The Music of Frank Perry
THE MUSIC OF FRANK PERRY
Frank Perry has been pioneering meditative music with Tibetan singing bowls and Eastern sacred percussion since the 1960’s. Originally a jazz drummer he soon began to move away from more conventional forms of music after an early spiritual awakening. His search for a musical equivalent to his inner experiences of heightened states of consciousness, and for sounds which could induce such feelings in the listener led him to the ancient singing bowls of Tibet. These bowls have been made for centuries – until the 18th century – according to secret metallurgic recipes using seven different metals, including gold and silver. In order to make these metals alloy, secret mantras had to be recited. The bowls were then hand-beaten. In addition to their sound-colour, which is determined by their size and shape, as well as the mixture of metals, some of the bowls are dedicated to specific deities of the Buddhist pantheon. The deities actually appear on the inner levels when the bowl is being played. Frank has bowls dedicated to the Taras, both white and green, to Maitreya, the future Buddha and to the Adi – the primordial – Buddha. Other bowls are a ‘whispering’ bowl, featured with a ‘talking’ bowl on his latest album “Divine peace”. This ‘talking’ bowl was given to Frank by Khyntse Rinpoche, a Tibetan master, in 1982 and it has a powerful purifying effect on the aura. Another rare bowl in Frank’s possession is an ancient exorcism bowl. He can literally perform exorcisms with it, and does so mainly from his private sound-healing practise, liberating people from negative energies and entities.
These bowls belong to the ancient Bon religion of Tibet, representing expanding Earth energies, whereas the Buddhist contribution to sacred ritual percussion consists of the bells, which represent sky-and-spiritual energies. Primarily they were used by itinerant monks and yogis for a great variety of purposes including healing, shamanic trance and induction of altered states of consciousness – in very specific ways! Frank has classified over 40 different types of bowls. At present he is writing a book about them, the definitive guide to their secrets, saving and preserving for mankind this extremely ancient knowledge of the spiritual power of sound: Nada Brahma. Much of this knowledge has been lost, but frank is able to channel it thanks to his Tibetan guides and his own memories of other lifetimes.
His instruments include a vast array of meditation gongs from Java, temple bells from China and Japan as well as instruments he has invented himself. His music induces extraordinary meditative states of consciousness, both in and out of the body. Its primary function is sacred, however, all the sounds coaxed from a huge variety of instruments are extremely beautiful and speak directly – as any great music will – to the mind and the heart.
By Andreas Bettray (Wilde Ones volume 4.)