1991 – 2000
I put AtmaSphere together in 1991 to start playing music that centred around polyrhythms. Daryl Pratt (vibraphone and effects), Adam Armstrong (electric and acoustic bass) and Dev Gopalasamy formed the original band. Then in 1991 I changed the emphasis of the band by adding Carmen Warrington’s spoken word. I made the decision to keep the band as 4-piece, and focus more on the synergy of meditation and the very open sound of vibes and bass.
We played many jazz festivals and local clubs in Sydney such as the Harbourside Brasserie, the Basement and Strawberry Hills Hotel. At one gig, a member of the audience was overheard remarking “I’ve heard this band drunk, stoned and straight, and the best way to hear them is straight!”
AtmaSphere released 2 CDs – Flying in 1993 with guest Mike Nock and Don Burrows and Seasons of the Heart in 1999 with guest Justine Bradley (vocals)
A highlight was the series of concerts we presented at the Pilgrim Theatre called “Lyrical Jumpcut” featuring the late Roger Frampton and with special guest from USA, Pulitzer prize winning poet Yusef Komunyakaa. Adam was overseas at the time and we welcomed Steve Hunter for the concerts.
AtmaSphere was invited to open the new room at Bennett’s Lane, the Jazz Lab, in 2000, with Evripides Evripidou on bass, as Adam had by now relocated permanently to New York. With Daryl in Sydney and Carmen and I in Melbourne, it was no longer possible to give full focus to the project after 2000.
Certainly one of the most creative periods of my career, and the beginning of having courage to put my name at the front of a project.