musical group known as Get Tribal highlights the compositions
of the multitalented Kari Hohne. A most unique sound in the
21st century world of New Age music, Get Tribals 2015 CD, Radio
God, centers around ethnic rhythms, electronic beats
and exotic World Groove sounds. With its swirling mix of keyboards
and light fretboard sounds, ten track, 44 minute Radio God CD
is actually very easy on the ears and is among the most relaxing and
sonically healing New Age instrumental albums you will ever hear.
According to Ms. Hohne, Each track is designed to awaken
the energetic body, igniting consciousness with inner wisdom.
In the spirit of the earlier Get Tribal CD, called God Of Drum,
the sound of Radio God also centers upon the beat,
a percussive drum sound that is uniquely meditative and energetic
too. Speaking to mwe3 about the unique drumming sounds on both Get
Tribal albums, Kari explains, "The
drums are at the core of both albums. I have always placed ethnic
percussion at the foundation of my music. I never liked drum machines
and always liked the organic quality of ethnic drums. So even when
mixing in modern percussion, there is always a foundational track
of an ethnic drumbeat. I like to create music that relaxes people,
and has a healing purpose, even though it seems startling. There is
a kirtan, shaman style drumming as the main vibe." Theres
a certain innocence about Radio God and that in and of itself
is very refreshing. Even though Radio God is very relaxing,
the album blends in a range of World Music influences, including sounds
from Indian, Asian, Hawaiian and Middle Eastern modalities, that keeps
listeners amazed at the variety of styles. With its range of ethnic
influences and New Age expressiveness, Radio God makes for
a most sublime, unique musical experience. The CD features a booklet
with track-by-track liner notes that provides all the background you
need about this latest masterpiece by Kari Hohne and Get Tribal. www.Get-Tribal.com
mwe3.com presents an interview with
Kari Hohne Of GET TRIBAL
mwe3: Can you tell us where you are from originally and where
you live now and what do you like best about it? Also what other cities
and countries do you like and visit?
Hohne: I was born in Ohio on Lake Erie. It was a very wholesome
place and I lived near the woods and a lake similar to where I am
in Lake Tahoe now. Most of the year Lake Tahoe remains a very small
and intimate town. I live in the back to National Forest so there
is nothing but me, the coyotes, grouse, bears and bobcats walking
by while I work. I like the solitude the crisp air and the
vivid blue of the lake. I like that I can go out of my back door and
disappear into the wilderness.
I spend a lot of time in the Mayan world. I also love Africa... if
I travel it is usually to somewhere remote and has the purpose of
exploring the remnants of ancient philosophies or ancient texts with
Shamans. I love to go to remote places and uncover ancient rituals
that remain alive even though we have inundated these cultures with
our spiritual beliefs.
mwe3: Who were originally and who are some of your current
musical influences and what are some of your favorite albums, then
and now? Were you influenced by rock, jazz and classical too?
Kari Hohne: British Glam had a very big influence on my childhood.
David Bowie - Ziggy Stardust and Elton John - Captain Fantastic
were some of my favorites. In my early adult years I liked Roxy Music
Avalon, Enya and Peter Gabriel. Now I listen to just
about everything from world music to hip hop. I enjoy Kirtan and yoga
music but I also like to mix it up with Chris Brown, Rihanna and Lady
Gaga. I do like rock and Tom Petty is another favorite. I love classical
and jazz. Actually there is really no music I dislike. I dont
listen to much country music but I do like it, especially the south
Texas-style with Zydeco mixed in.
mwe3: When did you form your band Get Tribal and what are your
musical goals as creator the band? How did the 2015 Get Tribal CD,
Radio God come together and how would you compare it to the
first Get Tribal album God Of Drum in sound and scope and why
do you call the latest album Radio God? Also how do you try
and improve as a musician, artist and composer?
Hohne: Get Tribal was formed in 2012 with the vision of transcending
cultural barriers. Long ago, I observed how cultural and religious
beliefs created intolerance and how intolerance creates wars. When
I see barriers I want to find a common ground. I do
this in my books.
As inspiration, I take in the constant noise of everyday media in
a peripheral way. Then I create something spiritually healing out
of it. In my books, I highlight the common thread among all philosophies.
