Autumn Awakening

Greetings, One & All~

As we desert dwellers awaken from the lucid dream of another Sonoran summer into the refreshing energy of the autumnal equinox, your September A 440 Newsletter brings news of an upcoming tour, an album release, a classic interview, a river of rhythm, and of course photography and poetry. Enjoy!

Island Breezes

The long-held dream of introducing the global native fusion vibe of the R. Carlos Nakai Quartet to Hawaii will become waking reality with our four-island October tour. Aloha!

Breathe Easy

The new Heart Dance Records album The Space Between Breaths by the elemental trance groove duo Sherry Finzer & Will Clipman drops on September 20th. Perfect for yoga, meditation, massage, dance, chant, or simply the pleasure of deep listening, this sensuously soothing soundscape will transport you to the peaceful center of your being.

Pre-save or pre-order The Space Between Breaths at:

Artistic Journey

I hadn’t actually heard my interview with Candice Michelle of Journeyscapes Radio before including it in my August newsletter, trusting that it would be exceptionally well-done. Now that I’ve listened to it, I wholeheartedly recommend it as a comprehensive yet succinct encapsulation of my artistic journey. Our conversation is highlighted by a soundtrack comprised of samplings from a broad spectrum of my recorded oeuvre.

River Rhythms

On Friday September 27th from 4:30-6 PM I’ll contribute my pan-global pulse to Drums Along the San Pedro, a consciousness-raising event in defense of the San Pedro River, Southeastern Arizona’s premier riparian ecosystem, which is presently threatened on multiple fronts. For information on and directions to this free event, please RSVP to:

Laiken Jordahl:


Kate Scott:

Photos of the Month

The nature photography of Shery Christopher continues to astound, as this recent trio of images attest. Her work is steadily eclipsing my Poem of the Month as the most popular feature of the A 440 Newsletter, and rightfully so. I’ll keep trying, though!

Monsoon Gold, courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

The Stare, courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

Barrel O’ Bloom, courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

Poem of the Month

It’s All Good

It’s good to have lived a long time

in a house that’s older than me

and which like my life

has been improvised

since when the city

viewed from here

was a handful of stars

on the far horizon,

to have lived with wild things

who come and go

as if I weren’t here

among centenarian saguaros

with arms upraised

in supplication and in celebration

speaking the silent wisdom

of the ancient ones.

It’s good my skin is on fire

and can’t be touched

by what we thought

we had evolved beyond

but which still lurks

deep in the murk

where shadows dance

on antediluvian rock,

and maybe most of all

it’s good to gaze

with sleepless 3 AM lucidity

into the crystalline depths

of this sacred pool

as the full sturgeon moon

swims up from prehistoric mystery

into the brilliant and only now.

© Will Clipman 2019

~May your autumn unfold with the miracle of renewed possibility~

The moments we spend appreciating beauty are never wasted.

~Guillaume Henri

Will Clipman

poet ~ percussionist ~ maskmaker ~ storyteller ~ performing artist ~ educator


Cool Refreshments for Hot August Nights

Greetings, One & All~

With the 50th Anniversary of the moon landing having coincided with my 65th birthday, July flew by with extraterrestrial velocity and yet was filled with the stillness of inner space right here on Earth. As the mystery and magic of the monsoon season envelops us in Sonora, I trust you’ll find some cool refreshment in this hot August issue of your A 440 Newsletter. Enjoy!

Nakai & Clipman

Your intrepid sonic explorers of the outer reaches of inner space R. Carlos Nakai & Will Clipman will bring the latest iteration of their global native fusion sound to One World Theatre in Austin TX on Sunday August 25th, and to Mt. Peale Inn & Animal Sanctuary in La Sal UT on Saturday August 31st.


As part of the recent Heart Dance Records summit, Journeyscapes radio show host Candice Michelle recorded this wide-ranging, entertaining and informative interview with yours truly, which has just been published at:

Breathing Space

Speaking of Heart Dance Records, we’ve wrapped up the final design phase for the new Sherry Finzer & Will Clipman album The Space Between Breaths, which is cued up for a September 20th release. Whether you’re into yoga, trance dance, massage, meditation or just deeply groovy new world music for it’s own sake, this intimate dialogue between the flute and the drum will transport you to the stillpoint at the center of your being.

Family Affair

Over at Shaken Earth, we’ve got the fist six mixes in the can for the forthcoming cello and drum extravaganza Wildly Ethereal by Michael G. Ronstadt & Will Clipman, recorded by Peter Dalton Ronstadt and featuring cover art by Annabelle Ronstadt, who painted this abstract watercolor in the studio to the sound of our music.

Wildly Ethereal, painting by Annabelle Ronstadt, age 2

Solstice Scintillations

In addition to hosting my Treehouse Jam living room concert and workshop in Draper UT and conducting the Drum Circle at the Solstice Flute School & Festival in Midway UT earlier this summer, instrument inventor, photographer and videographer Michael Trigleth created this stellar video from his still photographs of our Concert Under the Stars all-star jam at the culmination of the festival:

Photos of the Month

As you can see in these magical moments captured by photographer Shery Christopher, we have the entire Sonoran Desert food chain right outside our kitchen window, and our brave bunnies need to be alert and quick to avoid being on the menu!

Harriet Hawk cools her talons. . .

. . . while four extraordinarily nonchalant rabbits chill in the shade. . .

