July 2020 - Stephen Hamm

The July 2020 episode of the Theremin 30 podcast features music from Peru, Colombia, Australia, and Italy. Rick Reid's interview guest is Stephen Hamm "The Theremin Man."


"Voraz" - Kozmik Cafe (Lima, Peru)
"Children of London" - AmaNRouge (Bogota, Colombia)
"Speaking in Tongues" - Miles Brown (Melbourne, Victoria, Australia)
"Atmospheres for Empty Cities" - Unreal Project (Teramo, Italy)

*The full-length recordings featured in this show were used with the knowledge and permission of the artists and composers. Please support the artists by visiting their websites, purchasing their recordings, and attending their performances.


"Opera Glasses" - Phlogiston Theory (Rick Reid) (Denver, CO, USA) and Ron Allen (Seattle, WA, USA)
"Time Shadows" - Phlogiston Theory (Rick Reid) (Denver, CO, USA)
"No Static at All" - Phlogiston Theory (Rick Reid) (Denver, CO, USA)


Stephen Hamm "The Theremin Man" is hosting Sunday night theremin meditation sessions on Facebook and YouTube.


Visit the Theremin 30 Calendar of Theremin Events for links and details of events mentioned in this episode.


The Theremin 30 Playlist on YouTube includes music videos and concert performances of songs featured in this podcast.



Copyright 2020 Rick Reid



Please note: This is a machine-generated transcript that has not been manually edited. There will be numerous errors. Check back soon for a corrected version.

David Brower  0:04  
This is there have been 3030 minutes of pheromones, news, news events and interviews with a new episode about every 30 days. Now, here's your host from Denver, Colorado, USA, Rick Reid.

Rick Reid  0:18  
Well, hello, welcome to Theremin 30 the world's only monthly Theremin podcast as far as I know, with most of the planet Earth under some sort of pandemic lockdown right now. I hope that Theremin 30 podcast is helping you to discover some new music and to stay connected with the larger Theremin family. On this episode, I have new music from Australia, Colombia, Peru and Italy. And my interview guest is Canadian thereminist Stephen ham. He'll tell us about the Theremin meditation sessions. He has been video streaming from his home in Vancouver BC. Let's get started now with a couple of tracks from South America beginning with the current single from Lima, Peru bass duo cosmic cafe featuring veronik on Theremin and vocals and Dante Gonzalez on synths and drum machines. This track is called the voraus which Google tells me translates to English as a voracious.

Rick Reid  8:51  
we began the show with forez by cosmic cafe. That song came out in April of this year and they just released remixed and extended versions a few weeks ago. You can get them on Bandcamp after that, we heard a brand new single called children of London by Bogota, Colombia based recording artists on Mon rouge if features if they're Imogen, Theremin, and one Alejandro Ramos on violin. To learn more about cosmic cafe and Amman Rouge. Click on their names and this month show notes at Theremin thirty.com. Coming up after the break, we'll take a look at the calendar of Theremin events and l spin the current single from Australian thereminist Miles Brown. So stay tuned.

Rick Reid  9:44  
Now it's time to take a look at the Theremin 13 calendar of Theremin events. On July 12, the eclectic electrics festival was streaming pre recorded performance by door at Chrysler. On July 15, Dr. G will livestream his Science Time with Dr. g. Educational concert for kids. On July 18, Beethoven will be performing live at Lew Hall in Wakayama, Japan. Also on the 18th. The avant garde a duo 16 millimeter will perform in Boone Laval park in Santiago, Spain. On the 25th pamelia, Stickney will be performing live in Vienna, Austria, with a simultaneous stream on the web. And over the last four days of July, Peter Theremin will be teaching an online masterclass. Of course, August is the birth month of Leon Theremin. So if you're planning an event in his honor, be sure to send me the details and I'll add it to the calendar. You can check out the calendar anytime by going to calendar dot Theremin thirty.com.

Rick Reid  10:52  
Up next, it's the first Australian recording artists to be featured on the Theremin 30 podcast. Myles brown records both as a solo artist and with his band called The night terrors. He has studied Theremin technique with both Lydia cabina and Karolina Ike. His current solo album is called the gateway and this track is titled speaking in tongues.

Rick Reid  17:15  
That was speaking in tongues by miles brown from his current album The Gateway, he recently produced a really cool music video for that track and I've added it to the Theremin 30 playlist on YouTube, so be sure to take a look. Up next we'll mellow things out a bit and learn about Theremin meditation with my interview guests Stephen ham. So stay tuned.

Rick Reid  18:08  
Stephen ham the Theremin man recently launched a weekly video streaming series of Theremin music meditation sessions. He was kind enough to discuss this very timely stress reducing project with me a few days ago from his home in Vancouver, British Columbia. Stephen ham, thank you so much for being part of the Theremin 30 podcast.

Stephen Hamm  18:28  
Thanks for having me, Rick,

Rick Reid  18:30  
a lot of musicians because of the pandemic don't have many opportunities to perform for an audience. But you found an interesting way around that

Stephen Hamm  18:37  
I have every Sunday night at 8pm pacific time I have been doing a half hour Theremin meditation I call it which is basically me improvising on the theramin to pre recorded backing tracks and helping people to hopefully relax and have a chill Sunday evening in these rather stressful times.

Rick Reid  19:01  
The word meditation brings up thoughts about religion and spirituality is that part of what you're doing?

