Pioneer: Tisziji Muñoz

In addition to sharing his own story with Guitar Moderne, Henry Kaiser was kind enough to conduct an interview with the wildly, underappreciated Tisziji Muñoz. A true pioneer of modern guitar. Though fleetingly mentioned here, in addition to his many accomplishments in the world of spiritually driven music Tisziji Muñoz served as a mentor to Paul Shaffer (yes that Paul Shaffer). That fact will become less surprising when you come across the traces of humor in his extensive discourse on music and the spirit. Prepare to meet Mr. Muñoz.

To use the jazz terminology: Tisziji Muñoz is about the heaviest cat that I know of playing electric jazz guitar today. Folks can make comparisons to other guitarists influenced by John Coltrane, i.e. McLaughlin, Holdsworth, Santana, etc., but Tisziji  has been in a class of his own for more than 40 years. Perhaps because he taps directly into the same cosmic energy that Coltrane channeled; who knows?

He’s appeared on more than 50 albums, many of them on his own Anami Music label. He’s played and recorded with many well-known jazz luminaries: Ravi Coltrane, Pharoah Sanders, Marilyn Crispell, Rashied Ali, Bob Moses, Dave Liebman, John Medeski—the list is long. But somehow he remains almost a secret; hardly known in the world of guitar.

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I’ve known and enjoyed Tisziji’s music for decades and first contacted him in the late ’80’s through the contact info on his Visiting This Planet double LP. I was surprised that his main gig seemed to be as a spiritual teacher. Years later I met Tisziji and recorded an album with him. We have stayed in-touch and I buy every recording of his, as soon as it’s released. I get something special from each one. Ali Akbar Khan used to talk about music being food for the soul. That’s one thing I get from listening to him.

This interview contains language that you don’t usually see in guitar interviews. Give it a chance; there are many things to find in here that could be super useful. Tisziji means it when he says,

“At first, you just hear the guitar.

You discover the paradoxical mystery it is.

The guitar is no guitar.

Its music is not guitar music!

Then, you realize the mountain my guitar is you must climb.

Having climbed the mountain, the great leap is taken.

Finally, you just disappear into the sky of vast, clear Heart-mind.

The Hu-dha’s music is from the Heart’s ecstatic Sound Stream.”

From Ornette Coleman to Sun Ra to Anthony Braxton, many musical masters of the 20th century found their own ways to express the inexpressible with the English language, and that’s what you will find in this interview. Tisziji is not afraid to mince words, and not afraid to use a lot of them. See how the voices inside you respond to what Tisziji has to say.

But first, if you haven’t already, take a look at the video above and hear what he says through the guitar—or through the no-guitar, or not through the no-guitar.  Whatever it is that Tisziji is doing in this video, it’s not something that you can argue with; it’s as heavy as any music can be.

What’s the biggest musical surprise that you have experienced in your life?

The joyous surprise was that, as an infant, music (relative to certain drum techniques and patterns relevant to Afro-Rican dance music) and levitation (suspension of breath and consciousness outside of the body) were practically synonymous. Hence, began a lifelong yogic process in the form of an intuitive musical practice of unfoldment (expansion of awareness and insound knowing) born of musical sound revealed through a malady I call “Drum Fever”—having to not stop playing drums. I was playing drums and being out of the body at the same time. I played to get and stay out.

“He takes you out there and leaves you there.”—Paul Shaffer

While we all know that drums are primarily about time and rhythm, my experience, as a child born to spiritualist healers, was that of an acknowledged collapse of the time/space, rhythm/no rhythm, matter/energy, paradox/paradigm relative to the physical body and being left as a child to explore the middling, thus, not dark, astral planes of light (aka Kundalini-psychic chakra) energy. After several years of this, my Aunt Gracie was called in by my mother, Sat-janami, for confirmation, psychic knowledge, and sympathetic support for whatever I seemed to be going through at the time. In my case, this was a direct form of musical education, in no way unique to me. This was not just “out” music but also “out in-space music.” We are the out-in space. This is Avant or savant-garde drum-sound, time and etheric space training for the eagle-eyed, elephant-eared and alligator-skinned warriors of Fire-Sound training. This is for us, Henry.

