Todd Tamanend Clark | Dancing Through the Side Worlds

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Dancing Through the Side Worlds

by Todd Tamanend Clark

Double disc set of psychedelic cyberpunk with darkly poetic Native American themes and a jazz fusion edge!
Genre: Rock: Psychedelic
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Black Ashes
7:44 $0.99
2. We Can't Breathe
7:39 $0.99
3. Birthright Blues
9:19 $0.99
4. Childhood Shadows
5:28 $0.99
5. I Listen to the Owls
8:47 $0.99
6. Talons of the Raptor
13:25 $0.99
7. The Death of Price (The Price of Death)
6:12 $0.99
8. Woodland Summer
5:06 $0.99
9. Surrealistic San Francisco
6:45 $0.99
10. We Hold the Rock
6:14 $0.99
11. Marriage At Midnight
6:10 $0.99
12. First Nations First
6:36 $0.99
13. Rise Up Dancing
8:24 $0.99
14. Animal Contact
6:59 $0.99
15. Among the Manitous
14:39 $0.99
16. Shapeshifting the Monongahela Night
18:07 $0.99
17. Why the Earth Eats the Dead
7:12 $0.99
18. Dark Matter / Dark Energy
9:08 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes

Todd Tamanend Clark was born on August 10, 1952 in Greensboro, Pennsylvania. He was raised in the home of his maternal grandparents: Price Harvey (1883-1968) and Mona Gabler (1895-1962). Price taught him the culture of the Onodowaga and a love for poetry, and Mona passed on her considerable keyboard talent, her keen sense of social justice, and her incredible culinary skills. After the deaths of Mona and Price, Clark lived full-time with his Lenape father and graduated from Waynesburg-Central High School in 1970.

Clark is an accomplished avant-garde composer whose first recording was released in 1975. He is a versatile multi-instrumentalist who plays synthesizer, sampler, theremin, vocoder, electric guitar, native flute, ocarina, and both electronic and acoustic percussion, as well as vocalizing in a deep and expressive Morrisonian baritone. His six children participate in many of his projects, including keyboardist X Tecumseh Clark and guitarist Sachem Orenda Clark, who have solo careers as well. Previous collaborators include Cheetah Chrome, Chuck Moses, Cornsmoke, Crystal Castles, Dorothy Moskowitz, Iggy Pop, Pere Ubu, The Residents, and William Burroughs. Clark's older vinyl releases of psychedelic proto-industrial rock from the 1970s and 1980s are highly sought after gems at collectible record conventions, often commanding up to several hundred dollars per copy.

Clark has been obsessed with electronic music ever since first hearing theremins and oscillators in 1950s science-fiction films during his childhood and finally decided on a career in the field after seeing Micky Dolenz play an analog modular Moog synthesizer on The Monkees television show in January of 1968. Then in March of that same year, Joseph Byrd and Dorothy Moskowitz released their groundbreaking United States Of America album, and Clark's future was sealed.

Clark first went to college in San Francisco (where he participated in the Native American occupation of Alcatraz) and then later finished with a Bachelor Of Arts degree in Communication at Slippery Rock University. He went on to graduate school at Indiana University.

Clark is the multiply divorced father of one daughter: Lyric Winona Clark (1976), and five sons: Neolin Chaska Clark (1977), X Tecumseh Clark (1984), Shaman Manitou Clark (1986), Sachem Orenda Clark (1988), and Draven Nemacolin Clark (2000). He has four grandchildren.

Clark is the author of four books of poetry including the forthcoming Dark Thunder and is also a long-time activist with the American Indian Movement and various other indigenous organizations. He currently resides in rural Fayette County, Pennsylvania, near his beloved Monongahela River, where he practices his indigenous spirituality.