Stephen Hamm  19:06  
One friend of mine told me years ago that and we were having some drinks at the time he said when you start to get a little bit older, you either have to have kids, or you have to find Buddhism. And he had kids and I didn't. So I don't know if I became a Buddhist I consider myself an armchair Buddhist. But definitely I think that as we progress through this life, our minds can become more and more cluttered. And so you need to get into some sort of practice to maintain some Saturday or some direction. I've practiced meditation for the last 15 years. And I've found it to be really helpful in calming my nervous system, helping me respond better to the world at large. It's not really a spiritual practice. For me it is to a point obviously I consider myself a spiritual being and that ties in to why I was attracted to the Theremin in the first place, because there's definitely something otherworldly about the Theremin. And combining the Theremin along with meditation seemed like a no brainer to me. I know other people have done it in the past. But when the pandemic hit, this is where I was led to. So that's what I've been doing for the last three months every Sunday night on Facebook, and starting this week, I am going to do it on YouTube as well.

Rick Reid  20:27  
When I've done meditation, I've mostly done the type where you just focus on your breathing. How does meditation with music change the whole meditation process?

Stephen Hamm  20:36  
I have also done mindfulness are watching the breath meditation. For me as the performer doing meditation on the Theremin, I find that I get into a place of flow. Music has always done that for me. So by doing a 10 minute improvisation, that's usually fairly in one key, it's a droning thing, I find it helps me to block out all thoughts that clutter my mind. And I hope that is happening for the listener as well.

Rick Reid  21:08  
How does meditating as a group activity figure into what you're doing?

Stephen Hamm  21:12  
This has always been something that's been in the back of my head to do something like this, because I usually do a show that involves a Theremin. And it's a live presentation. And I had a whole bunch of shows booked before the pandemic and all sudden, they all started to get canceled. And as we started to go into lockdown, I was like, how do I keep playing? How do I keep my skills sharp? How do I maybe brings Relief to People I have had people comment on the meditations during the performances and leave messages with me afterwards. And they tell me that they seem to help that people are starting to look forward to my Sunday night meditations. But it helps them ground that it gives them a little break before they start yet another stressful week.

Rick Reid  21:59  
You're in Vancouver, Canada, are you locked up alone in your home there or other people there with you while you're streaming your show?

Stephen Hamm  22:08  
I live in a what I call the celestial grotto here in Vancouver, which is a one bedroom apartment. I live by myself. I do work outside of the home still. But I have something I have a touchstone every Sunday night where I can come and do my performance. And I go through a whole process getting ready, I set up the lights, I set up the audio. I do a quick little meditation myself, you know, like any performer, you'd have a routine where you prepare for performance. And this is a whole new thing for me doing it with no instantaneous feedback like you get when you play in a live situation. So it's been interesting and really rewarding as well.

Rick Reid  22:48  
Do you know where some of your viewers are located around the world,

Stephen Hamm  22:51  
it's mostly seems to be local folks. Although I have people in Toronto, I've had people from New York and a couple of Europeans as well. People do like the idea that they're other people around the North American continent all sitting down and one friend of mine said, you know, all I do is I lay down on the floor and I close my eyes and I just relax and I listened to you. I had another woman last week send a video of her cat sitting on the window sill of her apartment while they listened to the meditation and the cat's ears were picked up and responding to the sounds of the Theremin. So that was really great. I mean, I think it's a bit of an interspecies meditation.

Stephen Hamm  23:34  
I think there is a certain something about people knowing that they're isolated with their families or by themselves in their apartments or their homes. But we're all together at the same time. You know, and people do chat a bit on Facebook. So it's a way to bring people together, which is why I play music in the first place. So and I also still want to have fun you know, I think that's very important. Especially times like now and we're looking at you know, maybe the collapse of the entertainment industry or live in news I mean, when's it going to go back to normal so these are all things that are forefront and a lot of my friends minds and can be something for myself that I can get wrapped up and really think there's no way out of this predicament we're in today. But I if I just focus on, you know what I can do and how I can I can help people have fun. You know, it's important to me It always has been I think people have fun watching my performance. I had a friend tell me that why he watches he watches to see when I screw up because that's for him. That's the most entertaining and see how

Rick Reid  24:41  
some friend you've got.

Stephen Hamm  24:45  
So yeah, I definitely have a sense of humor about everything I do, I think one has to

Rick Reid  24:49  
and finally remind us again how people can find it and participate in your Theremin meditation program.

Stephen Hamm  24:55  
You can go to Theremin man.com which is my website. Also Stephen ham.ca they both lead you to my website. That's te ph n. Ham, h A m m there's two AMS and magic as I like to say that has links to the my Facebook page there. You can also go to Stephen ham Theremin man on Facebook on the live page there my meditations are available to view and that's every Sunday night at 8pm pacific standard time on Facebook and YouTube Stephen ham Theremin then

Rick Reid  25:30  
to learn more about Stephen Hammond is Theremin meditation project to click on the link in this month's show notes.

Rick Reid  25:42  
To wrap up this episode now let's hear the evocative and darkly cinematic music of the Unreal project from Toronto, Italy. This track is called atmospheres for empty cities.

Rick Reid  29:16  
It looks like the sand is about to run out of my half hour glass and I want to thank cosmic cafe I'm on rouge Miles Brown and Unreal project kindly allowing me to play their music in the show. I also want to thank Stephen ham for being my interview guests telling us all about the room in meditation. If you have Theremin music you'd like me to play in the show contact me through the Theremin 30 website or the Facebook page. Until next time, I'm your host Rick Reid. Remember to wear a mask in public and try to keep other people out of your control zone.

David Brower  29:50  
You've been listening to the Theremin 30 podcast visit Theremin 30 on the web at Theremin threezero.com