You are a spirit player. Inclusive in that is that playing music is a prayer in the spiritual sense. What kind of prayer? Asking, celebrating, thanking? What else? Any advice to players on mindset, or no-mindset, when playing?

Yes, I am called a spirit player but, in fact, you mean first Fire-Born, and then Heart-Blood and Spirit-played. It is not merely a prayer process relative to the self-thought mind-body, but a progression more along the lines of psychic or subtle effects generating grace-waves from the always existing Heart of Itself, which creates a body-mind healing for those who receive or resonate with this music/sound, or in those who are close to me in Spirit, or who need this type of creative sound medicine. Everyone has free, but qualified, access to this same Heart reality, if they know how to open to it as “what is true” for oneself at the pure Spirit level.

My intention and practice (the very core of all true prayer) is to live as an ongoing healing force for all beings in all worlds, bar none, high, low, indifferent, knowable and unknowable. In Buddhism, you are what you think you don’t think. However, in my HUdha teachings, as the HUdha of primordial Radiant-Sound and HEART-EAR music, you, the well-trained or self-taught musician, ordinarily and unconsciously play what you are cultured or prone to play in any and every way, shape, or form of the duplicitous masks of superficial culturing, which is being Appearance Only. What is played is what one does and not who one is. In other words, you’re not what you play or what you know. So you play culture and culture plays you, unless or until you awaken beyond all such self-thinking, self-limiting, self-defining, Spirit-inhibiting cultural forms of illusion and, too often, from plain ancestral delusion.

Musicians, stop abusing your minds and misusing your ears. The material/scientific world of effects is not the true source of this music, only silence is. Plenty of room for “know nothing” Zen practice, hear? Those of you mechanical players and “creative” musicians who believe/perceive you have it all together, play and groove on. Let it rip, or rip you into your idea of bliss. Reading Heart-Blood (http://www.amazon.com/Tisziji-Mu%C3%B1oz/e/B00J8X1QN0/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1) can open some readers to what I call the treacherous walk of genius; the walk of aloneness, no friends, no fans, no family, no competition, no applause, no awards, no crutches, no excuses, no safety net, no school, no teachers, no problems, no one better, no one worse, no hesitation, just plunge into the deep and know the always here, already gone for yourself.

The are many stages with many steps on the recovery path to the Heart of one’s potential True Genius, if one can conceive of or withstand such a force or state of ecstatic liberation-reality within, for, or as oneself. Put into basic paradoxical terms, to get to this Far Out Into Here you need to learn what to unlearn.

This process, in my work, is called The Burn.

You need to play to not play or not to play to play.

You need to perform to not perform or not to perform to perform.

You need to know to not know not to know to know.

You need to be to not be or be not to be… not to be that who or what is not true for you as Soul.

You asked this basic question so you receive a friendly response heart to heart.

Furthermore, from what I call the Heart-Mind, if you can reside therein and there-as, and know its essence as love itself, then you live as a prayer, let alone play as a beginner from, or by, a mere form of prayer, for the spiritual healing, upliftment and happiness of all beings within, on and off of EARth. This is good practice and can lead to another dimension of deep-feeling music, beyond ordinary fear-based religious parameters and beliefs—just another step along the infinite universal Heart path. This leap out-into is from, about and for the advancement, thus deepening, of human-born awareness (that is, The All Hu-Man Being), which is equally born of infinite creative intelligence (beyond mere specific species of beings).

Musicians, please live from the highest of intentions, aspirations and good will. Then play from this self-transcending Heart opening inspiration regardless of what you have to play. Here, it is less about what you play and all about from where you play what you play, for whom at what level of reality. Always be grateful for your gift of music and your special gift of being able to play anything for others for their healing, education, entertainment, emotional comfort and joy. We are charged to do the very best we can in this broad, diversified, competitive and ruthless field of dreams and woes we respectfully call our beloved music: that water-soul, space-breath and spirit fire of the inner life. It is all right here-now with each of you as a Heart-First, then artist next.

