Friday, April 28, 2006

NEW FIRE nominated for NAMMY award!

New Fire has been nominated for a Native American Music award (NAMMY) in in the Native Heart category. The NAMMY awards are the Grammy's of Native American traditional, contemporary and Native inspired music. It is a great honor to be nominated.

All nominees were voted upon by the national Advisory members of the Native American Music Awards and chosen among the 150 national contemporary and traditional music recordings originally submitted for nomination consideration. Winners of the Eighth Annual Native American Music Awards will be determined through membership print ballots and a national voting campaign open to the general public on the Nammy's website.

Yes, the voting is open to the public, so you too can vote for New Fire. To do so go to

Once at their web site:
  • click on VOTE
  • click on OBTAIN LOGIN
  • fill out FORM
  • your USERNAME and PASSWORD will be sent to your email address
  • once received, LOGIN

    You will need to cast a vote for ALL of the 25 categories (which takes about 10 - 15 minutes). This is great opportunity to listen to some artists that you have probably never heard of. There is some great Native American music which hopefully you will enjoy.

  • NEW FIRE is in the final category at the end.
  • Remember to click on SUBMIT YOUR BALLOT on the last screen.

    The Award ceremony is scheduled to take place June 8th at the Seminole Hard Rock Live Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida. All tickets are on-sale now and available at Ticketmaster.

    I hope you'll vote for New Fire and thank you for your support.
  • Thursday, April 06, 2006

    Flute Class: Native American flute Song Writing Workshop.

    I am giving a Song Writing Workshop for Native American flute on May 20th, in Southern California. This workshop will focus on how to take your small ideas and turn them into music for the Native American flute.

    Learn the tricks and secrets of the pros!
    Learn simple, easy techniques for composing melodies and turning them into songs. You will learn how to make your ideas more focused and tighter. This class will get you started on the road to writing your own Native American flute music!

    You will also learn how to compose songs on the spot with easy Playing from the Heart improvisation techniques.

    This will be a hands on workshop with a lots of playing. Class members will compose a song in class that will then be recorded for a Listen & Learn analyzes and devlopment session. Everyone will receive a copy of their recorded song on Audio CD that they can share with family and friends.

    We will cover:
  • Writing melodies
  • Techniques for expanding your small ideas into songs
  • Playing from the Heart and the Head
  • How to combine melodies
  • Critical analysis and development.
  • Composing a song
  • Recording your songs

    Date & Time:
    Saturday, May 20th, 2006
    10am - 4pm

    Santa Margarita United Methodist Church
    30605 Avenida de Las Flores
    Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, 92688

    $90.00 per person. Deadline May 6, 2006

    How to Enroll:
    To enroll or for more information go to Native American flute Song Writing Workshop on my web site

    If you don't have a flute read my How to buy a Native American flute article that tells you everything you need to know to buy a good Native American flute. I am making flutes available at a discount to class members.

    Please note: This class will not cover the basics of how to play the Native American flute. This class is not recommended if you've never played before.

    Here are some photos from past classes:


    Scott -Ed2

    Scott- don2

  • Wednesday, April 05, 2006

    Delicate Arch and a Raven

    Many years ago, while traveling around the Four Corners I had a chance to visit Arches National Park. This had been a dream of mine ever since I had read Edward's Abbey's Desert Solitaire. His descriptions of the park at that time, the late 50's, and his time there, went deep into my psyche My journey there was almost like a pilgrimage. It was early October, the best time of year in my opinion, to visit southeast Utah. The skies were clear and the days warm, while the nights had a slight chill. Perfect weather for the 1.5 mile slickrock hike to Delicate Arch.

    Delicate Arch is one of the most famous landmarks of the Four Corners and Utah. Looking like the the legs of a bow-legged cowboy, it's massive frame balanced on the edge of a slickrock bowl, the arch is nothing like its name. Landscape Arch is more delicate compared to the muscle like shape of Delicate Arch which seems firmly rooted to the ground upon which stands.

    There is also nothing delicate about the number of visitors Arches National Park gets. If you go there don't expect to be alone. Like all the well known sites in the southwest, it is visited to distraction by people from all over the world. It seems the more famous a site becomes, the more people go there just to tick it off their list of places to visit. But if your patient and wait long enough, you might get lucky enough to be there during a lull between the groups of tourists.

    Of course you're never alone. For there are always Ravens.

    The day I was there, during a lull, when all was quiet, a raven decided to come out to play. He circled the arch and sailed across the bowl next to it, then back to the arch to weave around it like it was some gigantic May Pole.

    He gronked in pure delete and kept weaving his song lines of flight around the arch. He seemed to be playing some primal raven game with the monolith for pure joy, or perhaps like us, the arch bespoke some deeper connection for him to the landscape of his world. That his circling was a form of pilgrimage.

    Like most of my encounters with ravens, it was magical and the memory stayed with me. Recently it found expression in the song Ravens & Red-tails on my third recording, New Fire.