. . . and the newest addition to our resident bobcat family laps up a drink. . .

. . . sharpens some impressive claws. . .

. . . and strolls off for the evening’s adventures!

Poem of the Month

Snake River

I feel the current

of its current

course through me

as it rushes by

from its headwaters

among those not-too-distant

snow-capped peaks

sculpting granite boulders

who have sat

where I now sit

for a million years

and I listen

to its one-word language

with my desert dweller’s ears


it sings

in a ceaseless susurrus

sinuously stretching out

that singular vowel

© Will Clipman 2019

~keep cool and keep in touch~

Be a conduit for grace.

~Guillaume Henri

Will Clipman

poet ~ percussionist ~ maskmaker ~ storyteller ~ performing artist ~ educator


July Jewel

Greetings, One & All~

Having been on the road for most of the last three months (12,000 miles through 20 states) I’m happy to say that July will be light on work and heavy on play, and that your July A 440 Newsletter is being delivered with gem-like concision and clarity. I wish you all hot fun in the summertime!

Heart Dances

Sherry Finzer, Darin Mahoney & Will Clipman will reunite for a rare Trialogue concert on July 2nd at Friendship Village in Tempe AZ.

Also, watch this space for updates on the release of the new Heart Dance Records CD The Space Between Breaths by Sherry Finzer & Will Clipman.

Solstice Snapshots

Suss and Fulfill for Total Flutasm became our unofficial faculty mantra at the 7th Annual Solstice Flute School & Festival, and I was happier than a prairie dog in soft dirt to spend a memorable week in Midway UT sharing my passion for percussion with extraordinarily talented artists, avidly open-minded students, and enthusiastically engaged audiences.

Will, Kalani Das and Gilbert Levy embracing the groove

Will and Joseph L. Young having entirely too much fun

Kalani and Will toasting Suzanne Teng at the post-fest faculty feed

Brent Haines, Dax and Will puttin’ on the dog

Treehouse Jam

En route to SFS&F I had the extraordinary privilege and pleasure of serving as Special Guest Artist at Michael Trigleth’s Treehouse Jam in Draper UT. Michael’s living room is a cross between the Ethnomusicology Wing of the Smithsonian Institute and the New Instrument Inventor’s Wing at The Musical Instrument Museum, and the Treehouse Tribe proved to be an absolute delight to present to, perform for and jam with.

And in this corner: Will “Pathfinder” Clipman’s traveling Planet of Percussion!

Photo of the Month

Fearless, courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

Poem of the Month

These Days

I answer questions

more and more


I don’t know

not because

I know less

but because

the more I know

the more I know

what I still need to know,

not because

I see less clearly

but more

as the illusion of certainty


into the certainty

of uncertainty,

and I resist solitude

less resolutely

for where else

does one find oneself


how better

to find one’s way

through the darkly beautiful


© Will Clipman 2019

Trust begets fearlessness.

~Guillaume Henri

Will Clipman

poet ~ percussionist ~ maskmaker ~ storyteller ~ performing artist ~ educator


Late Bloomin’ & More Zoomin’

Greetings, One & All~

Having thus far covered 10,000 miles through 18 states (giving credence once again to the adage old drummers don’t die, they just keep driving to the next gig) The Great West Meets East 2019 Spring Tour continues into June, beyond what had been covered in your April-May combo A 440 Newsletter. So, with appreciation for your understanding of the fluidity of the time-space continuum during this creatively engaged and peripatetic period, here’s a look forward to what’s ahead and backward at what just happened. Enjoy!

Solstice Festival

The final leg of The Great West Meets East 2019 Spring Tour will take me up through northeastern Arizona and southwestern Colorado into Utah for the Solstice Flute School & Festival, where I’ll serve as Percussionist-in-Residence and Special Guest Artist. My kick-off event, a workshop and living room concert in Salt Lake City on June 15th, and the official Flute School on June 17th-20th in Midway are both SOLD OUT; but FREE admission is still available for the Festival concerts on June 21st-22nd.

more info at

Conscious Capitalism

Conscious capitalism may sound like an oxymoron, but maybe music can positively influence the way money is made and spent. In April I recorded drums and percussion at the fabled Canyon Records Studio for the third song of a three-song soundtrack that Native American flutist, guitarist and singer Aaron White was commissioned to compose for Conscious Capitalism, with Russ “Magic Man” Marsden at the board. As always, it was a privilege and pleasure to make music with these two stellar talents, and Aaron reports that our song was a smash hit at the Spring CC convocation in Phoenix AZ.

Will, Russ and Aaron at the Canyon Records Studio (photo courtesy Marilyn White)

Nakai & Clipman

RC & Will closed out their Spring touring season with a concert at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, in the pristine classical acoustic environment of the Music School’s brand new Kitt Recital Hall. This event also officially dedicated the Music School’s new R. Carlos & Pamela Hyde-Nakai Plaza, in honor of their contributions to RC’s alma mater.

Some images from earlier stops on the tour in Oregon, North Carolina and Ohio:

our stage set for the Ashland OR Lloyd Barde Productions concert

a live shot from Streamside Concerts in Arden NC, courtesy of Sally Sparks

our stage set for the Pomeroy OH concert at Jorma Kaukonen’s Fur Peace Ranch

Studio News

The new Sherry Finzer & Will Clipman album The Space Between Breaths is in the final mastering and design stage for a scheduled September 20th release on Heart Dance Records. We’ll drop a couple of new singles leading up to the full CD release, and yours truly will keep you in the loop and up to speed as this phenomenal collection of elemental trance grooves for flutes and drums continues to emerge in final form.

