Greetings, One & All~

Our record-setting 2021 monsoon has delivered epic thunder-and-lightning storms, biblical deluges, flash floods and all-day straight-down soakings, making July the wettest month ever recorded in The Old Pueblo. Our Sonoran Desert is lush and green and blooming, our wildlife is exceptionally wild, and yours truly has enjoyed some vigorous shovel-and-wheelbarrow workouts repairing washed-out driveways here at Rancho Improvisoso. In contrast to the dramatic weather, this month will be quiet on the performance front; so your August A 440 Newsletter looks ahead to cool new events on the horizon for late summer and early autumn. Be well, walk with a cool body and be in touch!

Musical Meditation

On Saturday September 4th at 8:30 AM PT/11:30 AM ET, I will co-present an on-line morning musical meditation with composer and multi-instrumentalist Michael Brant DeMaria to launch the 2021 IANDS Virtual Conference, which includes visionary artist and author Nancy Rynes among its keynote speakers.

information & registration at

Nakai & Clipman

On Sunday September 12th, the R. Carlos Nakai & Will Clipman duo will be in concert at Wright Opera House in Ouray, Colorado, performing ever-evolving themes and variations from our GRAMMY-nominated Canyon Records album Awakening the Fire interwoven with our trademark in-the-moment improvisational magic.

info & tickets at

Indigo Debut

On Tuesday September 21st at 6 PM, the new acoustic world jazz ensemble Indigo Social Club, comprised of guitarist Marshall Jones, bassist/violinist Rob Paulus, vocalist Cantrell Maryott, and percussionist Will Clipman will perform its debut concert at 17th Street Music Club in Tucson, Arizona. Arising from the heart of The Old Pueblo with a distinctly Sonoran Desert vibe, these four well-known Tucson personalities coalesce to create a synergistic sound characterized by startling originality and impeccable musicianship.

info at

Garden Grooves

On Friday October 1st at 6 PM and 8:30 PM, I will perform two shows of Garden Grooves: An Evening of World Music with Will Clipman at Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix, Arizona.

info & tickets at


On Sunday November 6th at 3 PM I will reunite with guitarist Darin Mahoney and flutist Sherry Finzer as Trialogue for a Heart Dance Records Cul-de-Sac Concert at The Landings at Anthem, Arizona, performing music from our eponymous Zone Music Award-winning album.

for information & registration contact


On Friday November 12th the R. Carlos Nakai Trio, comprised of Native American flute master R. Carlos Nakai, phenomenal multi-instrumentalist AmoChip Dabney and pan-global percussionist Will Clipman, will perform an outdoor evening concert on the historic and newly remodeled Hotel Congress Plaza Stage in Tucson, Arizona.

info & tickets at

photo art courtesy of Shery Christopher Photography

Photos of the Month

Our monsoon has blessed us not only with record-setting rainfall but also with some otherworldly sunsets, as exemplified by this unedited gem featuring a photo-bomb by Lorenzo the Horned Lizard. In the morning, the ground stays moist enough long enough to give rise to extremely rare desert mushrooms, as this shy little beauty emerging in the shade of our water dragon sculpture inside the walled garden reveals.

photo courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

photo courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

Poem of the Month

I wrote the original version of this poem in 2013, but I was never satisfied enough with it to publish it. Current events prompted me to unearth it and perform a wholesale archaeological restoration: having interred this ancient text for seven years in the fertile soil of imagination, myth and dream, I may finally have rolled this boulder to the top of the hill. . . or does your August Poem of the Month remain as Sisyphean an undertaking as the labors it attempts to describe?! I leave it to you, gentle reader, to decide. . . .

Sisyphus in Sonora

This morning I resume the ritual futility:

this year’s mythic monsoon washed out

the earthen bridge from my world to the

outer world again, and again I rebuild it

shovelful by shovelful, just so another

thunderstorm tomorrow can obliterate

my work again. Then I’ll begin. Again.

Desert sun beats down through a briefly

opened window of blue sky relentlessly

as ever that ancient one did; this sodden

dirt is no less heavy than that rock. I roll

numberless wheelbarrow loads up the hill

and dump them in the flash flood’s jagged

scar, drenched in my own mineral deluge.

I have only cheated death once, not twice (or

was it death that cheated me out of a blissful

oneness with all, beyond suffering?) and I like

to think I’m neither avaricious nor deceitful; yet

here I am, reliving this indelibly engraved story

as surely as flowing water takes the path of least

resistance and finds its way to the deepest level.

No good deed ever goes unpunished, so they say.

But my weather gods and goddesses, unlike those

anthropomorphically petty and vengeful old deities,

are impartial; so, at the end of this day and all those

endless days to come, I don’t feel judged or damned

by some omnipotent and unseen hand, just grateful

for the blessing of rain in a drought-stricken land.

© Will Clipman 2021

~Be it rain or sun
may the blessing you need
be the one you receive~

The only way to finish anything is to start something.

~Guillaume Henri

Will Clipman

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