« WTF with Marc Maron Podcast

Episode 1486 - Laraaji

2023-11-09 | 🔗
Before he was Laraaji, Edward Larry Gordon was a gig musician with a background in composition, an aspiring actor, a standup comic and a person interested in the metaphysical. Then one day he pawned his guitar for an autoharp and changed not only his life but the genre of ambient music. Laraaji talks with Marc about his lifelong experimentation with instruments, his collaboration with Brian Eno, and his ongoing practice of laughter meditation.

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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
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Like me, read and add head over to go, not a cast dotcom, swash sponsorships to launch your campaign. That's go dot a cast dot, com, swash sponsorships, all right. Let's do this! How are you what the fuckers, what the fuck bodies, what the fuck next what's happening? How's it going congratulations sag after a member's me being one of them back to work time to give to making them make believe yeah strikes over good job good job in our union. Strong folks union. strong mean something our right today. On the show, a guy name: laura g. Yes, the rod,
also known as edward larry, gordon That was his original name, but then he changed it to la Raji. Now, what who is this guy? Here's what happened so I got a box set in the mail, okay and it's called segue to infinity. It's it's a four lp box that, and I had no idea what it was, and I talk to her Gimme dan negroes that guy he's like one of the originators of what became sort of new age, music or meditative, music or or experimental meditative music, ambient music, but that's it ambient music art. So I don't really know who the. Gee, was in I did a little more exploring and it turns out that he is ambient three, which was
and you know produce record that I assumed was an inner record and it's called ambient three day of radiance, and it says right on the cover album by Laura g. So I've had that record. Probably for thirty years I mean a long time and I never put it together. I listened listen to the record, I kind of lump alot of those ambiance together. I assume they were Brian Eno orally collaboration brainy no. But this is a la Raji record that I I've had four for I had no idea now. This guy's got a very trusting life. He went to harvard university just as study music composition. He went to new york and he tried to become a stand of comic and yet he was a guitar player a bit and he was going. some com and playing out doing gig and then it, but he was also this guy, who was very savvy about music composition, very smart composer, but here's
Apparently, what happens is that he needed some money, so he goes to pawn his guitar at a guitar shop. and through your here in the interview through some device an intervention or some signs. He he decided tat he needed to. simply leave with as either an auto higher pay modified it, and he started basking in watching square party amplified it and he started creating improvisational sounds that were totally unique and You got noticed by Brian Eno, and then you to a brain you on that record, and now this as one of the most prolific new age musicians ever so what do you do with new age? Music? Now I don't know it's your experiences behold. I let me just do some other work here, mother business. I'm in denver, colorado at the comedy worked south for four shows november, seventeenth and eighteenth. The early shows are sold out but get over there and go get some tickets or can
wtf pod dotcom, slash, tour, los angeles, I'm dynasty typewriter on December first thirteenth, twenty, the OECD on December sixth, fifteenth and twenty second embargo on this. We're twelve in january ninth, then my twenty twenty four tour get started in sandy go at the observatory north park on Saturday january, twenty seventh, san francisco and the castro theatre on Saturday February. Third, that's going to be the last show with seats, at the castro theatre. That's all I know, then, I'm in when main at the state theatre on thursday march seventh medford Massachusetts right outside boston at the shovel. A theatre on Friday march, eighth problem, it's rhode island at the strand theatre on saturday march, ninth and tarrytown new york at the tarrytown We call on sunday march, tenth go to deputy of pod dotcom swash tour for tickets. More days will be announced soon, so Laura gi, now. I don't know what you're experiences with music. You, who guided you into the music that you knew and law.
Getting your when you were back when you were in high While there are some, you know the story, I knew this guy. Steve larue rest in peace who worked at the record store next to the legal place. I worked in high school and he had turned me on to all kinds of weird music there, accidents, primarily, I remember Fred fritz, I remember embrace you know. I remember john hassle member ino in house or kind of year. They they work together as well. But I Didn'T- I Didn'T- really know what it was or understand it, but I I had a mind for it in the sense of you know, I I kind of dug it. I kind of got the idea it made me understand. There was other types of music things going on out there, but I I just I locked it altogether and then over time, im, even with Brian Eno, as much as I love him, and I love the work he did solo but the ambient stuff when, when new age music where or what gets categorized-
just as new age, music starts a sort of fill the space a little bit and usually those are you studios or massage room spaces. start to wonder what it. What is the validity of it? What is YO can any, When do it, because I had some most when I was getting massage at some point. I'm talkin about would gyp massage, where you start to realize at that they play during. Massages is categorically new age. six or what makes it different then, a genius, does it there is a new age music and that is what fills spiritual spaces that are usually it spas. But generally it's not that hard to do with his synthesizer and some patience and a basic knowledge of the keyboard, so it kind of guy my aid for me in, and also just the idea of new age new
music, it's it seems kind of silly, some, our it's definitely connected to the full spectrum of lupi spirituality, but His ego ass time went on and I do what are we owe guy meditate in and what not? I can still appreciate it, and then I got a bunch of records from some label with a lot these early knew it the whole world of it. I guess I'm saying they don't want to be categorized as jazz, but how you take it in you, as as, it is sort of up to you and it's you have to make an effort. So when le roger came up as a possibility to interview I thought well that that would be interesting. I mean id like to know what differentiates it. I wanted to know about his past cause he's not choosing to do this out of nowhere. This guy is a deeply educated and experienced musician, both compositionally and and he did something