The new Michael G. Ronstadt & Will Clipman album Wildly Ethereal is in the mixing stage at Peter Dalton Ronstadt’s LandMark Sound Recorders. No official release date has been set yet for this ground-breaking cello-and-drum world fusion project, but you can keep pace with the process at Michael G.’s Kickstarter site:

Mid-May found me off the road long enough to do a hometown session with a couple of Tucson legends, multi-instrumentalist and composer AmoChip Dabney and master engineer Bill Cashman, laying down Taos drum and Cherokee rattle tracks for Amo’s inter-tribal song Hope of the Hopi at Bill’s Cavern Studios. They don’t call us The Getcha Brothers (as in Amo Will getcha there) for nothing!

Amo & Will at Cavern Studios, dreaming up green-screen CGI (photo courtesy Bill Cashman)

While I was back in Penn’s Woods on the eastern leg of my April-May tour, I snagged a Sunday off to do some recording with guitarist/drummer/songwriter (and my youngest brother) Michael “Mighty” Clipman at Ron Nolen’s Pub Studios in Hyde Park PA. I laid down tracks for a couple tunes by Michael’s world music trio Be, and a track for one of Ron’s new tunes; the highlight of the session was an acoustic guitar-and-udu improvisation with Mighty, which we envision as the nucleus of a full-length duo project.

The Brothers Clipman digging deep into the groove (photo courtesy Ron Nolen)

Photo of the Month

More photographic magic from the camera of Shery Christopher with this unretouched image of the full moon rising among saguaros and cholla here at Rancho Improvisoso.

Cholla Moon, courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

Poem of the Month

Sometimes a poem ripples out in unexpected directions from a single pebble tossed into the pond of imagination. Such is your June Poem of the Month, inspired by a physical object and encompassing disparate subjects, hopefully achieving a unified metaphor.

Green Jaguar

You are here

in the totemic face

of the young Mayan woman

brought to Arizona as an orphan

from a village on the border

of Guatemala and El Salvador

who serves our food tonight

at The Blue Willow.

You are here

in the last improvisation

of the Kokopelli’s Café session,

which didn’t make the album cut

but which the Navajo-Ute flutist and I

always thought was the best thing

we’d ever recorded.

You are here

in the heart of The Old Pueblo:

a block-wide mural

the visionary Polish artist painted

upon returning from her ayahuasca journey

with an Amazonian shaman,

your sapphire eyes

portals to the spirit world.

You are here

on this perfect Sonoran Desert

Sunday afternoon in June:

cloudless azure sky,

brilliant sunshine,

a hint of breeze,

bone dry,

one hundred degrees.

You are here

in this carving of unknown green stone

on which I placed the only bid

at the Northern Jaguar Project’s silent auction,

crouching comfortably in my hand,

my thumb caressing you

between your shoulderblades;

you stare at me

insisting I make good on my vision

of a ceremonial summer solstice mask,

imploring me to do what can be done

to stop the foreign copper mine

that will decimate your habitat

and mine.

We are here

and we are not going away.

© Will Clipman 2019

May your late spring and early summer

be filled with visionary music and art!

Breathe easy and stay focused.

~Guillaume Henri

Will Clipman

poet ~ percussionist ~ maskmaker ~ storyteller ~ performing artist ~ educator


Two Zero One Nine: April Showers AND May Flowers

Greetings, One & All~

I’m sending out a combined April-May issue of your 2019 A 440 Newsletter early to cover a peripatetic stretch of roadwork with abundant April showers and bunches of May flowers. Enjoy a lovely early Spring and be in touch!

Wildly Ethereal

Michael G. Ronstadt and I knocked it out of the park in March at LandMark Sound Recorders with whiz-kid Peter Dalton Ronstadt at the board, and are moving on to mixing and mastering an album’s worth of amazing cello and world percussion cuts for the 2019 release of Wildly Ethereal. One of the highlights of the four-day session was this watercolor by Annabelle Ronstadt, Peter’s two-year-old daughter, who joined us in the studio one day and painted this while we recorded a desert monsoon soundscape we’re calling Home. She also busted a sweet Sufi dervish dance move to our Moroccan frame drum-and-cello improvisation, which we’re calling Annabelle’s Dance.

more project info:

No Piddlin’

Once I got my mind around the fact that he was calling me from the future (it’s 10 AM tomorrow in Narrabri at 4 PM today in Tucson) my March interview with Peter Hammond of 2MAX FM Radio in Australia was absolutely delightful. In and around our fast-paced and insightful Q&A we exchanged classic sayings from our homelands, mine being I’m busier than a prairie dog in soft dirt and his being I’m not just piddlin’ in your pocket, which we’ve reciprocally appropriated for further humorous musical and cultural exchanges.

Heart Dance

Thanks to Sherry Finzer of Heart Dance Records for hooking me up with Pete for the Australian radio interview, and for blowing more incredible flute on our latest session at Clamsville Productions with wunderkind Ryan Johnson at the board and producer John Herrera lending his ears. We’ve now got an album’s worth of multi-flute-and-world-percussion cuts in the can for the 2019 release of our duo album on HDR and are mixing and mastering the latest elemental trance grooves recorded in March.

