Sunday, September 28, 2014

Thoughts on Yoga & Music

Illustration by Boonchu
I play music. I practice (and teach some) yoga. But I don't play music when I practice. And I don't make 'yoga music' as an artist. That said, I think yoga and music are exceedingly complimentary, if not the same in many ways.
On an experiential level,  I often find that the act and results of a 'good' yoga practice and a 'successful' session are really the same. To make music with others takes both listening well and holding your own line to play your part well to create something larger than all involved.   Practicing yoga is similar, especially in a Mysore room where everyone is following their own breath, playing the parts (in this case doing the postures) while building a larger energy field than most mortals can do alone.  And if I'm lucky, I leave a performance (or rehearsal or jam) feeling the same as I often feel when leaving a Mysore room: clear, calm, inspired and connected.
Sometimes the progress of my yoga practice suffers from the time spent playing music; oftentimes the early morning practice schedule runs at odds with the 'typical' late musician night (napping is key). But diving into a week of yoga after a three-gig weekend provides a much-needed reset button. And I know my yoga practice informs my writing and playing on every level, from helping to keep my mind clear to feeding my muse.

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