in wild with his instrument had an auto are pulled the the the buttons off it amplified. It ran through a phase box, and then you have this amazing transcendent sound that has very deep and intent on his part in terms of what it means and where it takes him and where it should take other people. So so I was excited to talk to him and it turns out. He just has his history with new york. That's very interesting and yeah. So that's that's how that came about. I got his box said Dan told me: that's this guy or he's a guy and then somehow or another I get to the inner record that for years that listen to but never knew anything about it and then come. I don't guess his full circle, but you know get him in the garage very good. The conversation it was interesting
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folks it's time to discover what now playing in los angeles. Let's start with food. I just had chef Michael Simon, tell me that los angeles is home to the best food in the country right now, and of course it is when you have so many cultures and diverse backgrounds, cooking up anything you can think of. How could it not be? I like, go to scalps england dale. Sometimes they go to joy in island park for chinese food, but you know that's just me los angeles is synonymous with show business, but arts and culture are more vibrant here than ever before. For museums to music to ST. Our two comedy art is everywhere, in l, a thinking about your first trip here- goes star ceremony on how we would boulevard or check out location tours of some. Your favorite movies it's your head on over to the comedy store on sunset: were you see me most nights and while you're here and allay don't forget to look up in smoke in the legendary blue sky, that's of a light that inspires directors around the world
Favorite Dana lay is waiting for. You start here at this, cover, l, a dot com? That's discover, l, a dot com. You got your kalimba, oh my god, that's all of it! You can do it all with that How is that? How is that instrument to, and it comes tuned in g, major, ok and then a four forty and when I do is return it by moving just a few of the reader to accommodate whatever alternative tuning project on working with. So it can work to a my mcnerney thing. She minor
what about in LA yeah your ears? So what'd, you add to the g tuning. the active jig, jean jus minor yeah is relative to be flat, major tat, working out logic with a b flat major tuning, and this was a compliment I just for the first time tuned by guitar to open G. First, I'm in your life, you have recently and I took the eastern off and just haven't. Open g and I just been trying to play some slight. If the eastern is off there it means a little less tension on the bottom and that's right and it's got a nice. You know. Keith richards plays everything like that. Really he takes he string off pixie string off, please open g. Now I get that in still kind of media sound all. I remember those stone songs back in kiev
did from Riker. Ok, the thought of that convention. New take a string of as opposed to put It somewhere else in the joy in the g scale like making the yeah. I don't know. I think it might be the tension thing. It definitely lets you hit that what you ve guy, will harder right right is an idea I'll give from energy to yet scary Trusting me. I united really played around fingering too much by give you a lot of residence oh, do you know cause. You don't got a bar anything. If you can figure out where to put your fingers ha ha. I pay a lot of qatar with finger on top bar yeah go on the body. I don't like on mountain dulcinea del summers have d ever dull summer. I do and as the mountains alzheimer's shaped like an hour glass yachting those yeah, you can
a doll, rod or still flight up and down the string. So it's gotta droning aspect one aspect, interesting, that you took ease instruments that were primarily seemingly a kind of appalachian hell folk instruments. in turn them inside out. Yes, I got well tempered without arm yeah. goodbye of trains, a tuning put electronics on play with various ah implements. I was not totally exposed to the ata hype to know, ah how exactly it is to be played by north plucked That's all I know so I think I'm breaking a lot of perception, rules about What's outgoing daniel, you mean you can certainly fill the space, I listen to some older staff and I like I am
relatively, I'm not new to your work by it. I had them the boy Nino pretty record for ever, but I answer yes, and three and I had not associated because that that world of It is not something that we owe knowledgeable about. but I always was an ego guy. Ah, but it turns out there. It seems it me that you opened up the almost an entire field of music outside of was originally thought I was sort of experimental jazz right, I don't know who I was using terms ology to guide me at a dire other than groovy beautiful exploration. Let's see what If you do this and if something happens or go with it, not really giving it a name, even though the word new age, experimental exploration on like those better deal age, deep, listening
near new age is seems, confrontational people what is that it sounds kind of weird wabi. Well, I think what happened in I can make this observation before was at each other a world of. I guess wage music, that if it's not done with with sort of passion, yes it it it, it can be pretty late see yes, passion and I think a devotion my place. I come from a schooling, theory and composition. So I like to act as composer. While I am improvising so being conscious of farm. Does it it's its second nature? Who yes to find the difference in from just like massage music. And at somebody who is a true artist, do you know sometimes you you get you go to a yoga
practice where you go get a massage in the play. This type of. Music on a loop that sits background, I guess rationally right and that sort of the umbrella of new age, music, and none of it sounds I should say none. I don't know the artists who I'm talking about, but a lot of times. It just sounds like it was intended to be background, music or or is something almost like ay, a progressive, the music. Yes- and you might be thinking a new age function or use of music. Yes whether they use it embarks didn't box. People have massage. These are the four year on year. also maybe the advance of he said the planetary public being exposed to technology. Spiritual technology like yoga, touchy breathing that.
I believe there is a large community that is familiar with shovels una deep that day, dive into the now that music to function as a backdrop or as a container for them for a person in that yogurt state whether recur the new age function of music and say what is uneasy about? Well, it's the whole space for someone who is ah in the zone that their bodies and a corpse pose. So is not for dancing is not music for sending your thoughts into less romantic affair here music music to keep you the port you in remaining unrestricted right, but that was not the beginning. Like you said, he studied recently because I know the others.
