Frequencies are snapshots, sets of encounters, views of wonderful landscapes, discoveries of the lives of people in big cities; in the countryside; in the desert … from France to Asia crossing the Middle East and India.
The tunes of the album are all small stories like a travelogue or a “carnet de voyages,” a set of sensations and frequencies I felt when traveling the world.
Being on a beach paradise in the Indian Ocean…. the blue of the sea and the sky, the white of the sand and the green of the vegetation which completes that picture. All of which gives such a set of wonderful contrasts!
Such beauty and serenity had a mesmerizing effect on me and that blue color was something like a sensual calling.
In this tune you are hearing the beautiful voice of Mayada Bselis, a great singer from Syria. I recorded her on a visit to Aleppo.
Jam at 2
One night working in my studio I was editing the voice of Hany Adel and the sound of his voice had such a presence that I really got the impression we were digitally on the same stage! I took my guitar and improvised some licks adding in the arrangement a solo of Abu Shamon, a brilliant Syrian percussionist.
I really feel this tune is a digital jam session with the small solos and the creative vocal improvisation of Hany who is a famous singer in Egypt. I recorded his voice in the Yacubian Building in Cairo an incredible place with so much old fashioned charm and resonance.
This is the story of an encounter with an Indian guy, KK in a garden at Pondichery, India. We were first connected on Facebook and when I told KK I planned to visit South India we decided to meet in Pondichery.
After dinner we immediately started recording together.
As we had no place where to record I set up my equipment in the middle of a garden in the middle of the night! With the warm night air, among the tropical vegetation with the breeze of the sea, it is probably the most astonishing recording session I have ever made. It is an amazing memory. Of course, the setting for the recording was not ideal, but there was such emotion involved it made it work.
KK is a Carnatic singer. Carnatic music is the traditional music from South India.
KK improvised some melodies and poems in Malayalam language.
‘We dissolve in the music of the sea and wind
And its sound gives peace to our mind and soul’
‘My mind is dancing with the wind from the mountains’
Of course the title is something of a wink to my tune Baul Dimension. There is also real link since Baul and Zar are in fact both musical traditions for ritual dances. Baul is coming from Bangladesh and Zar from Egypt.
The Zar is a very ancient ritual dance of possession originally coming from Sudan and Ethiopia. Laterally the tradition has become a bit taboo and its unique style is slowly disappearing. I find that this music has a really outstanding power and energy.
I was really lucky to record this music and in particular the lead female singer of the ensemble Mazaher who was really an impressive woman.
“Parcourir le monde des idées sans jamais s’arrêter
Partir en avant, vivre les bons moments
Laisser flotter les rubans”
“Travelling to the world of ideas but never stopping
Moving ahead, enjoying the good times
Let the ribbons float”
Laisser flotter les rubans is a French poetic image which means:
“let us make your problems drift like the ribbons float in the wind”.
Inspired by a reading of the book of the great French writer Joseph Kessel:” La vallée des rubis”.
Mogok is a city of the Mandalay region of Burma known for precious stones and in particular for rubies. They are the finest in the world and have been dug since prehistoric times. Pigeon’s blood is the name given to the best gems of all.
Mogok is the Valley of Rubies.
I think all of us have an interior” Mogok.” A place somewhere in our soul where we have hidden treasures. The way to bring them out is simply the desire itself we use to find and discover them. This is always a long and challenging inner journey.
Sofa on the river
The Chao Phraya river is the living artery of Bangkok.
The traffic is constant day and night: transport boats, goods barge trains, tourist boats, long tails. Chao Phraya carries all aspects of people’s lives. I know a place in the city where you can watch all this movement and dance. Laying in a sofa there you see the life come and go.
At the end of the tune you can listen to the bells of Wat Arun Temple. It is never easy to climb up and record with all of those tall, steep sloped stairs!
“Ki koriya joré chobol mari
These Bangladeshi words mean:
“How to bite him as hard as a snake
But I’m laughing”
It’s a sample of a love song from the Baul tradition.
Megacities are fascinating. They such are a concentration of all temptations. Now they are becoming sacred temples of consumerism. But temptations have always a price.
As time and life goes on I realise more and more each day the beauty of our world.
We absolutely need to preserve it by thinking much harder about the way we are consume.
“Le monde est plein de tentations
le monde est plein de sensations”
“World is full of temptations
the world is full of sensations”
Story of a dinner in the middle of the desert near Siwa oasis.
This conjures up something like a scene like a film or a dreamy advertisement!
Autour de moi
les couleurs disparaissent
les étoiles apparaissent
Dans le silence du désert
Les étoiles apparaissent
All around me
The lights disappear
The stars appear
In the silence of the desert
The stars appear
This is the sensation I feel when sat in the plane and thinking about my destination.
Such an exciting feeling, because a new adventure is about to begin!
“Flying in the sky
Moving in the air
Discovering new places
Making friends from everywhere
Flying in the sky
With the birds and the clouds
Moving in the air
This is an optimistic song in a 1960’s mood with happy guitar and bass parts! Flying is a hymn to the journey and this is dedicated to all the people who travel and love it.
The Kerala backwaters, located in South India are a chain of lagoons and lakes in South India lying parallel to the Malabar Coast. The entire lives of the people who live there are organized around the water: for transport; washing, for cooking.
You sail there and you discover much more their lives. Each of those people plays their own character like in a movie. I tried to give the music these images.
Similarly in the tune itself the solos played by musicians are different scenes or indeed parts of the same story.
(P) (C) 2011 Daniel Masson