Some Notes About "Murals"


     It was three years ago that the CD All Creation was released. It sapped my energy to the point that I felt I had nothing more to say or passion to create. Earlier this year (2008), I began to feel that urge, that fire, once again. I began booking studio time with Duane and proceeded with the faith that "if I book it, they will come." The songs, that is. They did and I am grateful once again for the divine hand that I believe guides me through these blessed challenges. - James

A few words about the songs...

Three Petals Inspired by a beautiful Peruvian despacho ceremony led by Francis Hayhurst and don Allan Hardman at the Walker Creek Ranch in California that I attended in 2007 (Summer Celebration of Love).

Hovenweep A decade ago Dawn and I walked through the ruins of Hovenweep in the Four Corners area of the Southwest. We felt a mystical energy there in the haunting silence. A decade later, I was asleep and dreamt I had pen in hand and was writing a new song on a legal pad. Aware that I was dreaming, I thought, 'I wonder what I'm writing?' At the top of the page I saw that I'd written the word "Hovenweep". It seemed I was being directed to finish this song so, when I awoke, I did. It is a tribute to the ancient Anazasi people.

Love Is not a Verb As Dawn was teaching the Intent Mastery group in Tennessee one Sunday morning, she spoke these words. I'd never heard her say them before and it sounded like a song title. Sitting there, I quickly thought of a chorus. Later, at home, we finished it. We often blame love for causing us problems but, the truth is, love is blameless...love is love. What hurts are the other things, like our skewed beliefs and unrealistic expectations of what love is and isn't and is and isn't supposed to do.

Mariposa Mariposa, the butterfly, is a symbol for transformation. It was October of 2005 and we sat in a circle at the top of the Pyramid of the Moon. There were about twenty-three of us in the group, led by Barbara Emrys. The butterflies rose up from the earth below, fluttering swirls of blue and yellow, attracted, I believe, by the transformations we humans were undergoing, showing us the way.

Mystic Maiden When I met Dawn, I wrote "Waiting for Dawn" teo days later. A few months later, I reveled again with "It's Only Natural" and "We Were There" (all on the Mirror Boxes and Diamond Rings CD). A decade has passed and I thought it time to celebrate her again, this time with "Mystic Maiden."

Jaguar Mural This song tells of my experience at the temple of Tetetla, while sitting before an ancient mural.

Piney River (I Am One) My father was dying and I'd just returned from visiting him in Massachusetts. I was back at work at The Ranch and stepped out of my office to take a break. As I contemplated this cycle of life and death, I spied a bald eagle flying up the Piney River and diving at a grounded flock of Canada geese. Even death is beautiful, I thought. The moment took away my breath and the seed of creation was planted.

Stories Is it possible to allow every day to be blissful? Perhaps. This is an ode to the storyteller of my mind and the oh-so-terrible lies he tells me. ;)

That's Life Are you a victim? Do you not have choices? In creating our lives, I believe we often create chaos, sorrow, hell, fear, anger...suffering. This song takes a tongue-in-cheek look at a lost relationship.

Song of the Crone This was written for a croning ceremony our Tennessee Transcendence group created back in 2004 to honor the elder women in our fold. As woman moves from the role of mother to elder, it is also considered a shift from knowledge to wisdom. This passage is being celebrated more and more these days by family and friends. Crones of old became a persecuted lot. But before that, they were revered in clans and tribes as women who possessed gifts of healing and midwifery and remembered the songs and stories of the past. Use this song for your croning ceremonies.

The Pools of Tepantitla Sitting in a dream at the Temple of Tepantitla, I was visited by an old shaman. The short poem here reflects his words to me, as he stirred the pool of water with a staff, merging my reflection with those of the stars.



Liner Notes

Dreaming into painted portals
of ancient days,
palindromic paths converge
and millenniums melt.
Creatorís hand reaches out,
sowing sparks in tinderbox hearts.
To the breathless loverís thirsty eye,
this masterpiece is never dry.
Divinity dances
between the brushstrokes.

- In gratitude,
to the Toltec artists of Teotihuacan,
- James

Lovingly dedicated to Roger Nihan, my chosen father
August 15, 1920 - May 23, 2006

James is playing Butch Hall flutes. Visit www.butchhallflutes.com



Creators and Creations

1. "Three Petals"
(Words and Music by James Nihan)
James Nihan: Vocal & acoustic guitars
Ron de la Vega: Cello
Duane Sciacqua: String arrangement
Dawn Zurlinden: BU vocals

2. "Hovenweep"
(Words and Music by James Nihan)
James Nihan: Vocal, acoustic guitars, N.A. flute, harmonica & hand drum
Duane Sciacqua: Electric guitars & rain stick
Brian Hinchliffe: Bass
Kevin: Djembe & shaker

3. "Love Is not a Verb"
(Words and Music by James Nihan and Dawn Zurlinden)
James Nihan: Vocal & acoustic guitar
Dawn Zurlinden: Vocal
Duane Sciacqua: acoustic lead guitar

4. "Mariposa"
(Words and Music by James Nihan and Dawn Zurlinden)
James Nihan: Vocals & acoustic guitar
Duane Sciacqua: Electric guitars
Brian Hinchliffe: Bass
Steve Holland: Drums & tambourine

5. "Mystic Maiden"
(Words and Music by James Nihan)
James Nihan: Vocals, acoustic guitars, N.A. flutes & wind chimes
Ron de la Vega: Cello

6. "Jaguar Mural"
(Words and Music by James Nihan)
James Nihan: Vocals, acoustic guitar, jaw harp, hand drum & ocarina
Kevin Ball: Djembe
Duane Sciacqua: BU vocals

7. "Piney River (I Am One)"
(Words and Music by James Nihan and Dawn Zurlinden)
James Nihan: Vocals, acoustic guitar & N.A. flute
Becky Hobbs: Accordian
Kevin Ball: Djembe

8. "Stories"
(Words and Music by James Nihan)
James Nihan: Vocals & acoustic guitar
Duane Sciacqua: Electric guitar
Brian Hinchliffe: Bass
Steve Holland: Drums
Dawn Zurlinden: Tambourine

9. "That's Life"
(Words and Music by James Nihan)
James Nihan: Vocals & acoustic guitar
Duane Sciacqua: Electric guitars & BU vocals
Brian Hinchliffe: Bass
Steve Holland: Drums & shaker
Dawn Zurlinden: BU vocals

10. "Song of the Crone"
(Words and Music by James Nihan)
James Nihan: Vocals & acoustic guitars
Duane Sciacqua: Acoustic lead guitar
Ron de la Vega: cello
Kevin Ball: Djembe
Dawn: BU vocals & tambourine

11. "The Pools Of Tepantitla"
(Words and Music by James Nihan)
James Nihan: Vocal & acoustic guitars
Duane Sciacqua: Ambient sounds












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