There, is almost like a methodology to you in terms of how you evolved into this sherman like person, nea buddy, it started in new jersey. That's yeah. Furthermore, new jersey, where I grew up had school in the school system, with very strong and offering music options to students there. That's nice right. You got lucky yeah, even in the third grade, something like a fife atoned net. We were given an Fourth grade: we were given the opportunity to study the violin, the coronet, or that with that black thing, the clarinet clarinet and the violin yeah inside of me, kindly jumped up and pointed: let's do that, I live here, the violins who I got into string music and shortly after that may be within half a year. My mother, who observe my
just a piano obtained a piano and put it in the house and upright piano. So there I was with piano violin and pulls. I was singing with the school and church choirs, though music was my default, mode or meyer stay are you the only musician in your family. yes, committed devoted this, of my on I'm their sang around the house and sang in the choir. I If I'm the only one who gave this much energy and intention johnny, and it was. I was almost gonna, be one who didn't you give the attention they give. You have rather and sister two brothers near two brothers, no music Music, but it wasn't until somebody mentioned how howard university had a good music school, that something responded to her. Maybe I don't really want to be a architect or chemical engineer. I wanna go to and pursue music that one of the options yeah. I was
bearing got mit and on to study the beer chemical engineer or either architect well worded, that what would your dad do my dad was a tailor daily. Work for clothing gain a pretty groovy clothing chow. in new jersey way, I'll Jimmie dale, none of called american shops. Her and is influenced, gave me the appreciation for clothing, styles, textures material, and looking dapper it every day. Dapper dead without at thing same engineering and architectural architecture seems like you would be kind of amazing. I really has no realize now that I was under a superficial image of what it would be like. I thought you become an architect and gotten design see, buildings and yeah, but then muddy says you don't do that. You have to
relate to what your client wants. Music seem like a free or creative lays where I could create so you are? You are headed and impulsive artistic freedom early on. Yes, it is important artistic freedom spontaneity. an early in life that is that when I was really into the zone improvisational zone I was unable to hold a conversation. Somebody come talk to me like I had a switch, the space in which my mind was focus- and I didn't realize what that was about the like maybe I was on the left side and then had couldn't function on the right side. At the same time, it totally engaged yes so when you decide to go to howard, Was there a program like that and what year are we talking anything sixty two to sixty four howard university and what was going on there? The college of fine, school of music
when I arrived there was- it- was my first real deep immersion in too late While the wall dominate people of color in seeing people of different skin textures different, I colors differ bone structure, different hair textures, seeing people of color from around the world tat was I opening embryo different dialects. It was a time when the civil rights movement was heating up stoke. We call was on companies at the time- and I remember seeing on the news, if the person that I knew on campus, seeing him on the news laying in front of a tank yeah whoa holy moly right, it's all going on. Yes,. You get involved. I didn't get involved. I didn't feel my footing with strong enough. I was on scholarship and I didn't do
not know as much as totally comical knew about what your rights, where I mean, there's somebody right. The driver drive over here. It was, it was I opening an alerting, because I did grow up connected to the indolence he peas. In my youth, I was a soft activists, in other words, being active, but not right Connected to the harsh reality, the experience will rally what was going on. I, its most people in general in when it comes to sort of activism. I think a lot of people's hearts in the right place, but when it comes to putting the rubber on too road? Yes, they can get a little. You gotta acknowledge the risks, the risks and you're inside grub, very indoctrinated and christian christian sensibility so well and pacifism
pacifism kindly Yes, although those one song in a christian tradition, call onward christian soldiers onward as to war with the cost of Jesus Ching on before, and but violence and hard core resistance. I think it was taken out of me by my father mother, the way they administer corporal punishment area so the idea being activists against authority was kind of compromise by you know here and father there are watching will also year? Would it but that's interesting as early on you realized when the it is right to want to be an architect was that you didn't want to have to answer. If can be part of someone else's vision or requirements or or ass? I had misunderstood what that
and but in the same way he know standing up to authority. He there's an essential sort of fight there and it's a righteous fight, but but through art you can transcend all of it. Yes, when you asked you stand up to enough to authority- and you think you want to know who's got your back here and how Of the authority is really responsible for what you're, protesting and anita question. Just how do you fix a situation? Have really defined the situation here and I found a diving into spirituality- does seem to be a common surfacing ah statement of what the real problem is that as the misidentification with our bodies. But when did that, when did that quest? happen. When did you acknowledge? I realized tat? I had happened after many years of spiritual investigation
that the moray around nineteen eighties. When I got started hearing this idea that debate for you go out and do anything mind your own business. So what is your real business? Gotten fix illegal There are realised that the isn't somebody else's house with her to know what your house's who you are and that. When you hear that in the beginning it sounds what do you mean where I am? Edward good, normal regime, not my rights, have been violated the added on, but that kind of thinking just leave out the core, business sector. We are one. We are a unified field, the thing that doesn't appear to the faculties when we use the fact tis to gather linear information. We rightly overstepped the immediacy of the now write em
I buy. We are a unified field that is the frequency of life. Yes, vanity exactly continuous present time folding creation is here. We are always that that's trippy did notice always here. Yet we somehow we had the feeling we should try to process the creation that was pass or creation s going to come right yet manage it. So, when you go to howard, what's the focused area or is it? What is the? the kind of contacts at the edges, As you know, they was it classical what a jazz happening at that time, oh well, when I went had to make piano my man you're an composition might minor to catch up my piano skills. They
was classical. I was immersed in classical music, classical orchestral, music, classical choir music, the big bach beethoven mia then, all the big names and it was yummy, because it gave me a deep sense of harmonies grand arm gran harmonies, how this immersive sound experience could exist. Bring this listen to non exalted state. It's interesting cause, as I am not that educated in. ethical, but I shall go. You know- and I do believe that, whether you Anything or not. Certain things either going you log in to your mind when you your heart, or their night and
and I found when I go to lincoln consent or something and see like an orchestra- I its undeniable here you're lifted, almost immediately- that's not to say that I didn't grow up under the influenza. Fan new Orleans sound, really sound and motown sound the dance alot party, the lot and mimic the music on my piano, though there is a blend everything and I remember, falling in love at hearing female cos. Air from hungary singing whoa? Is what college? Yes and negroes miracles, Roma, southern colleges coming up to new york, Our new jersey and giving concepts of spiritual, music, negro spiritual, make gospel. It We'll gospel part of my regular church, he added, but you had the southern colleges. Woodson
requires using the term. Lucy was negro spiritual. The act was what the term was then. So I had a very heart tinted heart knew you got soliciting kind of sound and because it much of it would represent the way people spoke in the south right of what are some of our lord. What a morning, my law and order sky a- My lord. What songs? At a guests, were son the plantations sung after the masturbation proclamation. is it is a good thing if you ever think about the nature of songs that were created in bonn
age as elevating? Yes, cause argue. Isn't that even the one phrase or two phrases? Are you saying the the lift of it? When you think about the backdrop of its creation, yes wires real power, and I would imagine under any kind of slavery. There are pockets where you get a whiff of freedom, whether as in the commode or its in the field where the masters aren't or use the ruling party allows you time to party by yourself. and then your jazz in your dance comes up in your laughter comes up, then you and your committee oh yeah yeah sacred communal energy gets a chance to breathe yeah. So did you stay for the four years? howard. I went for four years. I would have to go for five years to get degree for teaching music
My intention of going to music school was to get to a place of no longer feeling like a trespasser in the field of music, and I reach that and the second year, but I floated through the second and fourth the third and fourth year and enjoyed the college situation and it reinforce mice musical skills and what was the plan? The plan was to become clear enough to navigate as a composer and now and then the fourth year where, during the four years at howard, I dabbled in comedy improvisation, and it was so good that we were attracting the suggestions. You should go to new york, the bitter end and try out you're in a group.
