Greetings, One & All~

The first new moon of the new year bestows upon us the gift of an empty vessel: an opportunity to renew, restore and replenish. I’m all in, as you’ll note with a few glimpses at what’s to come in this first issue of your 2022 A 440 Newsletter. The future starts now!

Amber & Will

Folk-rock goddess and Unity in the Valley Musical Director Amber Norgaard invited me to accompany her in her morning service on Sunday January 2nd, and naturally I said YES. Those of you who have frequented Willyworld for a while will remember yours truly playing drums in Amber’s live band and on her classic album Long Way Home. If you haven’t treated yourself to Amber’s uplifting singing and songwriting, now’s the time!

photo courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

Wilde Boys

Your intrepid explorers of sonic terra incognita The Wilde Boys (R. Carlos Nakai, William Eaton & Will Clipman) have a new Canyon Records album in the can and will return to the studio on January 18th-20th to mix and master those tracks with producer Robert Doyle and engineer Russ “Mixmaster” Marsden. Watch this space for details on our eagerly anticipated 2022 release. . .

Three Wise Guys, courtesy Kimberly Kelley Photography

. . . and in the live performance realm: The Nakai, Eaton & Clipman Trio concert on Sunday March 6th is indeed at Trinity Cathedral at 4 PM, but the location is 100 W. Roosevelt Street in historic downtown Phoenix, not Scottsdale as I had erroneously announced in your December newsletter. Thanks, gentle readers, for fact-checking me!

Peace Through Music, courtesy Kimberly Kelley Photography

Myths & Masks

The weekend of March 11th-13th will find your humble narrator in Ridgway CO for a Friday night Myths & Masks concert at the historic Sherbino Theater, followed by two days of community workshops on Saturday and Sunday, co-sponsored by Weekawken Creative Arts and the Ouray County Performing Ats Guild.

photo courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

Indigo Opening

On Sunday March 27th the acoustic world jazz ensemble Indigo Social Club (featuring Marshall Jones on guitars, Cantrell Maryott on vocals, Rob Paulus on upright bass and violin, and yours truly on pan-global percussion) will open the show for Old Pueblo legend Peter Dalton Ronstadt and his band at the iconic Miracle Mile venue Monterey Court.

photo courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

Photo of the Month

The Sonoran Desert has been blessed with abundant rain in the time between the winter solstice and the new year, and with rain comes rainbows. This magnificent specimen manifested just long enough for nature photographer Shery Christopher to frame it arcing from one saguaro to another across the north quarter here at Rancho Improvisoso.

Rainbow Blessing for the New Year, courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

Poem of the Month

Three Score and Ten

In this process, the smith and shaman

are twin brothers linked together

in the extraction of energy from matter.

~Terence McKenna, Trialogues at the Edge of the West

Look, I’m zeroing in on my biblical

three score and ten: I don’t have time

for anything less than transformational.

We’re only interested here in what can’t

be done without; and friends, at the end

of the day, that is precious little and few.

If you remember me at all, remember me

as un hombre de su palabra and remember

this: in the original tongues, myth is truth.

Compared to the shard of jasper I picked up

earlier, this chunk feels like ancient ceramic:

edges too sharp not to be human, rock hard

and with the heft of earth. The sunset trail

is lightly trodden and somewhat overgrown

yet the serpentine way is clear. Bottled mojo:

just a dash of the Florida Water you gave me

backstage at Invisible Theatre on closing night

bestows upon me clarity, fearlessness and joy.

That’s right, I said bestows upon me. Listen,

the way I feel right now I might come out with

an unto or a thou–maybe even a doth or didst.

Maybe wisdom is not so much a destination as

an endless and earnest journey, fueled by one’s

hope the world will continue to find one useful.

See, I’m a graduate summa cum LOUD of the

Les S. Moore School of Everything, so please

don’t harsh my mellow or clutter up my space

with anything less than essential: ‘tis the season

not to consume and accumulate beyond all need

but rather to pare down and give away as needed.

Now that the desert weather has turned wintry

here in northern Sonora, you’ll find me parked

in front of a big stone hearth intently studying

the architecture of chaos as fire consumes tree

turning matter back into energy and burnishing

a wizened visage with Bronze Age light. Night

falls early on this full Cold Moon: the last one

before the winter solstice and the smallest as she

traces her longest arc between Orion and horizon

and I thank her one more time for bestowing her

calm, cool, reflective beauty upon all of us lost and

weary travelers below who long for just such grace.

© Will Clipman 2021

~May the new year be peaceful, joyful and healthful for all~

Wisdom is not so much a destination as an endless and earnest journey.

~Guillaume Henri

Will Clipman

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