Ann Licater – Quiet Spaces: Flute Meditations for Mindfulness and Relaxation
“Quiet Spaces: Flute Meditations for Mindfulness and Relaxation,” by Ann Licater, her fifth album release on her independent record label, Cul de Sac Mystic Productions, is heart-opening and soul-stirring. You can feel those emotions run deep within your body when you listen to this music, because you aren’t just listening. You’re taking it in. You’re deeply inhaling every note of it. This is not just someone playing the flute. This is someone touching your soul with theirs. And that is love. This kind of love oozes out of every pore of this music; every phrase, every note, every subtle nuance and soft reverb, every gentle trill. And as such, this is also very healing music.
The flute is an ancient instrument; perhaps the oldest musical instrument known to us. So, there is something inherently primal about flute music. It’s something that beckons to our spirits in a manner that we recognize with our hearts, and even way before we ever imagined we would or could be separated from them in any way. Perhaps the hauntingly beautiful music of the flute is indelibly imprinted upon our souls. And for very good reasons.
“Mindfulness,” essentially, is the purposeful direction of where you place your attention and energy. Here, in Ann Licater’s album, “Quiet Spaces: Flute Meditations for Mindfulness and Relaxation,” that mindfulness is focused on fifteen tracks and forty-six minutes of consummate flute artistry, designed for inner peace and relaxation of not only mind, but of mind, body, and spirit together, coalescing these back into one cohesive unit in a flowing, graceful dance.
Here, Ann performs on silver alto flute, Native American flute, Native American-style flute, transverse folk flute, and adds some soft, ethereal vocals to track 9, “Celestial Traveler.” Apart from guest artist, Grammy® nominated Peter Phippen, who co-produced — along with Ann and veteran recording engineer Ivar Lunde, Jr. — and appears on three tracks (“Aspen Awakening,” “Celestial Traveler,” and “Tranquil Dreams”), the album is minimilistic in terms of other instrumentation. Because it doesn’t need anything else, we are brought right into mindful space and relaxation, effortlessly it seems. There is a definite art to effortlessness and Ann Licater has that skill mastered.
Peter Phippen on electric bass is the perfect vowel to the consonant, adding understated depth and expansive gentleness. Clearly, we are on a spiritual journey here, that from start to finish leads us deeper and deeper into the reflection. And willingly we go.
Now, there is certain music — even as we are continually deluged with all manner of other auditory bombardments — that stands out in the crowd and fills the soul; fills quiet, empty spaces in your soul. You know it when you hear it. And there is certain music that is just classic, elegant, timeless, and that strikes a chord deep within your heart chakra and remains in your emotional body long after the song is technically over. That is this beautiful music by Ann Licater.
The album opens with the title track, “Quiet Spaces,” and you know, right from the first few opening notes, that your soul is in for a deeply special experience. Straight away, this music stirs something deeply elemental inside. We begin to find ourselves again with “Ancestral Gathering,” which is hauntingly beautiful, reflectively layered, and continues the opening peace. Here we gather. It’s a beckoning to our spirits, both individually and collectively. Both “Ancient Shores” and “Canyon Solace” evoke feelings of expansiveness, exploration, yet also feelings of “home” at the same time. Perhaps we are always home wherever we may find ourselves. “Return to Peace” has us feeling as if here we want to stay. The call and answer style of the lovely “Wings of Sleep” is both relaxing and enchanting. “Woven Hearts” is spacious and heart-filling at the same time. The closing track, “Celtic Sun Salutation,” is a delightful ending. With its peaceful, uplifting notes, one can’t help but feel appreciation for life infusing every cell.
It can seem quite challenging to find “quiet spaces” these days, either inner or outer, in a time when meditation may still be perceived as “work,” and relaxation seems to be an elusive effort rather than something completely natural. The truth is that within the quiet places reside all the answers. “Quiet Spaces: Flute Meditations for Mindfulness and Relaxation,” by Ann Licater is not only deeply calming and soothing, but profoundly healing on multiple levels and layers. You’ll want to get the whole album, available at AnnLicater.com.
Note: Ann Licater’s independent record label, Cul de Sac Mystic Productions, distributes its digital content under exclusive license to Disney Music Group with music publishing administered by Seven Peaks Music.
Publicity and media relations:
Beth Ann Hilton, The B Company
Phone: (310) 560-8390
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