Sound Sanctuary

Alchemy Crystal Bowl artist and vocalist Tryshe Dhevney and I entered a deep current of sound creation in The Sanctuary at Canyon Ranch in March and were impeccably recorded by master engineer Jim Blackwood of Arizona Public Media for a live album we plan to release in 2019. Read on for an announcement of our April 13 performance!

Medicine Arrow

Roman Orona, Aaron White & Will Clipman delighted an intimate crowd of avant-garde global native fusion aficionados at the storied Alwun House in March, and are composing and demo’ing our original material for an album we plan to record later this Spring.

Marin TV

I’ll kick off the West Coast leg of my West Meets East Spring Tour with my third appearance on the Marin TV show Theatre from the Ground Up in San Raphael CA on March 29th with host Gino Rose and producer Lori Greenleaf.

Myths & Masks

My next stop will be Willits Community Theater in Willits CA for a workshop and performance of Myths & Masks on March 30th, produced by mythopoetic mountaintop mavens Kitty & Creek Norris.

workshop info & registration:

concert info & tickets:

Nakai & Clipman

Then it’s on to The Oregon Trail for a rendezvous with the world’s foremost Native American flutist and long-time Canyon Records collaborator R. Carlos Nakai for three duo concerts at Central Oregon Community College in Bend, Pacific University in Forest Grove, and Rogue Valley Unitarian Church in Ashland.

Ashland info & tickets:

Sound Energy

I’ll circle back to Arizona for Remembering: an evening of sound creation with Tryshe Dhevney in The Sanctuary at Canyon Ranch on April 13th as the culminating event of Sound Energy Week. *This is a private concert exclusively for guests of Canyon Ranch.

Crossing Boundaries

I’ll enjoy the simple pleasures of home at Rancho Improvisoso for a few days before heading out on the Eastern swing of my West Meets East Spring Tour for Primal Voices: an evening of projections, paintings, pan-global percussion and poetry with visionary artist Virginia Maria Romero at Sinuate Media in Las Cruces NM, with tech support from Blue Fenec in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico on Earth Day April 22nd.

event info:

Wisdom Keepers #3 © Virginia Maria Romero

Nakai & Clipman

I’ll then rendezvous again with my esteemed colleague R. Carlos Nakai for two more duo performances at Streamside Concerts in Arden, NC on May 2nd & May 3rd.

Streamside info & tickets:

Nakai & Clipman will then return to Fur Peace Ranch near Pomeroy, OH for a SOLD OUT show on May 4th. Last time we played there, guitar legend Jorma Kaukonen (founder and director of the Fur Peace Ranch Guitar Camp and founding member of Jefferson Airplane and Hot Tuna) sat in with us for our encore, and I’m hoping he’ll agree to do that again if his own touring schedule finds him at home that weekend?!

Photo of the Month

Heart Dance Records President & Lead Artist Sherry Finzer brought her grandson Rex to a Planet of Percussion event I did recently at Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix, and Rex is now my Biggest Little Fan. He was especially intrigued by the hang, so I call this shot Hangin’ with Rex. Dig the face-painting!

photo courtesy Sherry Finzer / Heart Dance Records

Poem of the Month

Your April-May Poem of the Month re-works the old conundrum about the sound of a tree falling in the forest to explore the contrast between the transitory nature of life on the road and the relative stability of life at home surrounded by nature. Enjoy!

The Art of the Ordinary

If no one else sees

a green-orange fireball

tear apart the western sky

one winter night

did it really?

Just because the clouds obscure

a super full blood wolf moon eclipse

doesn’t mean it didn’t appear.

Embracing chaos:

does it eventually

yield some order

or just

more chaos?

Daily miracles abound:

may I always

count them as blessings

and never

take them for granted.

Why do we wait

until the people and things

we love are gone

to miss them?

Precisely because it’s unspectacular

I love returning to this place called home:

if I didn’t have to

I’d never leave.

If I’m not engaged in ceremony

in everything I do,

what is it

I’m doing?

Is refilling

the hummingbird feeder

not a genuflection?

Is pouring fresh water

into the fountain

not a prayer?

May all my arts

be one art:


the extraordinary

in the ordinary.

© Will Clipman 2019

~Wishing one and all
gentle April showers and abundant May flowers
as you spring into Spring~

If one sees the way forward clearly, it is good to speak up and lead;
if not, it is best to keep silent, listen and observe.

~Guillaume Henri

Will Clipman

poet ~ percussionist ~ maskmaker ~ storyteller ~ performing artist ~ educator


Two Zero One Nine: A Most Memorable March

Greetings, One & All~

Time marches on, and 2019 is parading by at an astounding pace. March has already been and will continue to be most memorable here in Willyworld, so enjoy all the good news in this issue of your A 440 Newsletter before March is but a memory in the march of time!


March roared in like a lovable lion on Friday March 1st with three Planet of Percussion performances for students at Villa Montessori School in Phoenix AZ. Judging by their enthusiastic engagement and post-performance kudos, a good time was had by all!

photo courtesy Teale Bloom

On Friday March 8th I’ll return to Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix AZ for a by-invitation Special Needs Day interactive Planet of Percussion performance 9 AM-noon in the Bin Butterfly Pavilion.

