GET TRIBAL
Radio God
(Get Tribal Music)

 

The 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 Tribal’s 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." There’s 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?

Kari 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 don’t 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?

Kari 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:

What 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?

Relax…don’t 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.

The 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. It’s 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 isn’t 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. It’s 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 awareness.

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”.

mwe3: 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 to note!

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 there’s a whole other side of the drums - tribal, cultural, military - that most people don’t 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?

mwe3: 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 alive.

mwe3: What other core philosophies helps you deal with life and death? Do you think there’s 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 tomorrow’s dream. Life is always changing.

There is some aspect of us visible in our childhood that always remains the same, and we need to make it our alter. I don’t 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 don’t 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 don’t 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 walls.

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 wouldn’t 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?

Kari 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 isn’t 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 the www.CafeAuSoul.com 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 someone?

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 section’s 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!

Kari 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 Grammy’s and that was a real life milestone. I have many friends who were nominated and can’t 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.





 

 
   
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