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All songs on this album were composed by Todd Tamanend Clark and recorded between May 2013 and November 2014 at Silent Wing Audio in Bobtown, Pennsylvania. All the many diverse electronic instruments and Native American acoustic instruments were played by Todd Tamanend Clark, as was the lead guitar on eight of the songs. Fifteen session musicians and vocalists augmented various songs. The front cover painting is by Steven Johnson Leyba.

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1.01. BLACK ASHES (7:45)

"Black ashes -- villages in ruin where we dreamed so hard!
Black ashes -- desolate nightmare under the stars!
Black ashes -- silent insight into ancestral scars!
Black ashes -- some dotted with pottery shards!"

The opening song begins to set the mournful scene of the state of Native America through archaeological evidence.

1.02. WE CAN'T BREATHE (7:41)

"We can't breathe
When we're forbidden the expressiveness of our languages;
We can't breathe
When we're shackled by the manacles of the iron alphabet.
We can't breathe
When we're crushed inside the insect swarm;
We can't breathe
When they cause our children irreparable harm."

The second song continues outlining the dire straits of Native America through sociological conditions. Although the song was written in 1994, it possesses an eerie synchronicity with current events in 2014.


"Vultures carved circles on the August morning I was born;
The scalpel gleamed with blood as my mother's flesh was torn."

"Birthright Blues" is a sinister minor key blues number with an unexpected neo-classical bridge and a cool organ tag chronicling the story of Todd Tamanend Clark's conception, embryonic journey, and cesarean birth. Michael Dohanich excels on multiple electric guitar tracks. When was the last time you heard a theremin and/or a Moog synthesizer solo on a blues song?


"There's amazing anguish
Exploring Greensboro,
With reflections in the river
In my childhood shadows."

The 1950s childhood of Todd Tamanend Clark is spent in the home of his maternal grandparents due to his mother's severe epilepsy. "Childhood Shadows" is a unique blend of cyberpunk and rockabilly with sizzling saxophone by Robert Myers.

1.05. I LISTEN TO THE OWLS (8:45)

"Owls are my allies, and they bring
Good fortune on the hunt."

From a very young age, Todd Tamanend Clark knew every forest, hill, stream, and river in the Greensboro, Pennsylvania area. He was a skilled archer, and at night, he listened to the language of the owls. The production on this song is in tribute to Phil Spector and the poetry is in tribute to Allen Ginsberg.

1.06. TALONS OF THE RAPTOR (13:22)

"I merge with the minds of my allies!
To the Onodowaga, I am Ohohwa, messenger of change.
I carry communication from extra-dimensional domains.
To the Lenape, I am Gokhos -- I see secrets in the night;
To the Maya, I am part of a parliament surrounding their death god.
To the Seminole, I am a sinister shapeshifter.
My asymmetrical ear holes produce a three-dimensional auditory map.
My translucent third eyelid protects my visionary functions."

The forest is a balanced ecosystem that includes carnivores. (It ain't Bambi, folks!) This song begins and ends with Ray Manzarek meets Philip Glass keyboard work by Todd Tamanend Clark and in between features dynamic interplay between Daniel Downie on electric six-string rhythm guitar and David Granati on electric twelve-string lead guitar! The influence of Sean Bonniwell's Music Machine is also in evidence.


This instrumental composition is a funeral organ dirge combined with Native American percussion that laments the June 1968 passing of Todd Tamanend Clark's Onodowaga grandfather Price Harvey.

1.08. WOODLAND SUMMER (5:07)

"In this woodland summer,
In this woodland summer,
Civil disobedience
And a different drummer
In this woodland summer."

Todd Tamanend Clark spent the summer of 1969 living in a small one room cabin in the forest north of Waynesburg, Pennsylvania like transcendental philosopher Henry David Thoreau had done at Walden Pond. In July, he met his girlfriend Debbie Chambers while running a ride at the Jacktown Fair in Wind Ridge, Pennsylvania. In August, he moved into a countercultural commune near New Freeport, Pennsylvania.


"My bloodstream absorbs the entheogenic psilocybin,
And my sensual perceptions are extensively enhanced.
All the myriad material things that surround me
Go miraculously into a sacred sidereal dance."