I was an accommodating to you. Yes, and with the other guy, charles, more he's, probably somewhere in the american dream, a family were children, a car house maybe retire with a pension. By now he chose the other path. I chose the road must travel by sea leave. Howard you're an accommodating. I left. However, after four years yet and I go to new york will before I left, there was the trial period of thanksgiving break up howard, Charles and I he lived in new york. I lived in new jersey, tear. We went home The holiday with the plan to rendezvous the bitter in on a certain night, the one tell at night and I got to the bitter end, hidden
Who is it? Who is, at the bitter end at that time, go memories bill caused me was famous for having open and started them We are better n and somebody weintraub, I think, on the bitter and at the time here but I don't remember who else, but you had quite a few comedians at that time sure you I think I woody allen- was there I dunno- maybe I I feel like Martin brought them in Braverman. You know mark so I know the name, and so I got there did my act. I converted from a due to a single anyone over pretty good enough to get encourage to move to new york in, do commie yacht so the next day when I return to howard after this thanksgiving break, I I see Charles Charles edward, my man,
explain bad when he went home. Just like I went home his mother intercepted him and changed his his enthusiasm. His trajectory is you're gonna use your college education to do what in the yeah yeah yeah show I went on and he's a funny person. Well he knew how to be himself in a way that allowed other people's laugh out loud now. Did you did you have? Were you a fan of comedy? At that time? I was. I had my favorite comedians. I grew up tv comedy and reds captain red buttons, Steve alan yeah surveillance of crazy. Here his group of Lui, nigh and yeah s, jonathan winters are the best I I I am still a connoisseur of good laughter, and I am amazed at how many more committee in comedians, I'm
to know through way a pandora me, I'm sure by that time about some of the the black comics in the early sixties. There was the gregory yeah yazzi, godfrey Cambridge africa, cambridge and the flabby white flip flip wilson was in there flip wilson yeah. I think Richard pryor came a little later yeah mid sixties, probably yeah. He opened up the envelope pretty big they're impressive. If he can do that. I want to see, if I can do that, make some money. Then the plan as u s was to get enough money to set up an apartment visual either with a large red carpet anna stunt in grand piano and I would get into just riding imposing so
looked at comedy is sort of a side. Hustle too, yes get you where you needed to go yeah now, were you were you touring at all, or are you just doing this to do some touring with the thumping called the job corps camps? It was an agency who set up three artists to go out on job corps camps. It had to be interracial inter gender, so I went as MC an comedian words iraqi member, your act- did one liners, and I would say at that time I was doing comedy that was sort of death deprecate self deprecate. Here it was on zaire region stuff, it will all my original stuff. It was things like I portrayed myself as someone who was more attractive to ugly women than beautiful woman and that my adventures with ugly women, that was your angle- that, with my angle, any works that at a time it was
hiding overlap with my investigation into comedy. I may not mean edifice x and the laws of earnestness and I began thing hey if I keep doing this kind of material, sooner or later, I'm gonna attract a whole herd of ugly women into my life. So, as do I want that No, I don't want to create that situation in. I became a mindful of speech thinking as result of the metaphysical teachings, I know what you think in what you feel and what you are image really impact us. Than I was aware of really subway, like its will explain it to me. in terms of manifesting? Yes, you set up the vibration of the the way you want creation to show up in your life moment the moment it's like usin and use. I end up on the menu. That is what I want for the next twenty four hours or twenty for the data I want. I want a beef. I want to be fucking, pissed
So if I use that language, that's what I'm asking for sure if I'm turning pissed off the universe- oh he fucking piss off, is how we identify themselves, will make sure reinforced from the surrounding with welcome pissed off. I have interesting. It's the same with music, yes, And so a music through eventually, I evolved to understanding that what I want to do it music is relax the nervous system, relax the listener. Uplift spirit, were you doing in the awake, along with the comedy where you were you gigging, were you doing stuff as it was it's interesting as a musician and and an inspired one there shows commie, but you were composing it homer. You are also playing bans or what I was here. Using a literal composing onto paper, writing song and sending off to the library of congress. I was playing fender roads piano for jobs. rock group, I thought I'd winds of change and
were gazing in bringing in brooklyn and in new york and for school school. A public school systems like itunes. They were jazzy kind of I see- and it was a spoken word element to it. So it was jazz before the wrap. It was sort of jazz rock rap. So this is the mid sixties. this was the seventies sixties. I moved to new york and sixty six and establish myself with the acting agency earnestly mc clellan in new york who handled people of color. If you get roles, I got well, she got me roles in television commercials and the off broadway, oh yeah, and he did some stage work as well. I did some stage work. I remember one of my favorite commercials with for all detergent, where I would stand in this empty
container rotate less. If I was the agitator stain on my shirt and the water would lab while our scrutiny, and during that I wrecked my job precisely because it was in my pocket at the time of year. But that was the kind of things I was doing. and eventually a swell punish you of that, You played their product tester, yes, and that's very interesting mark that it took me a while to connected that in that movie, I'm playing a chemical engineer- and I didn't make the connection that here I was almost going to go to mit, to be a chemical engineer and I shifted, last moment for here's my vicarious fulfil it was a circle yeah with white robot handling in it now. What was your sense of that, because our films was sort of a game changing moment in in in independent, an art cinema had a profound impact people. I know you and primarily the films of of louis e k, yes, and
