I've been reading quite a few books on music and 'spirituality' recently,
some quite thought provoking, some bordering onto newage sewage. However, I thought
some folks might be interested in the discographies provided by some of these
works, and maybe a few of my thoughts on the books themselves. First up is the
discography from Peter Michael Hamel's Through
Music to the Self
It's been a few months since I read this book, but on the whole I'm positive about
it. I already had a real soft-spot for the kind of music PMH was making at the
time of writing this book: great cosmic synth albums like Aura
, the interesting
experiments in minimalism on Nada
, and the improvised cosmic/spiritual
jazz that his band Between put out. After that the music gets a bit samey, but
I quite like Organum
- seemingly his take on Terry Riley's incredible
Persian Surgery Dervishes
Reflecting on the book the things that stick in my mind are his discussion of
the use of vowels and overtone singing, descriptions of hippy theatre troupes
and a rather neat little primer on how to listen to and appreciate Indian classical
music. Unfortunately I only borrowed a copy, but I'lll be adding it to my bookshelf
and re-reading it presently. In the meantime, here's the discography from the
end of the book - bear in mind it was written in 1979, but there might be a couple
of gems you've overlooked in there:
Items known to be currently unavailable outside Germany, or available
only as imports, are marked (G).
Maurice Ravel: orchestral works and piano pieces.
Alexander Scriabin: 'Piano Pieces'
Bela Bartók: Violin Concerto 1938; Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta;
Second and Third Piano Concertos.
Charles Ives: 'Five Symphonies'
Olivier Messiaen: 'Les Corps Glorieux' for organ; 'Et exspecto...' and 'Colours
of the Celestial City', two orchestral works.
Carl Orff: 'De Temporum Fine Comoedia' (G)
Karlheinz Stockhausen: 'Hymnen' for orchestra and electronics (G); 'Stimmung'
for 6 vocalists (G); 'Mantra' for two pianos (G).
Karlheinz Stockhausen: 'Aus den Sieben Tagen' (G); 'Goldstaub' (G)
'wired' - Rant, Lewis, Böttner
(in boxset 'Free Improvisation') (G)
Psychedelic Pop Music
'Ummagumma'. Double LP by the group Pink Floyd.
'Karma', by Pharaoh Sanders (G)
The Musicaphon Bärenreiter
UNESCO collection has brought out innumerable and excellent recordings: from
Africa, Asia and the whole world. Additionally the following specialities
Tibet: 'Tantric Rtual'. Gyoto Monastery.
'Chants Mongols'. Mongolian chanting and folk music.
'ZEN. Sound and Silence'. Recordings from a Japanese Zen monastery.
Gamelan-music: Boxsets of music from Bali and Java. Indian music:
'Imrat Khan - Nordindische Ragas live' (G).
'Nikhil Banerjee - Nordindische Ragas auf Sitar' (G).
'South Indian Vocal and Instrumental Music'.
Music from the Morning of the World (Balinese Gamelan).
Buddhist Chant (Japanese temple ritual). Islamic Liturgy.
A Night at the Taj (Vilayat and Imrat Khan).
A Persian Heritage (Classical music of Iran).
The Ten Graces on the Vina (Music of South India).
Master of the Sarangi (Ram Narayan).
'Music for Zen-Meditation' with Tony Scott, clarinet and Japanese musicians.
'Tibetan Bells'. 'Buddhist Meditation East-West'. Chants by Tibetan Lamas
and electronic mantra-music by P. M. Hamel (G).
'Karuna Supreme'. Ali Akbar Khan, sarod, and John Handy, alto-saxophone (G).
Spiritual Jazz 'Love Supreme' and 'Om' by John Coltrane.
'Humus' by Don Cherry.
Spiritual Pop Music
Third Ear Band: 'Alchemy' and '4 Elements'
Paul Horn, flute: 'Inside'.
'Hesse Between Music'. A 'poetry-and-music-production' with texts by Herman
Hesse and music by the group Between (G).
Soft Machine: 'III - Moon in June'.
Electronic Pop Music
Tangerine Dream: 'Phaedra' and 'Rubycon'.
Klaus Schulze: 'Timewind' and 'Irrlicht' (G).
Michael Hoenig: 'Hanging Garden Transfer' (G).
Sacred Pop Music
Popol Vuh: 'Seligpreisungen' and 'Hosianna-Mantra' (G).
Minimal Music - Periodic Music from the U.S.A.
Terry Riley: 'A Rainbow in Curved Air'; 'Happy Ending'; 'The Persian Surgery
Steve Reich: 'Drumming'.
Author's Own Compositions (all G)
'HAMEL', 'The Voice of Silence'. 'Einstieg', 'And the Waters Opened', 'Dharana',
'Contemplation', 'Nada', all with the group Between.
The Wired track mentioned above, under 'Psychedelic Avant Garde' is available on WMFU's On the Download
along with other recordings from the Deutsche Grammohophon triple LP, Free Improvisation