I breathe life into what Jung calls archetypes from the collective
unconscious. God Of Drum celebrated the Thunder
Deities in that way. Each track was founded on ancient drumming
patterns from various regions around the world with the purpose of
energizing the chakras. You can actually feel the different drum tonalities
moving up the chakra centers.
I am always bringing disparate influences together in a world fusion
sound. Both albums explore archetypes or motifs. Radio God
was originally inspired by Kirtan but also explores the caricature
of what we have created with our media. I had these questions:
is sacred and what is fiction?
What if all sound waves never went away?
What if God was a DJ and bounced it all back to us?
What would we hear?
dont take it all so seriously.
Stop fighting you have it all wrong.
Life is about love.
Enjoy your journey ~ you don't have to defend anything...
For example, in Radio God, ANKH introduces
Dervish/Islamic/Sufi elements into a retro western, Michael Jackson
style disco. GUIP blends Eastern European music with Southern
Baptist Revival. I had a lot of fun bringing disparate cultural sounds
together. Some of these ideas come from travel... like seeing the
Hagia Sophia in Istanbul where Islam and Christian symbols coexist.
title track, Radio God makes music out of industrial sounds.
KSHEN places traditional Chinese music into the spaghetti
western guitar landscape reminiscent of Kung Fu. RUAH
takes a classic Hebrew religious melody and incorporates it into an
MGM bible movie soundtrack. It's all about blending the real and unreal...
making a caricature of what we do. Its not unlike what Quentin
Tarantino does with movies but it is ambiguity I am after.
The result is something surreal and hauntingly familiar, but very
different because the old and the new are woven together.
The fabricated becomes sacred. The sacred becomes ambiguous. Ambiguity
finds a common ground. Truth is a game of adversaries.
But the music isnt always about cultural conflict or parody.
Some things belong together. KVED blends reggae-blues
with a Vedic chant because they both celebrate love and oneness. In
God Of Drum, Xango places the Buddhist chant 'nam-myoho-renge-kyo'
into an Afro-Caribbean mix. Its like the music describes itself
visually as I create it.
And it is all about the drum... I have spent much time with Shamans
around the world. I attend Kirtans, drumming circles. I study the
tonality and affect of drumming on consciousness. In God Of Drum
the percussion moves through the chakra centers. Radio God
is like yoga where the body is placed in submission through percussion
so spirit can take the lead. Even though I use drums, people say the
music is relaxing. There is something reassuring about the drumbeat.
Wakinyan from God Of Drum centers on American Indian
drums. The percussion is deep and throbbing, it shakes the bones and
mimics the heartbeat... resonates in the root chakra.
The Gaelic/Scottish percussion of Loucetious is erotic
and passionate, energizing the Sacral Chakra. By the time you get
to Chaac in God Of Drum the drumming becomes erratic
like the Spirit Chakra disentangling consciousness to achieve a higher
In Radio God the percussion blends ethnic and ancient rhythms
with a sort of hip hop modern beat. The music of Get Tribal is designed
to playfully eliminate certainty, to unleash instinct, passion...
and to give expression to "Spirit". The drumming always
has a purpose.
I guess I am a Heyoka ~ drumming the dream out of the dreamer.
mwe3: What are your favorite keyboards that you play on Radio
God and what other instruments help give the Radio God
album its unique sound? It sounds like you are playing mellotron keyboards,
which gives the music a near orchestral wall of sound in places.
Kari Hohne: I do like how the mellotron keys give some tracks
an old timey organ sound. In many tracks, the instruments
are altered by effects, like a bubbling effect on the guitar which
makes it sound like glass in the last two tracks. I use world plug
ins to get unique percussion and world sounds. My favorites are the
dholak drum in TABA and the telegraph percussion used
in the title track, Radio God.
When did you decide to mix drumming into your New Age musical approach?
You mentioned you feel like the wild child of New Age
because you mix drums into your New Age soundscapes. How important
is keeping the drumming at the core of your composite of healing music?
You say we are born hearing the rhythm of a heartbeat, which was interesting
Kari Hohne: The drums are at the core of both albums. I have
always placed ethnic percussion at the foundation of my music. I never
liked drum machines and always liked the organic quality of ethnic
drums. So even when mixing in modern percussion, there is always a
foundational track of an ethnic drumbeat. I like to create music that
relaxes people, and has a healing purpose, even though it seems startling.