    I recently went back and captured some of the video I took of his flight and have posted it with a short sample of Ravens & Red-tails.


    The song Ravens & Red-tails was recorded with a Scott Loomis Wind's Song flutes in the key of G. This is a very sweet flute and was profiled in an earlier posting. READ ABOUT THE FLUTE

    Tuesday, April 04, 2006

    Echoes from the Road: Day 12: Corona Arch

    The hike to Corona Arch
    July 2, 2005. Day 12

    Every so often, when I'm out touring, I get the urge to go play. This only happens about ten times a day. I rarely act on this because my schedule is so tight and I'm not supposed to be driving around putting hundreds of miles on my truck to go play -I'm supposed to be working. Once in a while though, I give in to these urges and I take off a little early from an appearance and head for a wild spot where there is more nature and less human.

    Colorado River
    Last June, while in Moab, I did just that. I packed up my flutes and headed north out of town. Just after crossing the Colorado river I turned left onto Potash road.

    Potash road.
    Potash road runs along the north side of the Colorado and passes some very nice petroglyph panels. They're right by the road. So close that if you get out to look at them you have to keep an eye out for cars driving by.

    Dinosaur Prints
    A little farther down from the petroglyph there are some dinosaur footprints. I'd say this guy wore a size 50 shoe.

    A couple miles down the road there was a small dirt parking lot and a sign marking the trail head to Corona Arch. I had overheard some people in town saying how nice the arch was, but I wanted to see how far Potash road went, so I kept on driving. Soon, however, the paved road ended at the potash plant and became dirt. I realized that from this point on it continued into Canyonland NP and as it was about 5:00 pm I didn't have enough time for to really explore to road any further .

    Handle Arch
    Before heading back I took some photos of a thin arch visible from the side of the road, when the Corona arch popped into my mind again. Ever since I had seen the trail leading off to it I couldn't get rid of the desire to hike out and see it. So when I got back to the trailhead I pulled my truck off into the parking lot, grabbed some water and my camera, and headed out.

    The trail to Corona Arch
    Parking Lot
    The hike started up a little hill and at the top, I was surprised to find the trail crossing some railroad tracks! The tracks, it turns out, were there for trains that haul potash from plant I'd seen at the end of the road.
    Train Tracks

    Dusty Trail
    The trail continued up a small side canyon and then came out on a flat area covered with small scrub and a dusty trail. I was completely alone. The trail crested a shallow rise and in the distance some cliffs with large alcoves came into view. For a while the trail kept heading toward them but soon it begin to curve off to the left, where after rounding a bend, I caught my first glimpse of Corona arch about a half mile up a canyon.

    Corona Arch
    Even at that distance the arch looked huge, as big as any arch I'd ever seen. Picking up my pace I hoped to get up to it before the sun set behind the cliffs. The trail got rougher as it came upon some small ledges that were not passable without rock climbing gear. Luckily someone (the BLM) had run a chain-link hand rail attached to some posts sunk into the stone to aid the average hiker like me scale the rocks. Farther on there was a metal ladder for an even stepper ledge.

    Bootleg Canyon
    ootleg Canyon
    The trail then begin to cross a shallow lip between cliffs on my right and a canyon on my left. Looking back across the deep narrow canyon were the cliffs and alcoves I had seen before. I later learned this canyon was called "Bootleg Canyon". At the bottom of the Bootleg canyon ran the railroad tracks I had crossed at the start of the trail. The tracks continue up the canyon and through a one mile long tunnel until they reach Highway 191 and head toward Crescent Junction at Interstate 70. The Trains run several times a week hauling potash from the plant. Luckily for me, they weren't running that day.

    Bowtie Arch
    I passed Bowtie arch on the way to Corona arch. One of the fun extras of the hike.

    Corona Arch
    All the while I was getting closer to Corona arch, and it was getting bigger and bigger all the whole time. It was huge. Sculpted from Navajo sandstone it is also called "little rainbow arch" but it's far from little, it's opening being 140 ft by 105 ft. Rumor has it a local airplane pilot flew a small plane through it! Corona arch is a buttress arch as one end is set in the cliff face. It is one of the biggest arches I've ever seen as I climbed underneath it to get to the other side. I wanted to find out if the arch lived up to it's name.

    Corona Arch
    Once I got far enough past it to be able to get the whole arch in a photo I turned around and was stunned by the beauty. The setting sun cast a glow of radiant light around the arch like a halo and the world seemed to enter a dimension of timelessness. Except for the far off cries of the local ravens there was only the silence of the breeze and lengthening shadows to keep me company. The arch stood passive. Unmoved by anything but time measured in millenniums.

    After the sun had dropped below the cliffs I headed back to my truck in order not be be caught in the dark. On the way back I passed a couple hiking in with their dog, a chocolate lab. They were the only people I saw the whole hike. How that dog climbed the metal ladder I'll never know.

    When I got back to LA I pasted six images together to create a panorama of Bootleg Canyon with Corona arch on the left.
    Click on the image to see it full size.