On Friday March 22nd, I’ll present four Planet of Percussion performances for students at Continental Elementary School in Green Valley AZ.

Medicine Arrow

Medicine Arrow: Roman Orona, Will Clipman & Aaron White appeared on the Canyon Records Courtyard Stage at the Heard Museum Guild Indian Fair & Market on Saturday & Sunday March 2nd & 3rd for two surprise mini-sets as part of Aaron White’s showcase.

Medicine Arrow will perform a full concert at the legendary Phoenix AZ venue Alwun House at 8 PM on Saturday March 23rd.

info & tickets:

New Recordings

Monday-Thursday March 4th-7th, I’ll record a duo album with cellist and composer Michael G. Ronstadt at his brother Peter Dalton Ronstadt’s LandMark Sound Recorders in Tucson AZ. Michael has dubbed the project Wildly Ethereal and it promises to be all that!

Kickstarter video & info:

Tuesday-Wednesday March 19th-20th I’ll return to Clamsville Productions in Chandler AZ to continue work on my forthcoming Heart Dance Records duo album with flutist and composer Sherry Finzer. We’ve released four singles from the album so far:

And on Friday March 22nd I’ll return to The Sanctuary at Canyon Ranch in Tucson AZ for a live duo recording with Alchemy Crystal Bowl Artist and vocalist Tryshe Dhevney, engineered by Jim Blackwood of Arizona Public Media.

Myths & Masks

I’ll hit the road at the end of March for California and Oregon, beginning with a Myths & Masks workshop and concert on Saturday March 30th at Willits Community Theater in Willits CA.

workshop info & tickets:

concert info & tickets:

Nakai & Clipman

The tour will continue with three R. Carlos Nakai & Will Clipman duo concerts: at Central Oregon Community College in Bend OR at 6 PM on Thursday April 4th; at Pacific University in Forest Grove OR at 7:30 PM on Saturday April 6th; and at Rogue Valley Unitarian Church in Ashland OR at 7:30 PM on Sunday April 7th.

Ashland info & tickets:

Photo of the Month

In forty-two years of living in Tucson, I’ve seen snow in the valley five times. I awoke to this rare and magical Sonoran Desert winter wonderland on February 22nd, as seen looking east from our meditation room at Rancho Improvisoso.

Poem of the Month

Yikes. My performing, recording, teaching and travel schedule over the past month has kept from me from devoting adequate time, energy and creativity to my poetry. I have a couple of new pieces in progress, but they just aren’t ready to present to readers as literate and discerning as you. I know for many of you the Poem of the Month is the best thing about my newsletter, so it is with sincere apologies that I must conclude this A 440 without one. I’ll try to make it up to you in the next issue with at least one and possibly two new offerings that I trust will be of the quality you’ve come to expect!

~Until we meet again, be well and be in touch~

A keen sense of irony is as essential to mental health
as fresh air and sunlight are to physical health.

~Guillaume Henri

Will Clipman

poet ~ percussionist ~ maskmaker ~ storyteller ~ performing artist ~ educator


Two Zero One Nine: Full-on February

Greetings, One & All~

February is full-on here in Willyworld. Enjoy all the good news in this issue of your A 440 Newsletter and have a fabulous February in your world as well!

First Friday

The festivities began promptly on Friday February 1st with R. Carlos Nakai & Will Clipman performing a benefit concert for Arizona State Museum Educational Programs at First United Methodist Church in Tucson AZ in conjunction with Canyon Records.

30-second video clip from our opening improv:

video courtesy Shery Christopher Videography


In my role as a performing artist, my two favorite words are SOLD OUT! So I’m humbly honored that three of my 2019 events are already. . . well, you know. . . .

The RCNQ show at the Musical Instrument Museum Theater in Phoenix AZ on Saturday February 23rd sold out two months in advance! The MIM has added a second show on Sunday February 24th, to my infinite delight, as this temple of sound is one of my favorite stages on the planet to play.

info & tickets for the second Sunday show:

R. Carlos Nakai Quartet

photo courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

The R. Carlos Nakai & Will Clipman concert on Saturday May 4th at Jorma Kaukonen’s Fur Peace Ranch in Pomeroy OH sold out five months in advance! To my knowledge, there has been no second show added, but there are two other excellent shows on Thursday & Friday May 2nd & 3rd at Streamside Concerts in Arden NC, a half-day’s drive away.

info & tickets for Streamside Concerts:

Will, Jorma & RC backstage at our previous sold-out Fur Peace show in 2015

And the Solstice Flute School & Festival on June 17th-22nd in Midway UT, where yours truly will serve as Percussionist-in-Residence, sold out seven months in advance! There is a wait-list, so all hope is not lost for participating in this wonderful week-long event.

February Features

Shape-shifting from stage to classroom, I’ll return to Sonoran Sky School in Scottsdale AZ for my annual Arizona Alive! historical story-writing & storytelling Artist-in-Residency with fourth grade students Monday-Friday February 4th-8th & 11th-15th.

Sonoran Sky Storytellers at our community showcase in 2018

And shape-shifting again from school to studio, I’ll record with Bay-Area flutist, composer and fellow Heart Dance Records artist Monica Williams on Thursday February 7th at Clamsville Productions in Chandler AZ.

