Wild Yoga

yoga and thought from Theo Wildcroft

Music and movement

Angie45When I do my physical practice, the relationship between the two fundamental rhythms of breath and heart set the pace. But I love music, and love the way music can take me into a different place – a different way of moving with my body. And at times, my ‘yoga’ practice has more in common with the free movement of dance.

Over the years, I’ve danced with skilled teachers such as Dawn Morgan and Sue Kuhn, Anjali Kaur and Hari Pyari, who use the pace and feel of music to take a group on a journey through ways of moving. All are influenced by the remarkable work of Gabrielle Roth, who sadly died last year. Her ‘5 rhythms’ of flowing, staccato, chaos, lyrical, and stillness, have flowered into the many different forms of ecstatic dance practice we enjoy today.

So the playlists I use are carefully chosen, evolving over the years of my personal practice and my teaching. And different aims makes for very different playlists. When I discovered 8tracks.com, it became so much easier to share those playlists with others. You can listen to my 8tracks playlists even if you don’t own the music yourself – it’s like internet radio with each user being a DJ. It does mean there are restrictions on what can be uploaded, and what you can do as you’re listening – you can’t skip a lot of tracks, for example. And if you want to know what the full playlist is, you have to make a note as you go.

For your interest and personal joy today, I wanted to share some of those playlists here, and how I make them. You’ll also see who my favourite musicians are – which are the albums or tracks I use again and again. They come in three kinds – music for teaching general yoga, music for specific teaching purposes, and music for home practice. If you already follow me on 8tracks, you might not have noticed that I uploaded 5 new playlists this week for home practice – as my gift to you. Finally, I wouldn’t even know about half of this music if it wasn’t for Phil, who casts an eye over each one when it’s done, with helpful suggestions born of a lifetime’s love of music.

1: Music for General Teaching

Playlists here are about 90 minutes long, and build from a gentle beginning to more rousing pieces, down to relaxation tracks at the end. There are few recognisable beats, dramatic changes in tone or obvious lyrics, because the music has to adapt to whatever I am teaching and how the class feels on a given day. But there are themes – each playlist is chosen to be appropriate for a different ‘term’ or time of year.

Spring

  • Gaayatri by Ravi Shankar
  • First Rain by Lush
  • Escobar by Graham Camp
  • Devi Puja by Baird Hersey & Prana with Krishna Das
  • The Valley Of The Moon by Lisa Gerrard
  • Shivoham by Manish Vyas
  • Aham by Hari Pyari and the Natural Mystics
  • En-trance by Biosphere
  • thanks for glistening by alucidnation
  • The Great Peace Part 1 by Rafael Szaban
  • Embrace me by Seize The Day

Easter

  • Entering The Sacred by Jonathan Goldman
  • Hey Mata Durga by Krishna Das
  • Datar / B by Datar
  • Om Mata Kali by Shantala
  • Mumbai Theme Tune by A. R. Rahman
  • Come Tenderness by Lisa Gerrard
  • Jai Ananda Maya Ma Jai Amma by Narayani and Jason Kalidas
  • Sister Sister by Sister Bliss
  • Durge Durge by Hari Pyari and the Natural Mystics
  • Jai Ma by Wah!
  • In Orbit by Dreams of Dying Stars
  • Departing the Sacred by Jonathan Goldman
  • Dawn Chorus by Lush
  • Om Shanti by Bliss

Summer

  • Prologue by Kate Bush
  • Mana Part 1 by Siva Pacifica
  • Souka Nayo by Baaba Maal
  • Lord, Keep Me Shining by Jai Uttal
  • Sri Argala Stotram / Show Me Love by Krishna Das
  • Flume by Peter Gabriel
  • This Love by Bliss
  • Shivoham by Craig Pruess
  • Spaceweaver by Lisa Gerrard
  • The Great Western by Lush
  • En-trance by Biosphere
  • The Journey by Denise Leicester and Tabla Tom Simenauer
  • Closing Prayers by Hari Pyari and the Natural Mystics

Autumn

  • Song For The Salmon by David Whyte
  • Entering The Sacred by Jonathan Goldman
  • Wandering Star by Lisa Gerrard
  • Devi Puja by Baird Hersey & Prana with Krishna Das
  • Wayfaring Stranger by Jamie Woon
  • Return Journey by Quietman
  • Scarborough Fair by Lush
  • Sahanaa Vavatu by Ravi Shankar
  • Longing by Ty Burhow
  • Carry me home by Seize The Day
  • First Rain by Lush
  • Anthem by Leonard Cohen
  • Here Comes The Flood by Peter Gabriel
  • Lightfall by Ian Boddy
  • The Journey by Denise Leicester and Tabla Tom Simenauer
  • An Ending (Ascent) by Brian Eno

Winter

  • Autumn Leaves by Coldcut
  • Serenity by Lisa Gerrard
  • Galaxia by Moonman
  • Anthem by Leonard Cohen
  • The Nest That Sailed The Sky by Peter Gabriel
  • Song to the Siren by This Mortal Coil
  • Shiva Manas Puja by Craig Pruess
  • Mala by Ty Burhow
  • Goddess Prayer by Krishna Das
  • Loka Samastah by Tim Chalice
  • Be Here Now by Ray LaMontagne
  • Om Mani Padme Hum by Wah!
  • Menla Mantra Part II by Jonathan Goldman

New Year

  • Opening Prayers by Hari Pyari and the Natural Mystics
  • Peace Love & Harmonium by Lush
  • Let’s Go Out Tonight by Craig Armstrong
  • Be Here Now by Ray LaMontagne
  • The Sea Whisperer by Lisa Gerrard
  • Gayatri Mantra by Denise Leicester and Tabla Tom Simenauer
  • Shiv Shakti by Bliss
  • Akhanda Prayer by Ragani
  • Blind Visions by Accadia
  • The Great Peace Part 2 by Rafael Szaban

2: Music for a Specific Purpose

I have three playlists here. One is a little stimulating but gentle, for when I’m working with children with special needs who might enjoy being energised and uplifted. This is a great playlist for anyone who’s being kind to themselves today. The second playlist is very gentle and calming – mostly rolling ‘oms’ – for children with behavioural or emotional challenges. Because children like this tend to spend much of their day around other children in a similar state, I try to make my time with them as calm and spacious as possible. This is a great playlist for rest and renewal. Finally, there’s a playlist for the new ‘Wild Yoga Experiment’ – this one is more of a journey, being 2 hours long. It takes us from led movement to free movement to prayer and coming together.