because I was actually within the day he bought it. In a bargain been at tat, mcmaster one of those places me, but I remember we were walking around. It- was in a bargain bin he'd bought it and watched it, and it changed his entire perception of what can be done on film it did it change game changer for me, because when I saw the film I'd have, I know what it was going to be until I saw the final- and I started me thinking this. What am I going to do about my role in the mass media, because Am I gonna managed more mindfully. I care is the money going to be the big thing and though I can get a piano are and what helped me to get deeper into that concern was experiencing. Ah a young poet of color who was reading a poetry at the church one sunday and which you that I'm demanded onto dawn, niggers, who did putney slope should be off. Then
that ended, ended and the derivative pan. The niggers, who did putney scope, should be off off means annihilated, and I was in the audience he didn't know. I was in the audience and I had just what kind of responsibility I want to take yeah. What are you manifesting? Yeah, yes, and I said well, where do I start and what gave me a clue was shirley Mclean at the time was doing things in spirituality her year and I thought maybe that's. Why should check out meditation to see if meditation is activity. That would allow me to sense, might deeper hearts direction and out. Well, so they so putney for wisdom invasive within the african american community or why it appeared to be, with that one person? But when I saw other people who recognize me, they praise the fell right. So there was a sign of a mixed,
people thought it was funny in well welcome forward as a new step and some thought that it did not if another maybe aims and andy that sure didn't portray black potential in the highest light icy I'd says the satire fell short in its representation. You could say that maybe it was while the basic do at that time, and maybe, if it didn't much better and wouldn't have gotten as much circulation sure, maybe if it was ill conceived in created by a black director, would indifferent. Yes, what was it like with doom, the robber downy senior year. I remember I was pretty flowing. My parts were filmed at night in wall street. They obviously had rented empty wall.
Three buildings, and so I just remember him what at the interview audition, I went to interview for one roll and he said you bit better for that role and when we finally shot the of film on two nights, very improvisation left a lot to be improved and provides a school YAP, but I do see any the parts or even felt that they were parts of it the use of marijuana or strong sexual images. The hour didn't know any of that with an film leading get a script. No, I just got. Might pages. Yes, I thought. Maybe was a greek tragedy, but yes, well beyond the weather that f and so there, the question: do you dare do that again? Do you jump on board a project when you dont know it's in
So why was it after? You got him to show him acclaim how at where'd you start with euro journey into metaphysic spirituality, I just mumble around fumble. Around till I found something that seem to address what I was looking for an eye to search and boy. Oh show it and until I got my hands on this book by a western writer richard hidden in a book on bent, impress, it was called of meditation and yo got near that book demystify it. For me up till then I thought meditation spirituality was monopolized by the east, So this was a book explaining. It gave me a point of departure what to experiment with a guy, what a sign,
yes, and it helped me to liberate from the term transcendental meditation as being a copyright term right. the generic meaning transcendental to go beyond yes and go beyond. On the thinking, mine or the thinking function of mind to see through them. That is an clouded with linear thought. Right, and so when I learned how to speak, still sit, still breathe and focus for twenty one minute another version of the universe would come up into awareness, and I was always impressed by that that day, that the way to the bigger and better is really within the moment, yeah. Now now we went now musically, where you have to what some people work I had do, in that time around that, like a sunrise, anybody I was where vaguely were of sunday. I couldn't really catch up to him until I moved to new york there, and I was aware of a job
cold? Stranger energy of listening seemed to represent an energy energy consciousness. music of energy. Yeah yeah became more aware of music and sound as energy made audible same with over. want to write the as yet he did but did the deep dish, ah alternative new age kind of crystallized when I heard a music by stephen Halpern and yes and now of living in Prague slope at the time of, and I was living and aloft and working in a coffee house declaring coffee and one morning on re there was this christening for listening, and I just listening. Wow look
where this music is going? Look where it is not going? Look what is holding space for? Look, what it's not holding space for an christening for listening, which part of spectrum sweet. So I would say that Stephen burn and yes, us showed me another opening of and validated my already unfolding exploration into. Did you Did you look into? Did any of that tests at our stuff resonate with you at the time the sitter? rubbish on cars, music, specially with music, shabby ravi, shankar friends open me up that to the in the joy, the kind of sensual, joy. I also was exposed to sun raw while living and park slope. His music did I wrote a router job on my over westernize centre yes, the area because, with this attack,
even when you play the way you play with their with malice of different kinds and rhythms, different guys that there is a sort of you know, and I know that rock as ever structure, but there are in some points in music there is sort of a rolling sense of movement. Yes, I do move around and sometimes I find myself getting too caught up in. Maybe classical sensitivity about what I'm doing and eyes. So let the good times let some jazz influence come in. So when do you lose our or the piano and you move in two, how does it the transition into white became your thing happen, living in park slope in late seventies? I was playing music for iraq, jazz rock, where fender rose piano also had elect,
or a guitar here that I play on my own and one day I needed money more money. I went to apply shopped upon the guitar ongoing one shop, I'm noticing the autoharp he end up, I get into the pawn shop. I offer the the manager, this martin six string, guitar and a fiberglass case well worth about one hundred and seventy five dollars. He offered me twenty five dollars- and I too I can handle that and just then I'm hearing or I'm sensing and I'm translating a real direct, loving suggestion. Don't take money, swap it for the instrument in the window and work. The voice was so clear. Yet there was a depth of compassion, Russian nurturing affection- and I just couldn't