There is a kirtan, shaman style drumming as the main vibe.
mwe3: What are your favorite drums to play and who are your
favorite drummers? Do different cultures offer different types of
drumming that interests you? Most people think of rock and jazz drumming
but theres a whole other side of the drums - tribal, cultural,
military - that most people dont even know about!
Kari Hohne: The dholak drum is absolutely my favorite. Peter
Gabriel and Mickey Hart are big influences. In God Of Drum,
I explored the original ethnic drumming style from every ancient culture
- Gaelic pre-Scottish in "Loucetious" and ancient Mayan
percussion in "Chaac". Native American percussion has a
deep resonance while the Maya use a lot of hollow wood percussion.
In Radio God, the track ANKH is even built upon
ancient Mesopotamian percussion but the vision was the face of Imhotep
coming out of the desert. A reviewer called that track intrepid
and it instigates Shadow work. A lot of people have asked me why in
KEOK did I mix Celtic snare with the Native American tom?
It was inspired by the idea: what would have happened had people come
together with musical instruments rather than instruments of war?
How and when did you become interested in New Age philosophy and how
can you best describe the work of Shamans and how it impacts your
music and philosophy?
Kari Hohne: Shamanism is a way of achieving altered states
of consciousness, interacting with the spirit world so that transcendental
energies can be given expression in this world. When we dream, we
enter the world of the Shaman. The organic, survival driven mind subsides
while another more omniscient awareness rises... a guiding mind...
the one who knows within. It conjures up cryptic landscapes, rich
with transformative clues as to how we can best manifest our authenticity.
This is what Shamans see. We are all Shamans in our sleep.
Drumming is used by Shamans because the body is pacified, perhaps
by the familiarity of the heartbeat in the womb. Like yoga, drumming
is a way to align the body to serve the intention of Spirit.
As a child I understood the metaphorical and poetic landscape of dreams
at the same time that I was composing music. I was deeply moved by
the engaging and imaginative power of the archetypes created by British
Glam music. Astrologers would say I was born with Mercury retrograde
so I tend to see the world backwards. I knew we learned from our dreams
every bit as much as through experience. I was writing about dreams
and had a dream
interpretation app in the top 10 at Itunes before traditional
publishers understood what I was talking about. I was lucky to grow
up into a New Age world that understood my message.
I believe we are more than this world we have created for ourselves.
Connecting others to their higher wisdom, I keep the ancient vibe
What other core philosophies helps you deal with life and death? Do
you think theres a reason why we are here and what are your
thoughts on the afterlife and is there a way to express those feelings
in your music? Is there going to be music in the afterlife?
Kari Hohne: I like how Taoism is a philosophy inspired by the
power of nature as you probably saw in the Way
of Tao section of Café au Soul. Meaning is a dandelion
seed blowing in the wind to become tomorrows dream. Life is
There is some aspect of us visible in our childhood that always remains
the same, and we need to make it our alter. I dont believe there
is anything negative happening in nature, even with floods, hurricanes
and forest fires. Nature is committed to life and has been fostering
our success since the day we were born, even when we have yet to understand
the why of the pathway. When we are lost, we are just here and that
is such a wonderful place to be. Our universe seems to have a predisposition
for the unknown and opening to wonder keeps us free.
I dont believe we are an organic being at odds with our spiritual
self. I think when we embrace our nature self, our human-ness, and
remove all boundaries that separate us from all we see, we are just
this and it is beautiful.
Life and death? What if it never ends? I mean what if the unnecessary
constraints of consciousness just fall away after we die... similar
to dreaming? How would we know the difference? Since dreams have a
purpose I believe there are many stages to our journey. A miracle
brought us here and I am sure another miracle awaits. I dont
think of separating the idea of life and death, giving anything other
than this moment of being present any consideration. Whatever
it is, I am certain it is purposeful. I live in a strange sort of
peripheral awareness where judgment is non-existent and answers become
mwe3: Who else worked with you on the Radio God album
- producers, techs, engineers, artwork... and can you tell us something
about the way in which the Radio God album was recorded, mixed
and mastered? Was there a lot of overdubbing? You put the name Lurssen
Mastering on the back of the CD and the CD does have an excellent
sound to it. How important is mastering to the final product?
