"As you swim up and down the river, enjoy the freestyle because what you do affects everyone around you." -Glenn Schloss
When I moved to Nyack 6 years ago, I heard people often ask, "Why doesn't Nyack have a drum circle?" Sure, there were a few local circles in the past, but the question and conversations continued.
For a long time, I've made it a practice to play each morning before all the hustle and bustle of life begins. It reenergizes me and allows me to express myself before all the chaos kicks in.
But one morning I thought, "Could I do this for more than just myself?" I knew I could, but who would listen? Who would show up? Who would jump in?
We have two choices; Embrace the unknown with open arms or choose to shut down when it feels uncomfortable.
I chose to embrace the drum circle and bring it back to Nyack hoping others would embrace it too.
First, I created the drum circle For Vibration up at my house as a monthly celebration. My wife and I left the front door wide open and encouraged people to dive in with us. Our mission was for people to uplift and awaken their mind, body, spirit and groove. The idea was communication through rhythm without ANY vocalized conversation.
Somewhat by accident and somewhat by sheer design, we created a brand new kind of drum circle.
And the experience left me forever changed.
I learned that,
I love to play.
I love to share my love to play.
I love to watch people join me who also love to play.
I love to watch people who didn't realize they could play, START to play.
Within a few months, For Vibration outgrew our home and I challenged myself to explore it and go further.
For 21 days , I played the djembe at 7:30am on Main Street in downtown Nyack. I called it The Rhythm Social Experiment, hoping to bring people together who knowingly or unknowingly, wanted to energize their day with positive rhythm.
After 21 days, people inspired by the rhythm social experiment asked me, "Where do we go from here Glenn?"
I responded by moving For Vibration to Memorial Park every Sunday morning at 10AM.
For the next 4 weeks, we played, celebrated and responded to rhythm in a way I have never experienced. Old friends, new friends, couples, singles, babies, parents and strangers united together in memorial park celebrating mind, body, spirit and groove. It was beyond a drum circle. It was beyond simple patterns and beats. It was truly epic. People vibrating on a deeper level as a community.
Unfortunately, on December 8th, as we gathered for our weekly event, For Vibration was shut down by the Police. It was a peaceful shutdown. We had to cease playing as we had no official permit and there were people in the surrounding area not happy with us.
But, I believe that the glass is half full, if not completely full.
For two months, we shook things up in a positive, soulful way and I think Nyack was better for the experience. People played their rhythms and looked each other in the eye.
They responded and respected one another through the silence and the chaos of the all mighty groove. (Without any I phone or android distraction.)
So, I can say with confidence that For Vibration is just beginning.
Although we were shut down in memorial park, For Vibration continues to embrace the unknown.
I celebrate and honor all of the people who came out to the house, on Main Street and to Memorial Park every Sunday to take part in For Vibration, The Rhythm Social Experiment.
To all the people who came out and said, "YES! I want to groove and express myself, and I will come out and play, even in the frigid cold." It is because of YOU, that my fire is lit up and makes me want to play even more and reach for the stars.
Thank you to the great town of Nyack. There is a certain smell, a certain taste in the community that is calling out for self expression and artistry. We all feel it.
Please stay tuned as For Vibration, The Rhythm Social Experiment embraces another challenge in 2014.
Remember, the rhythm is within all of us.
Peace Love & Magic.