A Spotlight Interview with Shervin Boloorian
A new album release from Shervin Boloorian Takes the elements and breaks them up into the form of song and chapters with absolutely gorgeous and lush soundscapes that are able to whisk you away to different places with each new track.
The I hear you mother earth album is an absolute Journey or series of Journeys I should say really that each have a way of vividly painting these beautiful pictures by way of using the right sounds textures and elements.
An incredible array of instrumentation and heart clearly went into this creation, and it was 100% a passion project which shows with every passing minute.
Airy flowy textures fill the space around you and let you swim through it all with your eyes towards the sky as you float through the layers through the songs you get a feel and an understanding for what this record is really all about.
The album begins with the Earth itself and the songs from there go upward and outward through fire, wood air, ether and more. It is absolutely Unique and special in the way that it was designed.
Now, when I say special in the way that it was designed, I don't just mean the soundscape of it and the audio itself I also mean what this is actually about and born from what it became its fruition.
This Record was clearly born of a love for environment and surrounding. A love for looking outward past where you and only you stand this record goes beyond all of that and actually not only grabs you but holds on to you as it takes you through these Journeys. And it feels great.
This outstanding cinematic tonality really lets you get washed away with the whole vibe of this release and that itself is part of the point of it all.
It's very rare these days that you hear something that not only takes you back but brightens your outlook a bit. Something that has more value than just sound and movement this does have a certain spiritual aspect to it. And ethereal undertone that makes itself evident enough to standpoint.
With the release of such a wonderfully and thoughtfully woven album, we wanted to have a talk with Shervin Boloorian to see what exactly inspired his release and what may be next fir the artist.
Here's what happened.
RAG: Let's kick things off with I Hear You Mother Earth. This record has a sort of ethereal feel to it. Where did this album come from?
I wanted to do a studio album that could capture and enhance the sound healing experience on a record. It was much more intensive production-wise to do medicine music than I expected because there had to be so much attention to detail. We wanted to explore the elements of Chinese medicine so there needed to be an entirely different feel to each track, which was not easy for Ric at first. He is a producer who is used to commercial music and these tracks had a different formula. Ric was brilliant in the end. He made each track come alive in the way I had envisioned. He also brought in some great suggestions, added recordings and personal touches of production magic that made very raw sounds sweet on the ears.
RAG: When did this all start for you as an artist?
It started years ago when guests at my live events were wanting to take the live sound medicine journey experience of mine home with them. For IHYME, we recorded most of the tracks in London while I was on tour for my Sufi album in 2017. I didn't imagine it would ever get done after hearing the first drafts of the recordings we made. I was depressed and then it came to fruition just before Covid hit. And then we had this very well timed message for the world to go back to the basic and to spend more time connecting with nature's healing forces. That year the album won Peace Song Awards and we were delighted.
There was just a very precious attention that each of the tracks needed. I dont think any of us expected we would create an award-winning album. Most sound healing albums are focused on bowls and very light sounds, but I wanted us to be more ambitious and include lots of varieties of ambient natural sounds and ethnic instruments. It is what made the recordings fresh while staying true to my live events. I usually play dozens of instruments and different styles of medicine songs--we fit all of that in one project.
RAG: What inspires you to write a song?
Anything with respect to nature or in relation to how the human spirit defies the odds. For the original songs on I Hear You, Mother Earth, I took some traditional texts and mantras and explored with melodies that I felt matched the healing messages in those mantras. Musically, I love to experiment with melodies that feel like they have an ancient or timeless quality to them, as if they have lingered in the back of the subconscious since the beginning of time. I feel a lot of commercial music has fragments of these melodies. When I feel like a melody has a soul-stirring quality, then I use that as a starting point for my songs. Certain sequences of notes then tend to click and take on a life of their own and the song unfolds from there. If I am feeling touched in a profound way while I am writing my songs, I am pretty certain that others can be touched too.
RAG: This track has some great styles! Can you give us some of your top musical influences?
Yes, a lot of different varieties and a fusion of musical cultures are contained in the album. The track entitled "Fire" blends a well known Tibetan Buddhist chant with some gospel flavors. I love listening to healing music of all kinds: from Renaissance choral music to Native indigenous chants. I am also inspired by alternative and conscious music artists who bring threads of different musical styles together--Peter Gabriel, Lisa Gerrard, Ennio Morricone, Sting, Martin Gore and other innovators.
RAG: What are you all doing when you're NOT working on music?
I am a father of twins. They are 13 now. I am part of a board game club in Ubud and also enjoy playing futsal every week with friends.
RAG: Who's in your headphones right now?
haha. I try to avoid headphones. I like to experience music felt throughout the body (not just through the ears). I am listening to a lot of traditional sacred music these days--Omer Faruk, Davood Azad, Ani Choying Drolma, and Lakota chants.
RAG: Are you guys doing any live performances right now?
I am doing regular events in Bali at the Yoga Barn in Ubud, the place where I launched a healing sound and musician's collective. 2022 marked our 10-year anniversary. I never got a chance to tour with "I Hear You, Mother Earth" because of the Pandemic, so I am excited to plan some travel in 2023 to promote the album.
RAG: This song feels like a big undertaking, is there any advice you'd give to other up and coming artists out there?
That is an understatement. The sound journey portion of the album took us a couple of years of production to complete. Ric Peet wove in a lot of recordings of natural soundscapes from his travels around the world. I played a number of different instruments. And then there was original musical composition that needed to be crafted just right for the musical setting we were going for. It all required a lot of attention, so making the album took a lot of patience as each track had to come to life in its own way.
Sound healing sessions that are live take the listener on an adventure, so the entire album experience had to feel like an organic odyssey but with the precision and quality of a studio album.
My advice to other up and coming artists is try to connect more with nature and natural sound to find ways to bring them into the music and be open to what happens. Electric and digital is great but may be more organic sounds are what we need today. Focus on the core of the feeling of your music rather than the fancy parts. The core of your song and how well it touches audiences is what will have longevity.
I have more original music I have recorded and have yet to record for an album in English on the way. It is something I haven't done yet: doing an album in English.
RAG: Before we go, what would you like to say to fans of the music?
Thank you for giving this type of music your attention and support. It has always been my aim to change the way people experience live and recorded music and your helping a movement gain momentum. We are starting to spread our wings because of you. And see you on tour or in Bali!