Are you synesthetic? Do you see music visually within your mind’s eye when you play or listen? If so, anything special to remark about that?

If you mean seeing, hearing or knowing things as a direct result of what I hear when I am playing, my answer is, “Absolutely yes.” I don’t play just to hear myself play, or talk just to hear myself talk, or eat just to eat, or sleep just to sleep. In my case, it is much deeper and, at times, spookier than that. I enter a sound-trance; healing occurs and goes out with the music. This resonance directly affects certain people and the spirit of it seems to affect the whole space I am playing in. This is a meditative process beyond thinking, seeing, hearing, and perceiving music. I can say I am overwhelmed by the deepness of this process which, even though it happens in real time, seems to take longer to hear, as if the sound is coming up from the Earth as much as down into my body slowly, as if by time warp perception of multiple time-worlds. This is also accompanied by a sense of truth and urgency, mysteriously exuding a silent presence of wisdom, a wisdom message without words—sound wisdom, the wisdom of silent Heart-sound.

In my family I was recognized as a psychic musician, one who sees and feels the spirits, one who talks to them through this music, not by mere word. This is generally accomplished by bringing spiritual presence to the people/audience for their opening and healing. My Aunt Gracie said, “Tisziji, you are the old wise man who brings the blessings down to the people like rain from above.” She put a lot of responsibility on me.

My son, Reb, whose pitch is perfect, hears pitches in colors [synesthetic]. I see and hear by psychic emotion and feeling. I play exactly what and how I feel beyond musical sound and devices. This comes from my early life on the time-track and working through the drums for release from the world of mind and sorrow. Along with this healing arises a deep meditation on opening to seeing things not known before and knowing things before they happen. For many who come to sit with me or to hear my concerts, it is a special and often spiritual event. In many cases, people into jazz do not understand this music but say they got a healing feeling from this level of music they find incomprehensible. Many of my melodies are sweet, but where they go from there enters a healing by burn process which transcends the form, the sound and even the space the music occurs in. Some might say this is jazz, a free jazz, but it is not. There is a free jazz or out music mind and then there is the no mind, the True In Heart-music of healing by self-transcendence only.

Ordinary musical feelings, self-knowledge, and self-consciousness tend to obstruct this process of healing-transmission. Just playing what one hears and playing with undisciplined feelings and thoughts tend to obstruct this music as well. Ordinary entertaining music brings some healing, no doubt, to certain people, but falls short. Ordinary jamming doesn’t cut it. Masturbating mechanical musical chops don’t cut it. Just feeling good or high doesn’t cut it. These forms are too superficial, regardless of how loud or powerful or meaningful the experience is for the self and others. Such an effort may be a good starting point, but that’s all it is. To get beyond acrobatics, the self as B.S. has to be gone beyond, period. The psychic heartwheel has to be open beyond emotion and unconscious self-clinging/attachment. This requires an intensity of conscious penetration momentum into the spacious fire silence is, which produces Heart-radiance.

While you were in Canada, several decades back, you heard and played with guitarists Lenny Breau and Sonny Greenwich?

In 1969, I was fresh out of the 44th US Army General’s Band at Fort Bragg, North Carolina—which was my Juilliard—at 22 to 23 years of age. I was passing through Canada when Sonny Greenwich asked me, “Do you see the light?,” and I said, “No, I hear the Sound of light.” I realized then we were related as opposites. Upon hearing me blow on “Giant Steps,” he asked me to play with him. I played several times in the Greenwich Band, once as a bassist, and mostly as a drummer and beginner guitar player on some of his gigs and recordings. Greenwich, in turn, sat in with my bands during 1970 and 1971. I am very happy to have played with the Greenwich Band at Massey Hall, opposite the Miles Davis Band in 1971.

