future hold? Who knows, but bet any of the many places he’s left his mark could always see him swing back around.
Phil Reed Boyce
Phil Reed Boyce is a Bhakti Yoga musician who performs solo and in collaboration with others under the name The Sharanam Project. Phil’s music and goals are deeply influenced by his monastery Zen Buddhist training but manifested (perhaps paradoxically) in the devotional music of the Hindu Bhakti movement. Phil lives in both Charlottesville, VA and Brooklyn, NY and focuses on small, participatory performances that seek to experience the power of brahmananda through collective singing.
Nadirah and Rob Mulhausermet as co-workers in a helping profession. We discovered a mutual love of music and a love of laughter. Our boss discovered the music part and the next thing we know we are performing at Elmwood Park for the company picnic. For YogaJam our plan is to perform a number of covers from the 60’s to the present that we enjoy. Our hope is that you enjoy them as well.