This session is part of the Heart Dance Records Summit on Friday & Saturday February 8th & 9th: a weekend of house concerts, jam sessions, round table discussions and recording sessions in Anthem, Cave Creek, Chandler and Scottsdale AZ, masterminded by HDR President Sherry Finzer (stay tuned for news on my 2019 HDR duo album with Sherry!).

Spring POPS

Planet of Percussion will pop up like a desert wildflower in March, with three informances at Villa Montessori School in Scottsdale AZ on Friday March 1st, and a by-invitation performance at one of my all-time favorite venues Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix AZ on Friday March 8th as part of DBG’s Special Needs Day event.

photo courtesy John Running Photography (cropped and lightened by Gabriel Ayala)

Season Previews

The new Medicine Arrow (Roman Orona, Aaron White & Will Clipman) will make its debut at the legendary Alwun House in Phoenix AZ on March 23rd.

Yours truly will make his third appearance on Marin TV in San Raphael CA for a taping of the Theatre from the Ground Up show with Producer Lori Greenleaf and host Gino Rose on Friday March 29th.

On Saturday March 30th I’ll head north to Willits CA to present a daytime workshop and evening concert of Myths & Masks at Willits Community Theater, produced by Kitty & Creek Norris.

info & tickets for the Willits workshop:

info and tickets for the Willits concert:

I’ll then continue north into Oregon for three R. Carlos Nakai & Will Clipman concerts (the first two of which will be combined with day-of-show workshops) in Bend OR on Friday April 5th, Pacific Grove OR on Saturday April 6th, and Ashland OR on Sunday April 7th. The Ashland show will be presented at the Rogue Valley Unitarian Church by Lloyd Barde Productions (stay tuned for info & ticket links to the Bend and Pacific Grove shows).

Ashland info & tickets:

Photo of the Month

Shery Christopher continues to capture astonishing images of our desert skyscape here at Rancho Improvisoso, all au naturel and unretouched: what her eye sees is what it is!

Deep Winter Fire, courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

Poem of the Month

Time or Light

I’m awakened in darkness
by stillness. Even
my breathing is loud.

Don’t brush away that burnt bitterness
just yet; let it linger awhile
on the tongue.

When everything that means
anything hangs in the balance
there’s never enough

time or light. Simple pleasures
fall away one by one until there is only
the illusion of pain.

Minuscule rivulets of lava
flow down from the fontanel
as a final paroxysm shudders:

I can but reconcile myself
moment by moment
to the moment.

Toss the last few shreds
of ego into the caldera of dawn:
how lightly they land and flame out,

and what a relief to realize
I am and have always been
just an old monk!

© Will Clipman 2019

~a fabulously full and fulfilling February to all~

If one can but act with purpose and grace,
everything else will fall into place.

~Guillaume Henri

Will Clipman

poet ~ percussionist ~ maskmaker ~ storyteller ~ performing artist ~ educator

Two Zero One Nine: Notes From The Winter Solstice Full Moon

Greetings, One & All~

My apologies for your missing December 2018 A 440 Newsletter. Technological malfunctions exacerbated by Mercury Retrograde prevented my sending it; and if your in-box was as jammed with holiday spam as mine was, it may have been a blessing in disguise. I’ve included some December highlights in your January 2019 issue, along with new good news and upcoming events. Enjoy!

Fully il-LUMI-nated

Thanks to all the staff and crew at Desert Botanical Garden, and to the hundreds of visitors to Planet of Percussion over the course of the event, for my most enjoyable and successful Las Noches de las Luminarias ever.

photo courtesy of Desert Botanical Garden

Winter Dreams

Nestled in the middle of my December LUMI run were two sold-out Winter Dreams concerts with R. Carlos Nakai and William Eaton at Old Town Center for the Arts, celebrating the winter solstice with our time-honored and timeless interpretations of traditional and original holiday music. Thanks to the entire OTCA staff and crew, and of course to the incomparable Nakai and Eaton, for a wonderful weekend of musical magic.

photo courtesy of Kimberly Kelly

Education Benefit

On Friday February 1st at 7 PM I’ll appear in concert with R. Carlos Nakai at the First United Methodist Church in Tucson to benefit the education programs of the Arizona State Museum.

MIM Theater

On Saturday February 23rd at 7:30 PM I’ll appear in concert with the R. Carlos Nakai Quartet at the world-renowned Musical Instrument Museum Theater in Phoenix, where we’ll premiere our entirely new 2019 acoustic show.

R. Carlos Nakai Quartet

photo courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

Heart Dances

Evening at Angkor Wat, one of the four digital-only singles released by Sherry Finzer & Will Clipman in 2018, is now available on Pandora. Watch for the full CD release in 2019.

Meanwhile, the song Cote d’Ivoire from the CD Trialogue by Sherry Finzer, Darin Mahoney & Will Clipman will be featured in-flight music throughout January on EgyptAir.

Inner Magick

Early Bird Alert!

Save $75 when you register by January 21st

Unmask Your Inner Magick

April 27-28, 2019
The Room at Meadowbrook
4089 Durham Rd., Ottsville, PA 18942

Register now for Unmask Your Inner Magick: a weekend self-realization retreat with award-winning maskmaker, storyteller and musician Will Clipman and visionary author, teacher and personal transformation guide Diane Wing.

Sold-Out Solstice

The 2019 Solstice Flute School & Festival, where I’ll serve as Percussionist-in-Residence June 17-22, sold out in record time. . . see you smart early registrants there.