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When Lenny Breau attended one of my concerts in Toronto, afterwards he came up to me and said, “You are a genius,” which I assumed was a joke. I told him, “Lenny, in your company I already feel as bad as a baby on the guitar, you don’t have to rub it in.” Smiling, he said, “Muñoz, that’s what I mean. You don’t know where what you’re playing comes from. Man, what I heard you play didn’t come from you. It came from heaven.” Lenny knew what I was doing and what I was not doing at the beginning. He tapped into the spiritual side of my effort. After that, I held Lenny in the highest spiritual esteem, even though, for many who didn’t know him, it seemed he was living his life to the contrary. In his case the flesh was not an obstruction to Soul as clear awareness.

Besides playing a set with my band at an outdoor music festival at Toronto’s City Hall in the summer of 1971, Lenny Breau and I played a duet at the Ronnie Parks Memorial Session, in Toronto in 1971. Moe Koffman, Jim Heineman, Glen McDonald and Dougie Richardson were playing saxophones with Mike Malone on trumpet, among many other Canadian jazz artists crying through their instruments.

Tell me more about how you think about drumming?

Playing drums is experiencing a time-machine, but you need to know how to make it work. Time-machines, by nature, take you forwards, backwards, up, down, and enable you to explore the present to the left and to the right, above and below the body and even the Earth if you choose. The Earth, as a living being, time-machine, and slave, is a reference point for the forces of gravity, which reveal evidence of relative time’s control-function pervading infinite atomic space. There is a full circle, a complete cycle of creation here on Earth as in the solar system and beyond, as a revelation of a perfect beginning/ perfect ending paradox-continuum and the profound level of creativity it requires. Such is the “step up and out” progression of birth, life, death, post-death into life after death and the ultimate, on the spot, recovery of true Spirit nature.

We both fell through windows and had the arteries and the left median nerves of our left wrists severed at 5 years of age. That’s unusual to have in common. I got off easy—no lasting bad effects, just a big scar. You had partial paralysis and lasting nerve damage that has been a challenge for guitar playing in the traditional sense; I have heard this is why you, like a sax or trumpet player, generally don’t play chords and stick to single lines. Do you think not having to spend time playing chords let you see singles lines in a different way? How do you think of single lines?

Yes. Simple question, simple answer. Single lines are messages. What kind of message? It depends on the line and what it is about. Who knows for sure? The silent nature of music makes it nearly impossible to interpret its unconscious or super conscious spiritual creations.

Single lines are single lines. Therefore, single lines are not single lines. In a sense, I can’t hear a note without hearing a symphony, so to speak. I can’t hear a few notes without hearing harmonies, and I can’t hear harmonies without seeing visions of life as a cosmic rollercoaster of feelings, so in a strange way I may have a form of synesthesia. That’s why I can’t hear other people’s music. I’m too sensitive to their karma, and that makes it hard for me to listen to certain classical music, jazz or even my own music.

I am definitely handicapped (limited) and gifted (liberated) in accordance with my creative function and spiritual life mission.

In my early life, and then later on with the Krishna devotees to an ultimate level, I played drums and sang. I chanted my deepest wishes, ideas and melodies of sadness and joy. In this context, drumming represents the primordial Heartbeat engine of and for liberation of body, speech and mind. This has been my practiced realization from the earliest days of life. Singing and single lines are one. I Sing the Heart Electri-fried. I Sing the Heart-Fire Sound, loudly, compassionately and silently. Not anybody’s lines, but those that arise from this process of selfless native meditation on the sound, the inner Soul sound, not merely the “music.” Where I come from and am is the All Melody, not scales; All Feeling, not intellectual or mathematical knowledge, classical, jazz or musical structure, or mere scales of the things songs and melodies are made of, by, for, or from. I don’t have to see, hear or play audible harmonies to already hear and know them. My feelings are already known as harmonies. My thoughts are already known as melodies. I already hear melodies to any chords set before me. This point goes back to being introduced to Pharoah Sanders by Calvin Hill, at the Village Vanguard in 1974 where and when Pharoah challenged me to put a melody on a set of his changes in front of a standing room only house to open his next set. After he heard what I played on his changes, he hired me right on the spot.