ignore- and I'm wondering how is this happening, and I decided all of this rapid hole by swapping it over the odds. Not knowing where it's gonna take me and it like this. A nation of maya, new music life here, so I left there with five dollars a little deal, fires and the ata harp, and I began exploring open tuning. My favorite get open, turnings, eventually taking the cord, buys off electrifying it and using these standard philosophy or the acting technique. Yours. What? If you just you, go into a store? What if I played the instrument with that, if I electric one, if I put it through that effect, so I explored a lot of what is, and at that time
available effects were somewhere between ninety five dollars and one hundred and twenty five dollars the early eighties early eighties. Yes, so he dealing with flanders phase shifters distortions right and phasers right and loopers didn't come to much later right, where they were complicated, had tape and everything how about echo echo was difficult there, the echo plaques. I get to use it if I was at somebody studio here. They they sifter was my main thing because it could keep a cent and a sound mouth motion going, which seemed to represent timeless current right. So what it when you once you get the auto harvey is that when you hit the streets, yes, the sidewalks epoch, slow, ban, manhattan the plan there was, since I had contacted
a convincing level of meditative place on myself. Here was to explore. It was easy to operate the electric zither while in that state and cross legged position here anyway, Curious was to see how much of this enter. Nonverbal, abstract space word get transmitted through performing this rather free form sound bath, and I was impressed with people would listen and absorbed the sound and, however, draw them outcome. The linear mine, the world. My right, it must have an amazing like on the street. It kind of stops time right, thoughts, time stops, saw rush hour traffic and it was a good, earning model of how to perform with in an environment that was busy and how come upon your name from from the original.
Word lowry very gordon, edward Larry, Gordon Larry, Gordon Larry g, laura g, eventually, some friends at a bookstore tree of life in harlem in the late nineteenth seventies yeah. After a few moments of my offering music for a psychic fares at this bookstore yeah via qana brother, kenya operated the tree of life in harlem yeah until I would sit up front, end do this music that was supportive of psychic function in meditation one day these two brothers came. As we been listening to your knees, agenda takes us to a place far unlike edward gordon half will we come up with a suggestion of a name for you and I thought, oh, no,
I suggest an aim to me an idle resonate with it. This could be awkward, I said. Let me central park tomorrow, and you can reveal the name to make me what they didn't know that I was really looking for a name and that I felt intuitively it would be a name with three syllables. And it would have something to do with the sun, because by the time I had a really deepen relationship with the sun we meet in central park. The next day be a bet, there's a fountain. They reveal the name to me, and I am my while it was a name that evolve softly from Larry gourd. yeah did to laura g The raw is the egyptian sun, god he as ya and the divinity of the sun coming down into humanity and uplifting humanity destroy the loose
later of the name, laura g g is usually a spontaneously supplied name, part of a name that you plight. In effect,. for someone, so there was la G and I was wow an idea little altering so that the name would have a neurological value of seven. Why that, because I continued seven to be a level of meditation and calm, ok, and also that's, why you added in a ireland a without knowing that that a was correct in egyptian spelling of raw r, a three aids and upper case which would expose the eye equilateral triangles, which I at the time. I sense that nassau was sending spacecraft which would have a symbol of triangle.
On it- to suggest intelligent life somewhere or whatever was a theory or that effect of the fact that nassau, using the triangle as a universally interpreted symbol: okay, yeah yeah peace goodwill, so I did that are there? I was the name laura gee, I I will concern that if I change my name now will start a streak of wanting to change a later were didn we're all added some stuff, the air. Yet and my bylaws The family did not find it comfortable to get on. What with that name with a raji whitner out now and then and lovingly they politely, will vibrate the name and or call me larry in? Are you yes? Here is one of the big things to watch out for as any sense of attachment. Pierre?
The act is that it leads to confrontation, dutchman Do it mean that you still got the work to do that you still identifying with the physical dimension as your main business. I believe my main businesses, this eternal current, yet so once you start playing the attorney current or channeling surfing, the eternal current dive with your music. Are you be beginning the following forward fairly quickly yes and the Japan a following since the release of day of radiance, the Brian eno produce album. the following: develop their: maybe six, before I even went to Japan from that record, because I
You know in the new boxset eat, which is stunning and interesting. One of the discs is the first record very rich, so as to your vibration. Yes, which did not get the type of exposure that Brian's record would have gotten correct, and it's sort of interesting to listen to the first record. Nineteen. Seventy eight suggest the vibration which I listen to today and to sort of see how you you, you know you evolved year, ass? I am why impressed to when I listen to it? While I was do not then write what? Why did I stop doing that and then now I pick up the evolution of that too. I dare not being free, spontaneous and experimental really entrusting experimenting.
the flower in either the keep myself freed up. Why can gets the real, the gift of a disease I e you do get into a state where you know your sense of timing and when to do ever you're going to do in that moment of expression really fits in with their foundation that you bill yeah revelation and that just has to come with time right. It does, and I I also realise that it keeps unfolding yeah nuth up it's like meditation at the beginning the mediterranean is doll, boring the end of life at sea. I know it, but it keeps opening into the more serene layers and the big part of meditation is that the self, as I know it, undergoes the transformation, the also edison, the all self thinking is going to be boring.
