Portrait of a Filipino Jazz Musician

I first heard Ryan play the keyboard at Tago Jazz Café in Metro Manila, where he performed with his trio and with other groups, then later at the Ayala Museum. His work made me an instant fan, I think in part because of our love of Keith Jarrett, who speaks of improvising one note at a time. Ryan and I share a common view of inspiration, or, as my favorite music critic, Alan Rich, wrote decades ago in New York magazine, “I am neither a church-goer nor an atheist, and the reason I am not the latter can be found Read More

A Monk from the Matayog Health and Wellness Center

A few months ago I posted an interview with Richie Quirino, author of The Amen Vibration, the story of his spiritual journey (Link Recently he introduced me to Dada, a childhood friend who had lived in India, Africa and South America and was now back in the Philippines as the head monk at the Matayog Health and Wellness Center in Parañaque. (Link). Dada and I talked at the coffee shop in the Hotel Kimberly across the street from my subdivision in Tagaytay. Thanks to Dada for the photos I pulled from the center’s Facebook page.Read More

A Remarkable Journey with Light and Sound

I first interviewed Richie Quirino about his books and video on Filipino jazz in “A Jazz Musician and Jazz Journalist.” (Link). Recently we spoke in the Hotel Kimberly  coffee shop in Tagaytay about his latest book. The Amen Vibration, Volume II, was published under his spiritual name, Echad. The Kindle version is now available free online. (Link) The book follows an unpublished manuscript of decades earlier. It presents a chorus of voices on the positive and negative effects of light and sound on humanity—science and religion with variations.

Richie’s story

In the first chapter of … Read More

A Vision List

When I met Geri in Seoul in 2006, she struck me as being always cheerful and positive, but also definitely intelligent. After I left Korea in 2007 we kept in touch via Facebook and sometimes saw each other when I made my annual trip to Seoul. This interview took place over Skype, when Geri was in Seoul and I was in Manila. Thanks to Geri for the wonderful photographs.  

Geri’s story

I was raised in Idaho around Mormons and Methodist farmers—good, hardworking, solid German stock. Before me no one in the family had gone to college or traveled, except for … Read More

The First Heal-Om Festival

On Thursdays I meditate with David Montecillo and Claudine Mangasing at Sattva Space on Xavierville Avenue, Quezon City, a ten to fifteen minute walk from my house. David was trained in Tibetan Buddhist meditation. David and Claudine, both members of a healing group called Lily and Beyond, were organizers of the Heal-Om Festival United for a Higher Cause, which was held at Whitespace in Makati, Metro Manila, on October 14. I agreed to go and take pictures.

The banner at the top of the program reads: “Step into the future. Planet healed. People awakened. Life transformed.” When I arrived at … Read More