Subjective accounts are all the students of music can go by. You have to believe in the beginning, until it is proven otherwise for the individual. Music is proving it to yourself. The guitar is its own voice in the mix of instruments regardless of the fact that guitar maestro Segovia said, “electric guitars are not guitars” and “rock and roll is not music,” from his classical vantage point—a voice from the pure school of the crazy ancients.

Henry, I asked you last year about your own childhood hand injury to prove a point about karma, family and friends. Our relationship is born of relatively similar tragic circumstances, disability, insanity, music and a broken-hearted need to express musical beauty to balance darkness and painful emotions by way of creative and blissful guitar playing. This links us to what I call the Broken Heart-Healed Tribe of those who earn their playing by way of blood loss and being seriously wounded at the River of Blood (family) level. My playing is not just about fun. It is about going ever deeper towards compassion, profound Heart feeling, resonant sympathy with suffering, forgiveness, letting go of suffering, and living to play about it with dignity and gratitude in the spirit of universal service to all who hear in these ways.

Having a handicap or damaged hand has been an outright joyous drag at times, like playing during the early days with cats like you, Marilyn Crispell, Paul Shaffer, Pharoah Sanders, Ravi Coltrane, Rashied Ali, Ra-Kalam Bob Moses, Don Pate, Dave Liebman, John Lockwood, Hilton Ruiz, Dr. Art Davis, Cecil McBee, McCoy Tyner, Joe Henderson, Stanley Clark, Lennie White, Elvin Jones, Nick Brignola, Bernie Senensky, and now Lam Sobo John Medeski, to name a few of the many great spirits I have had the honor to play with or lead in my bands.

I am here to spiritualize a spot in the musical field, which, in terms of excellence, requires us all to do our best to bring healing light and sound to this world now, as it prepares for up and coming transformational cataclysms. Whether one plays guitar or anything else, the Heart needs to be heard, felt, opened, expressed and given freely to others for their recovery, healing, empowerment, ensoundment and happiness.

I recorded Auspicious Healing with you, Marilyn Crispell, Mark Dresser, and Lukas Ligeti, back in March of 2000. I was surprised to find you achieved your searing and soaring guitar tone while playing your hollow-body Fender D’Aquisto in the main studio room, with your Mesa Boogie amp in an isolation room. That’s not unusual; what surprised me was the volume you had the amp set: not much louder than a clock radio at someone’s bedside. How did you come to the quiet amp thing in the studio, with the gain up and the master volume down so low? Do you still work that way in the studio?

Auspicious Healing is a great record. You needed to be with me at that recording to believe or know it for yourself. I can’t handle physical volume at certain levels. Maybe it’s hearing or weakness, ignorance or whatever—no balls? Maybe it was just the sound of my guitar at the time? I’m a soft and sweet kind of guy. The volume is not the sound. You have to feel and hear and even imagine your spirit voice properly in order to achieve the right quality of beauty, pressure/intensity and soulfulness of sound, which lifts you into its ecstatic bliss. It is a “do to die” matrix channel of create or be destroyed. There is no escaping it. Anything less hides behind a mask of mediocrity laying bare the cancer of averageness. Yikes. Just kidding.

I still love the Mesa Boogie Mark II, which I still when I am moved or need to play for a gig or a recording. I’ve received a Mesa Boogie Mark V from a dear musician/friend/Sound yoga student who felt I needed to come out of the Stone Age. It is a great amp. But I prefer the Mark II’s Stone Age balls and their krkrkrkrkshshshkrunch. My Mark II is so noisy it keeps even the worst demons away from me. The Mark II minus its severe crunch function has very workable quality sound to it. However, the Mark V’s sound is elegant, gracious and classy. Its sound scope is just vast. They are both great investments with a lot of power. I dig them. They are much more than I can handle.

You have written/said that each must become masters of their own fate; that each must awaken the Master within them. What common pitfalls do you think inhibit musicians from discovering and following such a path?