Poem of the Month

Eternal Question

I assemble my drums each evening
under the Akimel O’odham ramada
in a mesquite bosque along the Rio Salada,
and as the winter sun sets behind the hill
a great horned owl challenges my presence:
Who are you? Who are you?

The eternal question! I must be
this deepening darkness, this desert air
growing colder and moister as night
settles down into the river valley;
I must be these rhythms, these stories
told to illuminated faces emerging

from a tunnel of light who sit
and listen awhile, perhaps
offer praise or ask the way home.
A sliver of waxing crescent moon
points the way: all trails lead back
in time to the center of the garden.

Just before the floodgates open,
right on cue, precisely at the turning
of day to night, the great bird
takes wing and glides directly overhead
as silent as the space between breaths:
a shimmering interlude between deaths.

© Will Clipman 2019

To get done what must be done, in time and on time,
act with impeccable intention and effortless efficiency.

~Guillaume Henri

Will Clipman

poet ~ percussionist ~ maskmaker ~ storyteller ~ performing artist ~ educator

November Grace Notes

Greetings, One & All~

November offers a menu of good news and interesting events in Willyworld, proffered for your enjoyment in this month’s issue of your A 440 Newsletter!

Myths & Masks

I’ll conclude my 22nd annual Myths & Masks Artist-in-Residency at Cheyenne Traditional School on Friday November 2nd, and as always the fourth grade students have boldly gone where no one has gone before in their creative interpretations of our mask-making and poetry-writing activities. Thanks to all at CTS for another inspiring and successful AiR!

Mystery Q

The R. Carlos Nakai Quartet will perform a private concert on Sunday November 4th. We’ve been sworn to secrecy regarding the details for this performance, but we wanted to let everyone know the Q is alive and well and putting together a new show for our upcoming 2019 events. . . stay tuned to Station RCNQ!

photo courtesy Shery Christopher Photography / Prisma painting by J. Basshawk

Blissful Bowls

On Wednesday November 7th I’ll fuse my pan-global percussion with the gemstone, precious metal and mineral-infused crystal bowls of Tryshe Dhevney for a live recording in The Sanctuary at Canyon Ranch, engineered by Jim Blackwood of Arizona Public Media.

Healing Sound

On Wednesday November 14th I’ll return to Acceptance Recovery Center in Scottsdale AZ for another session of my Rhythms of Recovery sound healing workshop with a new group of patients. find out more about ARC and its programs at:

Heart Dance

The latest Heart Dance Records elemental trance groove incantation for flutes and drums by Sherry Finzer & Will Clipman will drop on Friday November 30th and will be available on all streaming and downloading platforms, including Amazon, Spotify and Bandcamp.

iTunes ordering link:

All previous singles now available on all platforms!

Evening at Angkor Wat video by Sherry Finzer:

Kilauea Rain video by Sherry Finzer:

Enjoy this breathtakingly spacious NEW video by Sherry Finzer*

(*as with all our videos, I recommend headphones for deep inner vision listening!)

Garden Grooves

After a few years away, I’ll return to Las Noches de Las Luminarias at Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix this December for fifteen evenings of Global Grooves in a Garden Grove. The event runs every night of the month except December 24-25, and offers an eclectic array of visual art and musical entertainment in the Garden’s gorgeous natural setting. I’ll perform interactive world music and storytelling at the Akimel O’Odham Ramada on the Sonoran Desert Loop Trail from 5:30-9:30 PM on Friday-Monday December 7-10, Wednesday-Sunday December 19-23, and Wednesday-Monday December 26-31.

info & tickets at:

Dusk in the Garden before the gates open on another sold-out night!

Winter Dreams

Just when you thought it was safe. . . The Wilde Boys return to the stage for two nights of Winter Dreams at Old Town Center for the Arts in Cottonwood AZ on Friday & Saturday December 14th & 15th. Celebrate the Winter Solstice with R. Carlos Nakai, William Eaton & Will Clipman in the intimate theater atmosphere of OTCA–these shows have always sold out early, so check for information and tickets at:

photo courtesy Robert Doyle Photography / Canyon Records

Inner Magick

Spring is in the air already and it’s not even winter yet! On April 27th & 28th, 2019, I’ll be in Ottsville PA for Unmask Your Inner Magick: a wonder-filled weekend self-realization retreat with yours truly and renowned author, teacher, intuitive consultant and personal transformation guide Diane Wing in The Room at Meadowbrook. Enrollment is limited and early registration is recommended. For event information and on-line registration, and to hear an insightful and intriguing radio interview with Diane & Will, go to:

Solstice Flutes

And a little further out on the horizon, registration for the 2019 Solstice Flute School & Festival in Midway UT on June 17-22 is now open. Yours truly will be the Percussionist-in-Residence at this event, joining a stellar faculty of stars from the Native American flute galaxy for a week of workshops, interactive collaborations and performances. Enrollment is limited and SFS&F typically fills up months in advance, so again early registration is recommended. For more information and on-line registration, go to:

photo courtesy John Running Photography

Poem of the Month

Lady of the Blue Agave

Realization stabs us suddenly
like blue agave needles
when we move unmindfully.

The tiniest of things drown
in nectar and the vastest
in November light.

She gathers together all those
whose dreams have been crushed
and distills from their broken-heartedness

an essence of fulfillment:
worm-salt, lime, mezcal. Smoke
of transformation. Earthen mineral tang.