In June 1970 after graduating high school, Todd Tamanend Clark moved to San Francisco where he frequented the Fillmore West and experimented with psychedelic substances. The main guitars, both acoustic and electric, are played by Michael Bruno, while the strange guitar parts are played by Todd Tamanend Clark. The trippy chorus vocals are by Lani Cerveris-Cataldi.

1.10. WE HOLD THE ROCK (6:12)

"We hold The Rock! We hold The Rock!
Today: Alcatraz! Tomorrow: Turtle Island!"

Still in San Francisco, Todd Tamanend Clark becomes involved with the Native American occupation of Alcatraz Island. All the guitar tracks are played by his son Sachem Orenda Clark.



"We are gathered here
To defy the barriers of the colonial control systems!
We are gathered here
To celebrate the freedom within the togetherness!
We are gathered here
To become one another's vehicle for newborn visions!
We are gathered here
To scream in ecstasy!!!!"

The eerie gothic wedding of Todd Tamanend Clark and Sheree Lynn Lucas occurred just as Halloween was transitioning into The Day Of The Dead on October 31/November 1, 1976. Jennifer Sternick does a fabulous job on violin, as does David Granati on electric twelve-string guitar!


"Through the American Indian Movement, we will rise again!
From now on, 'First Nations First!' until the occupation's end!
Here's where we hold the line against the destruction of our cultures!
Here's where we hold the line against the vampire and the vulture!"

Todd Tamanend Clark continues to dedicate his life to educating people about the horrible genocide that occurred during the American Holocaust (1492 to present) and to achieving justice for Native American cultures. The first and second verses deal with the abuses of Native American children in the assimilationist boarding school in Carlisle, Pennsylvania (1879-1918), but the third verse quoted above offers defiant hope! "First Nations First" is hardcore Marilyn Manson type industrial metal with heavy guitar from Sachem Orenda Clark!

2.03. RISE UP DANCING (8:27)

"Reinstate elder environmental wisdom!
Dance a primal dance to prevent cataclysm!"

"Rise Up Dancing" was written in 1985 and ominously prophesies the Idle No More liberation movement of the twenty-first century. It is an early Ministry style industrial dance song featuring David Granati on electric twelve-string guitar.

2.04. ANIMAL CONTACT (7:09)

"She has the ears of a bat; she has the eyes of a hawk;
She has the tail of a lynx; she has a rattlesnake in her walk."

This is an erotic song about a woman who has the sensual qualities of certain members of the animal kingdom. It was reconstructed by sampling and reprocessing sections of Todd Tamanend Clark's 1980s demo tapes where he plays what are now considered classic analog synthesizers and then overdubbing new vocals in 2014.

2.05. AMONG THE MANITOUS (14:37)

"Among The Manitous" is a long complex instrumental journey through a Native American spirit realm using sixty-four different settings on three E-mu synthesizers.


"We awaken and find ourselves no longer in the real world;
We awaken and hide from mirrors, damning the hand we were dealt;
We awaken and learn to transcend the propagandas of guilt;
We awaken and begin shapeshifting the Monongahela Night."

The collective indigenous behemoth rises! Todd Tamanend Clark played all the instruments on this epically long psychedelic song! (Roll over, Iron Butterfly, and tell Vanilla Fudge the news!)


"Why the earth eats the dead...
Why the land must be fed...
Why the sky turns to red...
Why the earth eats the dead..."

"Why The Earth Eats The Dead" is a demented but simplistically profound nursery rhyme about death, yet it utilizes sophisticatedly dissonant jazz chords on guitar, as well as unique theremin and woodwind applications. Lani Cerveris-Cataldi sings two slowed down choruses near the end.


"Dark Matter/Dark Energy" consists of alternating instrumental passages representing the invisible matter and energy of the universe culminating with a spacebound atonal seven-string guitar ending!



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