Henry, this can’t be a short one line answer. Better to be good humans first and from there be a truly great artist, or at least working on becoming somewhat of a good human being. If you prefer to be or are a sub-human and a great virtuoso, you have plenty of company in your world. You are a great artist by certain virtuoso and technical standards but can you rise as high as a great and kind human being who is also a truly great artist? Does this make sense, or is it really better to be a no good rotten piece of shit? No one is being put down here, but it is always wise to reach higher for better advancing both as a virtuoso musician and a basically good human being. Creative genius is at least as much about grace as it is disgrace.

Regardless of wherever you come from or whatever tradition you are aligned with or beholden to, the best way to not be an unnecessary burden to others is to be master of your own self, thought, mind, body, music and world. Who digs being a needy, whining, neurotic, no solutions “everything is a problem” slave? My books: The River of Blood, Divine Agreement, Moon-Vision, Transmission of Mission, Heart Blood, I Am Silence, and The Fyr of No-Music are offerings of insight for all educated, intuitive, Heart-driven musicians who are in search of steps into basic self-mastery and self-realization techniques, direction and insights for their journey to now, hereafter and beyond.

The pitfalls for musicians are the same as the pitfalls of other beings functioning outside of the grand and often heroic field of music. Ego-serving, self-building, self-indulgence at the physical, emotional, memory, mental, intellectual, creative and genius levels of functioning is a huge barrier for those on the path to liberation beyond the above mentioned dimensions and functions of normal and even extraordinary human beings. Extraordinary beings, for their own reasons, are free to ignore universal spiritual factors, realities, and religious limitations imposed on them from birth. I say why be just a Christian or a Buddhist or whatever kind of seeker for attaining elsewhere-ness? Go deeper, here-now:

Be the Christ consciousness

Be the Buddha realization of transcendence, the awakened one.

Be, and keep it real now and walk not the path of regrets.

Imitation, beyond a point, is a big curse and a dark alley, an easy way into self-defeating shallow waters. Beware of such a demon friend. Learn all you need to learn, but translate, if you can, your own emotions and experiences into your music as lyric, melody, harmony and rhythm, and may its brightness be with you and even brighter in days ahead of you.

How much mastery is one willing to assume, to produce such or any great results? How pure a person or individual is one willing to be in order to best help or serve humanity by way of their creating music, beauty, song, dance, theater, writing, poetry, painting, loving, healing, designing, inventing, revealing or teaching whatever needs to be taught or demonstrated for the enlightenment-creation and liberation of other beings here, there and everywhere? Could some be nowhere and get this all done as well? Why not?

If a musician or guitar player was going to read one of your books about music, what would be a good place to start and why?

I would recommend The Bhagavad Guitar Player, The Transmission of Mission, The Fyr of No-Music, and/or Heart Blood as a first step to going deeper into what genius, as free, intelligent, awakened creativity, is or could be. These books are great stepping stones to the infinite.

I like the titles of a recent series of albums that you released recently with John Medeski on piano: Beauty As Beauty, Beauty As Ugly, Ugly As Ugliest. Tell us some things about beauty and ugliness and music?

Henry, what many beings, including musicians, need is balance. One goes to therapy for some sense of balance and thus the ability to do those things we most deeply want and need to do without our self-mechanisms, past karma and obvious complications we reinforce and create for ourselves to get in the way of creativity producing, self-transcending, Heart-opened balance. One plays music for balance, while another has sex or does yoga for balance.

John Medeski (Lam Sobo) approached me in 2008 expressing his need to play and study with me. I needed a pianist and Lam Sobo is a very fine one who, needing some spiritual/musical balance, agreed we should play. I came up with the idea of recording some music to use for his study of what I play, how I play it, and let it happen. I decided on a trilogy (triangle) presented as three creative steps to the fullness of here-now. The classical or melodic step in the form of Beauty As Beauty; the jazz step in the form of Beauty As Ugliness—taking a simple melody and opening it up to its extensions, its implications and inner logic beyond itself as form: and the transcendent or top step into the universal wisdom-mind from which all relative forms and structures arise and disappear into the true No-One matrix of creative beingness itself, the Ugly As Ugliest as the most unconventional, incomprehensible and undesirable form of all: Talking The Guitar. This proved to be a wise approach for us to demonstrate my point and vision in a way that educates and illuminates the process for others.