Special Yoga – Smile

  • Mumbai Theme Tune by A. R. Rahman
  • Blind Visions by Accadia
  • Souka Nayo by Baaba Maal
  • The Valley Of The Moon by Lisa Gerrard
  • Be Here Now by Ray LaMontagne
  • Café Del mar by Energy 52
  • Saltwater by Chicane
  • Love Movement by Justine Robertson and Revtone
  • Downside-Up by Peter Gabriel
  • i’m not bad by alucidnation
  • Let’s Go Out Tonight by Craig Armstrong
  • Om Shanti by Bliss
  • The Star Studded Plough by Lush
  • First Rain by Lush
  • Make Tomorrow by Peter Gabriel
  • Gayatri Mantra by Deva Premal
  • My Weakness by Moby

Special Yoga – Chill

  • Last Light by Lush
  • The Nest That Sailed The Sky by Peter Gabriel
  • The Sea Whisperer by Lisa Gerrard
  • Be Still Part 1 by Rafael Szaban
  • Shanti Mantra by Denise Leicester and Tabla Tom Simenauer
  • The Great Peace Part 1 by Rafael Szaban
  • Gayatri Mantra by Denise Leicester and Tabla Tom Simenauer
  • Departing the Sacred by Jonathan Goldman
  • The Night Vigil by Lush

WildYoga

  • Chakra Healing Bija Syllables by Denise Leicester and Tabla Tom Simenauer
  • Event Horizon by Quietman
  • 14:31 by Global Communication
  • Galaxia by Moonman
  • Smokebelch II by The Sabres of Paradise
  • Return Journey by Quietman
  • Blind Visions by Accadia
  • My Weakness by Moby
  • Journey to Samadhi by cryosleep
  • The Great Peace Part 1 by Rafael Szaban
  • Jaan by Talvin Singh
  • Baba Hanuman by Krishna Das

3: Music for Home Practice

These are my most recent ones. They have a lot more to interact with than the other playlists. There’s one for each of the five yogic elements, as a way of changing the musical support to my practice depending on the dynamic of the day – how I’m feeling and how I want to feel, or where I am and where I want to be. Earth is strong and steady. Water just flows. Fire is spiky and bouncy and unexpected. Air is lightly lyrical. Akasha is spacious and full of stillness.

Earth

  • Gaayatri by Ravi Shankar
  • Dunya Salam by 1 Giant Leap
  • Devi Puja by Baird Hersey & Prana with Krishna Das
  • She Moved Through The Fair by Emma And The Professor
  • Rise by Craig Armstrong
  • Amba Bhavani by Bhavana
  • Shiv Shakti by Bliss
  • Ship in distress by Seize The Day
  • Return Journey by Quietman
  • Primal Ground – Base Chakra by Jonathan Goldman

Water

  • Opening Prayers by Hari Pyari and the Natural Mystics
  • Song For The Salmon by David Whyte
  • First Rain by Lush
  • Song to the Siren by This Mortal Coil
  • 1 by Ally Starchild
  • Flower of the Mountain (Originally Titled the Sensual World) by Kate Bush
  • Here Comes The Flood by Peter Gabriel
  • Sea Of Vapours by Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan
  • Sacred Union – Sacral Chakra by Jonathan Goldman
  • Empty Water by Lisa Gerrard

Fire

  • Omkaaraaya Namaha by Ravi Shankar
  • Lily by Kate Bush
  • The Way You Dream by 1 Giant Leap
  • Fireside by Arctic Monkeys
  • The Red Shoes by Kate Bush
  • Firewater by BT
  • Fire Wire by Cosmic Gate
  • Man On Fire by Harry Gregson Williams feat Lisa Gerrard
  • Solar Fires – Navel Chakra by Jonathan Goldman
  • Journey To The Sun by Adham Shaikh

Air

  • Song of Sophia by Dead Can Dance
  • Dawn Chorus by Lush
  • Aerial Tal by Kate Bush
  • Reaching Out by Kate Bush
  • All Is Full of Love by Björk
  • Into The Dawn by Accadia
  • The Mello Hippo Disco Show by The Future Sound of London
  • Will You Wait Here by Long-view
  • Low Light by Peter Gabriel
  • This Love by Craig Armstrong
  • Blue by Sarah McLachlan
  • Cantus in memory of Benjamin Britten by Arvo Pärt
  • Wings of the Heart – Heart Chakra by Jonathan Goldman

Akasha

  • Closing Prayers by Hari Pyari and the Natural Mystics
  • The song of the Sibyl by Dead Can Dance
  • Kalimankou Denkou by The Bulgarian State Radio & Television Female Choir
  • Ghosts by 1 Giant Leap
  • This Womans Work by Kate Bush
  • Hymn by Craig Armstrong
  • Pale Green Angel by Bliss
  • Wayfaring Stranger by Jamie Woon
  • Anthem by Leonard Cohen
  • Crown of Creation – Crown Chakra by Jonathan Goldman
  • Celestial Body by Quietman