Greetings, One & All~

Time waits for no one, so there’s no time like the present to begin a new year of shared creativity. Wishing your and yours a peaceful and prosperous 2023 with this January issue of your A 440 Newsletter. Enjoy it all in joy!

Bright & Early

The new year’s music starts bright and early at 10 AM on Sunday January 1st: my first Unity Duo service of 2023 with singer/songwriter/guitarist/keyboardist and Unity in the Valley Musical Director Amber Norgaard; a second helping will be served up this month on Sunday January 29th. Watch this space for all our 2023 dates as they unfold!


The culture and lifestyle magazine VoyagePhoenix recently featured your humble narrator in its Inspiring Stories series: the interview and a generous photo spread can be enjoyed in the online edition at:

Thanks to the 2,000+ folks who have engaged thus far with the Facebook post of this item by Shery Christopher, who graciously manages my Fb Artist Page for me. Full disclosure: I don’t do social media; so while I sincerely appreciate and thoroughly enjoy your enthusiastic and supportive comments, please email me for a personal reply!

photo courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

STC Singles

2023 will see the release of a series of singles by my newest musical collaboration: STC, featuring Chris Screven (guitars & midi instruments); Joe Townend (basses & flutes); and Will Clipman (drums & world percussion). Our uniquely original fusion of contemporary instrumental and world music styles will be available for downloading and streaming on CDBaby beginning with the February 1st drop of The Migration, followed by first-of-the-month drops of Where Did They Go? and Jupiter & Saturn, with an album’s worth of subsequent singles to follow. Watch this space for STC updates!

band photo and cover art courtesy Joe Townend Media

Poem of the Month

For Richard Shelton, 1933-2022: friend, mentor and poetic soul of the Sonoran Desert.


When I have given up words

I will have become what I have to say.

~ Richard Shelton, Desert

You only demanded one thing of me:

to do what I do well as well as I could.

You were only as relentless with others

as you were with yourself. Maybe less.

You taught me that words are things

with texture and aroma, gravity and

an inner light, not mere abstractions

that substitute for things themselves.

You led me to love this sacred desert

more than I love the sound of my own

voice, though the word sacred would

have stuck in your craw like cholla

because when everything is sacred

nothing is, and because that which is

profane has earned its rightful place

in this thorny rock-strewn paradise.

We sat across from each other at both

the gleaming altars of academia and

the scarred discarded desktops inside

prison walls, and your demand never

wavered: pay attention, speak truth,

make every syllable count as if your

life depends on it. Sometimes it does.

Let beauty take care of itself because

it always does, and doesn’t need our

help, however much we long to give it.

© Will Clipman 2022

Photos of the Month

Shery Christopher was up and about early (as she is every day) on the first day of winter to witness the spectacular beauty of the winter solstice sunrise illuminating the rising crescent moon here at Rancho Improvisoso; moments later, one of our resident great horned owls hooted a greeting behind her and then flew right over her head from west to east to greet the solstice dawn. Enjoy!

Winter Solstice Sunrise with Crescent Moon, courtesy Shery Christopher Photography

A week later, in the midst of some welcome end-of-the-year winter rain, yours truly emerged from a recording session in The Boom Boom Room at precisely the moment when sunset ignited the western horizon, and snapped this bookend image to close out 2022 and begin 2023 in beauty. Enjoy!

Fire & Rain, ICU Imagery

~May the new year bring you peace and prosperity~

Adventure is found not in the what but in the how.

~Guillaume Henri

Will Clipman

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