Kari Hohne: Using Logic Pro to record, there is a normal amount
of overdubbing. Lurssen Mastering worked on the project. I loved what
they did with Oh Brother Where Art Thou and I was looking for
a similar old timey vibe. What I have found with mastering is that
there are many mastering options out there at all sorts of price points.
There is a real difference in the level of mastering software someone
is using. I preferred to go to the pros rather than save money with
a loss of quality. There was a warmth and dimension added to Radio
God through mastering that wouldnt have happened without
the work of Ruben Cohen at Lurssen. Stacy Koviak of Psoma Designs
does all of my album artwork. I do collaborate with a hip hop artist/engineer
who prefers to remain anonymous and unrelated to the New Age genre.
mwe3: What other activities, musical or otherwise keep you
busy? Are you into other aspects of New Age art and philosophy and
what else can you tell us about your excellent web site www.CafeAuSoul.com?
How did you put that web site together and how do you find that the
internet has changed music?
Hohne: Most of what I am doing daily involves technology. I also
build SaaS and enterprise platforms. You probably saw I have apps
in the top of the charts at Itunes and Amazon. Way
Of Dreams is a dream interpretation app that was very popular
at Itunes and Amazon asked me to build it for them. My music is also
very technical. Café au Soul is a site that allows me to share
all of my work in one place: dream interpretation, Taoism, Astrology,
Music, etc. I wanted to create a knowledge base where people can explore
our ancient wisdom in their own quiet space. It isnt that I
am offering answers... I am giving them images to explore. I love
it when people write to tell me how the tools have helped them carve
out personal self direction. What I hear from everyone is how scary
accurate the oracles are. What more could someone want but to offer
others inspiration, comfort and self direction? I am just the keeper
of the ancient flame.
mwe3: I was amazed that you offer free I Ching and Tarot readings
on the web site. How did you program the Tarot and I Ching parts on
web site? What are reversed cards on the Tarot? Is it the same as
getting it done professionally? What is Tarot and how can it help
Kari Hohne: Thank you. I am so proud of my version of the I
Ching... truly. It is without a doubt the most comprehensive version
available. My best selling book is a translation of the Tao te Ching.
I have studied Chinese philosophy since I was a child, so my I Ching
incorporates the quotes of the ancient masters! The logic that builds
an I Ching hexagram is a bit complicated to describe in an interview.
But I have captured the exact way one would throw coins or yarrow
stalks to build a hexagram from the bottom up. There are rules that
lead to a changing line and the result is a second hexagram.
Tarot has the same logic. Depending on the card upright/reversed
and placement one gains insight from a question they may have.
In Tarot, a card embodies Archetypal energy. When it reverses it can
be blocked or overdone.
You will notice that whether you are in the dream dictionary, I Ching,
Tarot or Astrology sections, they cross pollinate. Each sections
interpretations refer to elements of the other sections. Someone wrote
recently how much they learned about Hexagram 44 - Coming to Meet
- because I had compared it to the Shadow in dreams. The Archetypes
of Tarot are like the Archetypes in Dreams. Chen or Thunder of I Ching
is Uranus in Astrology or Trickster in Dreams... I built Café
au Soul on that sort of collective symbolism.
mwe3: What else do you have planned so far for 2016? Time keeps
marching onwards. What are your plans regarding new musical writing
and recording as well as live concerts and other parts of your career
and what other changes and challenges are on the horizon in 2016?
Good luck to you in 2016!
Hohne: I am trying to break out of the New Age category. God
Of Drum was definitely New Age. Radio God crosses genre
boundaries as World Fusion or even Techno Fusion. It has many hip-hop
elements. I really like the drama that came out of Radio God
and plan to lean a bit more toward mainstream with some of the cinematic
elements. I guess I am going back to my British Glam roots. I just
got my invitation to the Grammys and that was a real life milestone.
I have many friends who were nominated and cant wait to celebrate
with them. I am not sure what is on the horizon... I know it will
involve a drum, a dream and more adventures around the world. So much
to explore and so little time to do it. Thank you so much for sharing
the vision. It is such a pleasure to meet you.