The numerous south is understanding hey. This is no way boring. This is freedom right in his what it sounds like any and also the things agree today. One has the feeling is that the others reason to end Yes, that's very good point that using data that ever recorded here when someone else can they added it and concern about how is added it. I'm not hackers. been ended anywhere started anywhere? Sometimes I call a virtue. music all about every moment is, is the whole moment yeah as I was wondering if I guess, there's no sense, because it gravitational warrior moving towards a conclusion. Yes, that's classical! Is it well classical tens, I have arresting tone and call it and try I interlude and bought,
As a composer, we have artistic freedom to let the feeling flow as I'm feeling it do. You still consider it composition! When you are in a flow or an improvisation, I tend to allow elements. Simple form is aba open up with it. Whether rhythmical lawyer and then do flow? The enemy returned, a thing again, so that the listeners in odessa familiar point is at addressing razetta classical thing Everything that happened in both yeah yeah yeah. The theme in improvisation theater could be our theme in variation right right and also getting back to ambient three day of radiance, so I know there's a story behind it: the casinos and interesting guy- and he found he beat. It was a coincidence. I don't know. Do you believe in coincidence that he approached you well here, the law, modernization
man, Brian Eno and I met up here. I was doing nations, for the right producer, I didn't know who the right producer would be the use the term a right in your information so that the universal intelligence, tafia care of details- ass so there I am in my favorite performance spot in washington square park, the northeast corner, there was a cobblestone circle around, which were seats, benches and people could set an eye. sudden the centre and radiated this music. I won particular warm. Maybe early fall night, I had finished playing for a few hours, and this couple comes over to me very polite and kind and says I have ever heard of fripp and I didn't know what they were saying any more than one word
suggested a view time, you might want to check out their music and I so the meda mental note yeah. You know so that was that they took me home for dinner that right back at all, yet the couple, and yet further reiterated they live in a village a month later, I'm in the same place, while all through the next month, I'm there. But on a month later I met the same duration, finishing up counting might Engineers, this piece of paper and maya zither case it look like I d, been ripped from a very expensive book here and it was written meticulously. Dear sir, please excuse this whether impromptu message I was wondering if you would be open to discussing working on a music project sign Brian Eno and I'm saying What's goin on here yeah
and so I called him neither that neither the next morning and we agreed- I come over- brought some- I think orange juice. and we sat down. He was living on. Avenue in a penthouse articles in the art school year, and he had set up in his living space. This across from like EF, I t or I was more the arch students, I think on eighth avenue. Okay, alright, alright yeah, and what did you set up? A studio is three speakers. Yet normally you see two and he was trying to explain to me what the third speaker is about taking information from both sides and including something that's getting missed by the ears. I didn't quite grasp it, but what I did grasped it here was an advance thinker, her behalf and who is locked into what you were doing yes and he brought up the
subject of ambient, and he could see that I had not developed the belt views were ambien in my isaac. I did a sure I'm. If we went into a studio something interesting could happen and we both agreed yeah. We went into a studio In soho, within maybe a week and recorded the beginning of day of radiance ambien, three yeah and what was it like working with him as a producer? It was easy fast and Would it be left a lot of space and he showed me some very quick and new thinking about my instrument, like basically depending more on the la, high end microphones than maya pick up also dampening strings with that. Duct tape, oh yeah, and also double tracking zither, my first time of double tracking the zither on a high quality.
current situation must have in mind blown you know, there's something that rises up. Side are made to the situation in can be in a mine blowing situation, but then another by that here we are where the ones for the job. This is our time is what would rather do try to stay a try to keep a little of that engage years, realise this but you ve been prepared to do here now do it and that sort of set the tone. Yes, they are the studio, turn out to be good for the excited a static hammered work when we listen to the meditative track, which he was not aware of, that I could do the soft meditative. We listen back and realise that mechanical sounds from some other part of the studio that building and so how with leaking onto the soft recording Six months later, we recorded another meditative side which turned out to be met,
if one two and three here and there It was released through e g records yeah that was his label that was not his label, but that the label with working with him, ok- and it was funny because people would see e g and is it- is tat your label ever gordon, Those are some of the damage that can be did one with what was it john hassle and they met a come out on eg at the time. because I can remember that there is a world of music Harold bud. badia. You know that guy yes, three up did concerts together and a tour opel europe, and by that, like that record just Your kind of in terms of recording this got you going, I mean recorded like wanted to record the year. Yes and no complain about that. Put me on on the bigger map What comes along with that is that.
I'm just slowly getting to realize Bryan's credentials. I just know that he was part of roxy and yeah yeah and later found out that he basically studied in an art school tore. His approach to music is very art, sensitive sure but I would be it. Parties are gathering somewhere in the world, and people would walk up to me. Try talking and done, don't quite who they are aware. Intention is, and somewhere in the middle of the conversation reach into their pockets, pull out a cassette yeah. Can you get us too no it isn't. It happen more than three or four times enough for me to inquire. These people are trying a lot. I dont want to encroach on your private time. What should I do about this and he said well desert they can send material and now listen to it. So I got that Did you maintain a relationship with him? Yes, it's a soft spoken relationship, understandings quite busy. We
having done any major recording together revisit the beyond each other but you didn't plenty, a recording, yes, it's kind of an amazing like there any with other people, and then you integrated other instruments. When did you start using this one colombia somewhere in mid aid mid two eight eighties. I've always him love the instrument, but it wasn't as till some one place one in my hands and I could feel it. I got a negotiated end to it and went out and obtain my own yeah, of course, each person I used to get quite a few of them. From this person who Hugh Tracy, I made contact with him and here
I need to get them very inexpensively and I gave them as gifts and I would observe how each one person would have their own approach to it. One person would keep it next to his seat when he was driving a stop light or whatever plat other people had their approaches, so it with very different from the earth when in fire maurice white, he kind of fast. I thought Ask Lemme was the only way to do it dry discovered you can get very gentle yeah beautiful walking through what wooded area along or with a non talkative person. Well some immediately meditation right. Yes and the story is that this is use very much in ancestral celebrations and family celebrations in africa, yan portable and its tuneable here and is charming suit.
