Monday, 22 August 2016

The Kindred Spirit of Wryd and Wonderful

I have been to  literally 100's of festivals in my lifetime, performed as a singer/songwriter at most of them , but never have I experienced wonderful, in the way that I did on Sunday.

It was as I pulled off the M4 that my heart really started pounding.

'Steady now old girl,' I told myself, as I felt my nerves racing in my chest.

You see, although I have been a singer/ songwriter all my life, I have stopped performing at festivals since a life threatening illness 10 years ago left me a different person, both in terms of my confidence and my physical ability. 

          foto kindly by Tina Wills

Until recent years, I have focused the majority of my time instead, supporting others through Community Arts, to realise their performance aspirations. I have loved every minute of it.

However, through a very personal journey, my life has been transformed by embracing fully the loving and healing vibration of sound, mantra and reiki, to the point that now, I feel able not only to care about others, but also to care equally about my own desires.

And it is these desires that led me to Wyrd & Wonderful. 

In my heart, Wyrd was always much more than a return to performance. Better described as being witnessed in the sharing of my raw, naked soul through the chanting of the ancient Sanskrit mantra which has become my daily healing practice;  I felt a deep sense of truth in my new performance self, an authenticity, a sacredness, the start of a connected journey that  had started to make me feel so incredibly vulnerable. 

'Shall I turn back and make my apologies?' I thought as my car got nearer and nearer to the beautiful Neath Valley.

But I needn't have worried because Wyrd and Wonderful is not just a festival. I should have guessed really, because it is run by dear, beloved friends. Wyrd and Wonderful is an instant family of kindreds, who love each other and care. You can feel it before you even get out of the car.

As I chanted on the main stage,  I was inside my own meditation but when I opened my eyes, I found that others were meditating with me. I don't have any foto's of my sharing because it didn't enter my head to capture it in any way, other than in my heart.

Some of the women in the audience were crying and yet smiling. I guess they recognised  my level of vulnerability in themselves. 

I did not question nor feel responsible for entertaining anyone. Instead, I allowed myself and Wyrd allowed me, to simply be who I am, without stereotypical definition.

I was there to give back a loving vibration to Wyrd, to give part of myself to the whole. 

I wanted to do this because my beautiful friends, Tina Wills, Elizabeth Mc Avoy and Ian Mc Avoy had very kindly set up a stall to raise funds for my work with Sound Memories Dementia Friendly Radio Project (

I can not thank them enough for this loving kindness. They are truly angels. 

And they had arranged this kindness with Sheila Bassett. Thank you Sheila. And thank you James Spate, the Stage Manager for not even flinching when I said, 'Actually, I am going to chant 4000 year old love mantra with a gong.'

When I came off stage, people were so lovely to me. Hugging me, wanting to meet me, holding me and saying the most wonderfully kind things.

And in those moments, my battered and beaten body mattered little, my healing voice smiled inside me.

Having listened intently, the Universe started working her magic.

A lovely man wanted to meet me, he had felt so connected to my mantra. It transpired he had a degenerative spine condition, so I was able to offer him loving reiki.

One of the women who had been in the tent, gave me a huge hug and I really felt a loving connection. I saw her later standing by the most AMAZING stall and it transpired that it was hers! 

The picture above of the stall is not from Sunday. It's from another festival. I borrowed it from Willow's facebook. I was so taken by the stall that I actually forgot to take a picture of it! LOL. Beautiful handmade shaman drums and beaters! Just stunning. I was in my element. Her and her partner make them. They are a lovely couple called Willow & Croweye. 

And then I met another woman who had heard me from her stall. We chatted. She had Tibetan singing bowls and she asked me if I would like to play them. I did. They were very beautiful. I said to her, 'I am sure I know you from somewhere?' But we did not know each other, not in this life anyway, maybe from another, we laughed.

I bumped into Sheila, who said, 'Oh I have someone for you to meet later. I have told her all about you and she wants to meet you.' Then she disappeared with her lovely advertising board and lollipop tree.

My dear friend Tina and I went to the main field. We could hear drums. When we got there, the most incredible shaman drum healing was happening. 

There were about 10 drummers encircling a woman in a chair, who had her eyes closed. 

Everyone was playing at different levels. Someone pulled out and Tina very kindly asked her if I could take her place, she generously offered me her drum. I joined the gathering of healing shaman drummers. It was a very special and privileged experience led by ... Willow and Croweye! What wonderful humans they are.

Willow asked me if I could offer ancient mantra for the Opening of other festivals. I said absolutely. It is the exact desire of my heart to travel around and chant to open festivals. I can't think of a more beautiful way to live my life. I explained to her that it didn't feel right to ask people and that I would trust that it will happen if it is meant to be, she said that perhaps she can ask around for me. That is so kind and loving.

Sheila took my hand and led me off to the person she wanted me to meet. Well, I'll be blowed, it was the woman with the Tibetan singing bowls on her stall that I had met earlier and was convinced I knew!We couldn't believe it.

'It wasn't a past life I knew you from, it was the future!'

It transpired that this familiar woman was called Rain and she takes her beautiful stand to festivals all over the UK. On her stall she stocks music Cd's and is looking for meditation music that is  'something different'.

We chatted about my 4 ongoing CD projects that will be finished by the New Year and she said that she would be very keen to stock and sell all 4 projects. She gave me her card to contact her to negotiate terms. 

AMAZING!! It means that before I have even finished the 4 projects, I have a festival distributor! I reckon Sheila Bassett is actually a fairy godmother! How else could she know to bring us together?

Thank you so much Sheila, I said quietly to her and gave her a big hug.

'It's what I do ' she replied with a smile so serene, I became certain she really is of faery folk.

So, then I offered Rain and her husband a mantra from my open heart to theirs'. We sat opposite each other and I sang them an ancient heart mantra in gratitude and thanks.

When I returned to the Sound Memories stall that Lovely Liz was so lovingly looking after while she braided people's hair, I met a wonderful woman who was so kind about my chanting. She had also bought many things from the Sound Memories Stall. It transpired a family member of hers' had died with dementia only last year. I offered her a loving gift of a mantra healing.

We went to her room and we set her intentions. I then channelled the  mantra for her. We sat very still together on her bed, me chanting for her. It was a moving experience.

The day whizzed by. It was time for me to go home and a young lad needed a lift to the train station. Without a second thought, I offered to take him because that is what Wyrd people do, they are Wonderful to each other!

So in summary, with my hand on my heart, I can say that Wryd was not just Wonderful, it was magical in every single sense!

In my next blog I will show you the very beautiful gift that was sent to me when I got home that evening from Ian Mc Avoy who was the outstanding Sound Engineer all day at Wyrd ... 

For more details of Wyrd & Wonderful Festival
at Hafan Y Coed, please look at this website link :

Extra Special Thanks to Tina for quietly making it so 
& never taking the credit. Namaste, dear one.

And true to form, Tina has just very gently reminded me that perhaps it would be a good idea to mention my fundraising albums on my bandcamp page, where I record and sell my Meditation Music and Mantra to raise  funds for my work with Sound Memories Dementia Friendly Radio

The beautiful Dream catchers featured in this blog are hand made
 by Sheila Bassett and her partner in wonderful workshops. 

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