Tag Archives: yoga

The power of bass

By Jeremy Rick

Quality lighting 300ppi(1)Through their synthesis of music, movement, and art, the co-founders of Sacred Bass Sessions have created an up-and-coming series of social gatherings in Bellingham.

“The key to the success of Sacred Bass Sessions is pulling together a lot of different communities,” co-founder Christian Martin said.

Their most recent event was a Feb. 14 gathering to celebrate Valentine’s Day, titled “Heartbeat.” The event consisted of a group yoga session, live painting exhibitions, acoustic and electronic music performances, and a belly dance performance. It was hosted by Presence Studio, a space located in downtown Bellingham above Bellingham Bar and Grill.

Sacred Bass Sessions “sprung from the brains and dreams of two people,” Martin said. “I dreamed up the concept and went to Erik, who had the ‘know-how.’”

Martin said that he and his fellow co-founder Erik Moore first met at the 2007 Burning Man music festival in Black Rock Desert, Nevada.

Martin volunteered to help Moore construct a 40-foot-tall pyramid out of recycled billboard vinyl as an art installation for the festival.

The duo began collaborating on their productions in November of last year with a Thanksgiving-themed event celebrating abundance, Martin said. Heartbeat was their third event, and their fourth, called “Balance,” is planned for March 21 during the spring equinox.

“I had a vision of music and yoga and live painting,” Martin said. “Erik has helped make the dreams in my head become a reality.”

To begin Heartbeat, Melissa Longfellow, director of 3 Oms Yoga in Bellingham, led a group yoga session accompanied by an electronic music performance by DJ Hyfi, a nomadic musician who has played for yoga festivals around the U.S., Martin said.

Following the yoga session, singer-guitarists Benjie Howard and Gentri Watson gave an acoustic performance.

An electronic DJ known as Drumspyder took the stage with his laptop and drum set after Howard and Watson finished. The incandescent lighting was dimmed, colored lights were projected around the room, and the sound system’s volume was turned up.

“We try to find DJs who mix live instruments with their electronic music,” Martin said, rather than mainstream house music or techno artists who rely solely on electronic devices.

Drumspyder’s “combination of electronic and acoustic instruments creates a type of sound that seems to carry the group through space and time in a unique way,” said Johann Rainey, who attended the event. “[His] sound is very ‘psychedelic tribal dance.’ It has a raw bass beat that allows you to break into a primal state of being and emotion.”

While the audience did yoga and danced to musical performances, Bill Ball, a local artist, was busy creating a new painting on a canvas near the stage. Ball exhibited his “sustainable paintings,” which were done on pieces of cardboard boxes, he said. He also showed interested audience members some of his personal techniques.

“The art, music, and dancing of the event were all very unique to Bellingham’s social scene, and I’m excited to see what they do next,” Rainey said.

Sacred Bass Sessions’ March 21 event, Balance, will feature Plantrae, a DJ “who plays violin on top of his electronic music. It is a very beautiful and moving blend of beats and classical music,” Martin said.

Balance will also feature Swil Kanim, a Lummi Native who specializes in storytelling.

“Sacred Bass is a cross-pollination of sub communities,” Martin said. “It’s neat because it’s exposing a lot of different groups to each other.”

Amanda Walsh, a former Whatcom Community College student who attended Heartbeat, said, “It’s a community atmosphere. If you don’t know anybody at a bar, you could be standing alone. Here you could walk up to anyone and strike up a conversation or dance with them.”

“The environment is way more welcoming than the bars,” said Kaylee Wiebe, who also attended the Heartbeat session. “It really deters anyone from judgment. We’re just here to have a good time.”

“These events feel ‘sacred’ because they create a sense of unity among the participants,” Rainey said. “It’s a very spiritual experience.”

The events are open to anyone ages 18 and over. For more information on Sacred Bass Sessions, visit www.sacredbass.org.

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Spicing up spring

by Mary Lyle

Horizon Reporter

Every student in their college career will more than likely take a few classes that they have to force themselves to attend every day; where they lack interest in the subject matter, and struggle to grasp and understand the material. As a Whatcom student, you might want to take a more unusual, out of the box class for spring quarter along with your “not so fun” classes.  Or just a class with something about it that at least strikes your interest.

For a creative side, Whatcom has a variety of art classes.  You can take ceramics from levels I, II, or III  and design and create pottery for a credit.  Natasha Snowden, 18, plans on taking ceramics next quarter. 

“It seems like you don’t really need to have talent in it to take the class,” said Snowden.  “I don’t feel confident with drawing or painting, and ceramics is hands-on.” 

Taylor Hower, 22, took Drawing I as his only class for summer quarter.  He said he liked taking it over summer because “it’s not a stressful class at all.” Hower said he recommends other students taking art classes even for students who don’t feel confident in drawing or painting. “You can find out you’re actually capable of doing things you hadn’t thought before,” he said.

From intermediate painting, Drawing I, and figure drawing, Whatcom has a lot of art classes available for spring and summer quarter. 

For students who love the outdoors, Historical Geology 212 takes a class field trip to the Sucia and Cypress Islands for two days over the quarter.  They ride over in a charter boat and camp on the island for two nights.  Bernie Dougan, the instructor, said the class does field geology, collects data, makes observations, and interprets the geological history of the islands. “We cook our own food and sleep in tents,” says Dougan.  “Nothing is available to us, it’s real camping.” 

Dougan also offers an introduction to hiking P.E. class.  He takes the class hiking through Chuckanut Mountain and Blanchard Mountain three times throughout spring quarter.

Yoga and introduction to tai chi  classes are also available at Whatcom.  Yoga, a system of exercises practiced as part of the Hindu discipline, and tai chi, a Chinese system of physical exercise, promote relaxation, balance, and health, three valuable, and beneficial factors for a stressed out student. 

Danny Ray, 20, a yoga student at Whatcom, says that yoga “gets you in tune with your real self.  What’s on the inside.”  He said that yoga opens you up and “unties the knots of stress.”

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