Now there's a bit of a story behind this new box as from tomorrow, which you got me kind of re acquainted with you in its housing, a very interesting story that you don't really recall the sessions. Yes, in gay subway to infinity now there were two different major recording situation going on a space two or three years yet one was at the z, studios, recording celestial vibration and then that relaxation company wanted to destroy it- and why do we record another album or do more of that and so a studio somewhere in long island? He added
I remember going into the studio, recording more tracks sort of as a possible second album here, and there were outtakes the first and outtakes from the second- and I don't remember- which ones were which and I do recall- the company folded relaxation folded yeah they sent me some records that they won't sell more yet, but I don't remember getting the masters right yet douglas comes at me says the student in new jersey, found your masters at an auction and its box in, do this package that has your home address on it and I'm stretching my head and saying. Well here, Why so it's a good one. So I let it go without needing to really get investigatory about it, the seamen,
it was going in the right direction for all the countries they weren't, but they weren't, where they tapes acetate, they were the original acetate supplies YAP ya that are included the voice of the engineer on them, interesting, yes and douglas. If we should release this- and I am saying really yeah and- and this was recently this was a three years ago, these some kid. Some record nerd yeah. The college student very articulate. I met him agenda, aesthetic spent, his entire bank account on hundred twenty six dollars on it and I thought wow what a devotion now. So that's how this this in its four, for five I mean before in that which
includes the original celestial vibrations, others three new, as as of then unheard of la raje releases given that every time I mean a studio, I am accessing in the divine current, so melissa back to any of my music- I can revisit the current through that music. if you get right it yeah yeah. Now, when you Now, how do you know the body is eighty years is good for you, a lotta toothpaste. And now, as an eighty year old artist, would you do these performances? and it seems that you have sort of a a position as somewhat of a a ha spiritual now and leader, but dad
I'd guide a model ai, yes, eve manifests eve, manifested a a following: a practice. You, ass. The following shows up in in the sense of somebody who means, is your music inspired me to get into this and I'm doing computer music or on exploring You oughta, harbour, open tunisia. or I am exploring getting deeper into my spiritual core and bringing that into my art form and where it is, of what is the word? I read about laughter. What is the the laughter? Is the big yum? It's it's! It's a can, the something I've always liked doing getting people into the laughter zone, even though the child, the and doing so in the comedy and new york, greenwich village yeah. Eventually getting hold of our oceans. I finish book orange book of meditations. If you're gonna, who or show, is or was,
the very stimulating, provocative spiritual model for evolving sincere seekers beyond any stuck entanglements. So that book contain many pages of suggested, meditations yeah One of them was laughter meditation and I thought up till then. While I didn't know meditation laughter belong the same phrase her and it simply was upon awakening in the morning. Keep your eyes closed stretch your arms in your legs, checking with your breathing and then laugh for fifteen minutes. That's all just laffer gis retrial up how about best you can do it. I did it for seven days. I was impressed where it goes. So you not by
because it's meditation you're, not your picturing funny things you're just having to laughter as as energy output. Yes, that's! It was difficult at first and after five minutes, I found out how to ignite, because what starts coming up is a familiarity body language here, how we natural each of us laughs what we do the hands laughter, our facial. Our breath pattern when I started noticing that it word psych snowball, laughter into authentic episodes. Anna would get into like an infectious self infectious laughter I was impressed that I could get their self ignite myself into laughter without thinking of anything funny, yeah and matter of fact, I was I used to think hey. This is full exercise for comedy writers are comedians, so it help
to sharpen our radar intuitive radar about what we're trying to get to happen and someone else interesting a bit by you. It's an involuntary action, Yes, as you see laughter natural after, usually and social situation of the editor crimes right at its core. Is there then leaves and that time you don't really have the opportunity to dive back into the deeper health benefits of laughter right like how it massages the famous in that. the seat of a means is and how it can be used to emphasise the internal organs. We know billy laugh is, but during the laughter play shops that I my partner conduct, we helped to promote conscious attitude when allow if breaks out to try to include the internal organs, ha ha ha ha ha or to let the laughter, vibrate the brain and get the territory in a banal gland
and all the endorphins and hormones going ooh, the hm hm. It's always the endocrine system, the body laughter, is call the shortest distance between two people, and I mean, I too believe it's the shortest distance between me and myself. You know, that's great over thinking, keeps us from being in sync with our self laughter is a way of transcending the thinking mine even for a while. Yet so between music in the laughter. The abbot who to it's nice- and even thank you, there. You go be brought in instrument so you can get that box set sag way to anything
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most irredeemable worst person. and the whole movie, is about showing at every step of the way he's lying. It's this thing that happened is not true. This thing that ever didn't it didn't turn out. Well, it's like every step he fucked up and it gets you all the way to the end where people are still paying their hard earned cash to listen to him because they think he's such an expert and will make them all rich. So trump there you go and then that movie was two thousand and thirteen three years before Donald trump becomes president the maleness of that movie. There definitely throughout almost everyone of each exploring exploring the male psyche away like this. This was a this was a movie about toxic masculinity before people even talking about that, but that bite, but what was known as the fun kind of toxic masculine like that
We shot as the movie goes on of that trading floor yeah the day at some point, there are guys doing acrobatic here I come back. Flipped like standing actual, isn't, has cost around driven shit show to get the latest bonus episode, plus every episode of wmd of ad free go to the link in the episode description to sign up for the full marin or go to w E f pod dot com and click on w, plus next week, we have chef jose andres on monday and fisher stevens on thursday dig it here's some sloppy slide guitar. It
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Transcript generated on 2023-11-11.