One of the really unique things about WYC is our commitment to inspiring everyone to create yoga music and art. WYC has three yoga music bands and every WYC teacher training program session includes music. We teach students how to chant the yoga mantras musically and we encourage students to learn how to play Indian folk instruments like the harmonium.
Of course we understand that the prospect of making music and art can be scary. So we ease students into these creative expressions. Still, you can’t imagine how many times we’ve heard students try to talk their way out of having to do the teacher training art project. “But I’m not an artist.” “What does yoga have to do with art?” “I’m not creative.” You also can’t imagine how many times teacher trainers will come up to us after the program and say, “I loved this program, and you won’t believe it after all the things I said, but the art project was my favorite part.”
We do believe it. We can’t video the teacher training yantra sharing days because of how personal the experience is for everyone, but if we had documented all the incredibly powerful heart-openings that have happened, it would be the greatest art documentary film imaginable. It gives us chills just thinking about them. And it has almost nothing to do with the actual art pieces. The art facilitates our exploration of energy in a way that people can’t over think. The feel for energetic expression just comes out like magic and that’s how the whole thing relates most obviously to yoga.
But there’s also no need to get to serious here. Really, Scott just likes to use the whole WYC institutional structure as a way to justify making crazy logos like the WYC one you see all over this website, and also t-shirt designs. He’s always coming up with new t-shirts. are some of his whackiest. As those of you familiar with art history can tell, he’s a big Basquiat lover.
Oh, and if you’re interested in watching a video of the very first Yoga Das kirtan, HERE IT IS.
Believe it or not, world class tablas player Miles Shrewsbery is providing all the percussion on that song. Lisa Kekaula is doing the lead singing, Bob Vennum is playing the guitar. They started a world renown rock group named the Bellrays twenty years ago and it’s still the greatest group in the world. CHECK OUT THE BELLRAYS singing one of our favorite all-time songs of theirs. So right there is an example of how crazy incredible things can get when you just start playing yoga music. Scott was never in a band his whole life. As you can tell from the Yoga Das video he still can’t play bass and he’s not much better on the percussion instruments he plays now. But who cares? Who gives a shit? Scott still ended up playing in yoga music band filled with incredible, world famous, Grammy nominated musicians like Miles, Lisa and Bob. Incredible. There’s no rational explanation. Yoga is good. Yoga is great. You just start loving it and miraculous things start happening. You end up making music art that you never thought you could make. With yoga–especially with yoga at WYC–it just happens.
And if you are already in Teacher Training and you would like to check out this great website on Yantra Painting, go ahead.