I wander in the desert
dazed with gratitude that she
is everywhere: rising

from a blossom of flame,
an angel of light
in our hour of darkness.

(after the sculpture by Natalie Levin)

© Will Clipman 2018

Photos of the Month

I couldn’t choose between these two bookend Photos of the Month, so enjoy a double shot of splendid desert skyscape, one taken at sunrise over the Catalina Mountains to the east by Patty Whitley, and one taken at sunset over the Tucson Mountains to the west by Shery Christopher. In this era of computer generated images and digital photoshopping, it’s worth mentioning that both of these stunning images are completely natural and unretouched: what the artists’ eyes beheld is what you see here.

Sunrise Cloud Vortex courtesy Patty Whitley Photography

Sunset Rain Fire courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

~May yours be a November to remember~

It’s always a good sign when intentions and outcomes align.

~Guillaume Henri

Will Clipman
poet ~ percussionist ~ maskmaker ~ storyteller ~ performing artist ~ educator

Sharing the Autumn Harvest

Greetings, One & All~

With the passage of the Equinox and the waning of the Harvest Moon, it’s been a time rich in golden autumn light as September gives way to October and summer yields to fall. It seems all my spring seed-planting and summer cultivation is yielding a rich and varied autumn harvest, highlights of which I’d like to share with you in this October issue of your A 440 Newsletter. Enjoy!


My September 8th concert with R. Carlos Nakai at The TANK Center for Sonic Arts in Rangely CO was recorded live and followed up with a “studio” recording on September 9th, yielding over three hours of material from which we plan to sculpt a ground-breaking new album. Thanks to everyone at The TANK for a completely unique sonic experience, and to all who attended our sold-out concert both inside and outside this world-renowned venue!

more about The TANK at:

The TANK Center for Sonic Arts

Inner Magick

I’ve embarked on an inspiring new multi-media collaboration with author, intuitive consultant and personal transformation guide Diane Wing. Our first weekend retreat, Unmask Your Inner Magick, is scheduled for April 27-28, 2019 in The Room at Meadowbrook in Ottsville PA. Early registration for this transformational mythic journey of the self is now open and will be capped at thirty participants.

Learn about Diane’s brilliant work and register for our event at

Learn more about The Room at Meadowbrook at

Blissful Bowls

I have also embarked on a scintillating new journey in healing sound with crystal bowl alchemist and Sounds True recording artist Tryshe Dhevney. We took our exploratory maiden voyage on September 26th, and our next creative development session is scheduled for October 5th with workshops, performances and a recording to follow.

Learn more about Tryshe’s beautiful work at


Myths & Masks

Beginning on October 22nd and continuing through November 2nd, I’ll return to Cheyenne Traditional School in Scottsdale AZ for my annual Myths & Masks Artist-in-Residency, working with fourth grade students in maskmaking and creative writing.

Trialogue Air

As befits the timeless music on Trialogue: Sherry Finzer, Darin Mahoney & Will Clipman (Heart Dance Records) our songs continue to receive high-flying airplay on an eclectic array of international airlines. Cote d’Ivoire was heard in September on Egypt Air, Vietnam Airlines andKenya Airways; Dark Horse will be heard in October on Air Mauritius. The world is our stage!

Duo Singles

My series of elemental trance groove incantations with multi-flutist Sherry Finzer continues: we’ve just recorded our fifth single toward a full album, which is planned for release in early 2019 on Heart Dance Records. Meanwhile, our current single The Space Between Breathsdrops on Friday October 26th, and will be available on Amazon, iTunes, Spotify andBandcamp on that date.

Previous singles currently available on all platforms:

Evening at Angkor Wat

video link:

Kilauea Rain

video link:

music links:



Sherry Finzer and I will back in the studio at Clamsville Productions in Chandler AZ onOctober 8th to record our next single, so stay tuned to your A 440 for further news!

Poem of the Month

Poetry arises from a moment of absolute attention combined with the good fortune to be in the right place at the right time. Your October Poem of the Month celebrates just such a coincidence of discipline and luck, with gratitude to Jan Moore of Romancing the Stone for his generosity and artistry.

Toning the Stone

Once in a great while
one arrives at precisely the right place
at precisely the right time,

like when we wandered undirected
up a winding canyon road in Santa Fe
and heard the rhythm of hammer

and chisel on stone. We stood
and watched a master sculptor
chip away everything unessential

to reveal a flowing form in living marble:
a curving surface that would then be papered
with finer and finer grains of sand

to the exquisite smoothness
of a woman’s inner thigh. Fragments fly
like shrapnel by my ear, so close

I can almost hear him toning the stone
in a quarry near the Chiricahua Mountains
where this metamorphic elemental fusion

was born in the earth’s molten heart:
drumming on a chunk so massive
it had to be rolled downhill toward

his truck; listening for the perfect
notes that sing a song of solidness
and let him know this is the one.

(with thanks to Jan Moore for the title phrase)

© Will Clipman 2018

Photo of the Month

Ditto the above for photography: Shery Christopher mindfully takes her camera with her on her sunrise walks around our property, so it was really no accident that she captured this oceanic sky in the middle of the Sonoran Desert as she came back up our driveway the other day. In over forty years of living here, I had never seen clouds like this. . . until now!

photo courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

~May the golden light of autumn illuminate your path~