On one of your live albums, when introducing the band, for  yourself you say, “No Guitar, No Guitar On Stage Tonight.

Precisely. No Guitar player here tonight or today. I am the No Guitar Player, Henry. What was really present wasn’t just a guitar or a bass or the drums. Beyond all instruments is the presence of the Heart, the always here and now of True Heart Love. I was and still am, in my heart-mind, a drummer who drums out Heart-melodies through the guitar. Ask the drummers I know about this fact. I teach drummers how to play this Anami Music of Heart-Fire Sound. It is a form of Sound-yoga. In life, on and off the stage, we need to know what to completely get rid of now in order to stand Free and Wild as the wind and Fire are. Not just for a random sighting or hearing of it, but knowing this radical Freedom as the Is Real always Is.

I know that you don’t think of yourself as a guitarist in the sense that most folks who read guitar magazines think of themselves as guitarists.

Thinking “I am a guitar player” is great. It is a rare gift to play the guitar with two good hands, which I don’t exactly have. But these one and three quarters hands, with and without nerve pain, arthritis and whatever, are relatively adequate for what I have done or have yet to do with them. Use what you’ve got and be totally grateful for the little you may have left, and from and through that offer your good heart and song, your good mind and jazz to others.

Am I correct in assuming that, like me, you don’t really pick up the guitar much unless you are performing live or recording in the studio? Has it always been that way for you and why?

I often have musicians staying with me and in every case they are astonished as to how little I listen to music or play it. Weeks and months can go by and nada, zero. Of course, the topics and processes of music and spiritual creativity continually arise. Unless I have a gig of course, then I need a coat of callouses on my finger tips to protect my nerves. A couple of hours of prepping the tips are useful and necessary.

The world is slowly becoming aware of my conversations among a slightly expanding circle of knowledgeable, gracious and gifted friends and visitors. Some of our interactions are now being made public for all to see and hear as needed. Now that I have gotten a certain amount of my intended work done, I am somewhat more open to possibilities offered now but ignored in the past, due to an urgent need to serve certain beings in quite specific individual ways.

Tell us a quick and illuminating story about music?

Music lived and performed freely, creatively from the Heart is Divinity Realized. Don’t forget this.

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10 thoughts on “Pioneer: Tisziji Muñoz

  1. I have known Tisziji for over 50 years. We met in Brooklyn when he was 16 and I was 15. We married and had three children and evolved together over the years. I can attest to his music as a pure, spontaneous expression, true and free. His music taught me to dance. We are no longer married, but we are deep dharma friends. In fact, one of the great things about Tisziji is his ability to be a true friend, father and teacher without imposing a cultic demand on anyone. Thanks for your insight in this article and interview. Tisziji may never be well known, and that’s probably how it should be because he will never sell out for commercial gain. He can only be himself. Anyone who discovers him and lends an ear, may find him a healing presence musically and spiritually.

  2. The more I am exposed to Tisziji in his music and his writings the more amazed and spellbound I become. I resonate with his Spirit and experience liberation and truth as his gifts to me and the Universe! It’s all here now in it’s presence. The deepest and most sincere Heartfelt gratitude for these gifts!!! Huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu!!!!!!!!!

  3. Thanks for this interview. I’ve know Tisziji since 2004, 10 years now. In that time he’s been absolutely 100% consistently positive, wise, generous, focused, humorous and always ready to discuss and confront the deepest issues facing us as humans and conscious beings in general.

    I’ve spent time at his place and it’s true, he doesn’t listen to music, he lives music and harmony. He didn’t know me at all, but knew I was genuinely interested in learning (music and meditation) and invited me to visit his place, housed and fed me for a week, didn’t ask for anything in return.

    Although known as a “guru” he isn’t manipulative or self-serving, he’s always making sure the student has their own legs to stand on, not growing dependent on him but gaining traction in their own natural process of connecting with the universe as a whole..

    So yeah, he’s the real deal. Super cool guy, deep cosmic guru, master musician and tireless advocate for radical freedom.

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