Positive Living Vibrations with Sara Troy and her guests Kat Diamond and Danny Shuford. Aired March 13th on
They took a journey of trust and faith to explore a life together, freeing in life-liberation on and vibrational healing by embracing music and the wonderful opportunities that everyday life has to share.
Danny was introduced to music at a very young age. He says, My first recollection was my dad singing old negro spiritual songs to my brother and I when he would put us to sleep. Mom was the church pianist/organist as was my grandmother and aunt. Live music was very prevalent at all family gatherings. I remember listening to all my parent’s records which ranged from Elvis to old traditional marching band, to old country. My first real concert was at the World’s Fair in San Antonio, TX in 1968. My folks took us to see Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass which happened to be one of my favourite records. I remember being infatuated with the drummer and percussionist. From then on, every time I saw live music I couldn’t keep my eyes off the drummer. I never really told anyone of my love of drumming but interestingly enough during Christmas of 1971, my little brother received a Sears snare drum and small crash cymbal. I took it over and started playing along to all records of the day. I soon joined a youth group that had a full band. There I met my idol and sole inspiration; Ricky Atkins. Ricky was the drummer of the youth praise band. He sold me one of his old drum kits which were an old pieced together Slingerland kit for $60 and let me string it out on a payment plan of $5.00 a month. He also gave me free lessons since I was unable to afford to pay. I always made a promise to myself that I would never charge someone who really wanted to learn to drum. To this day, I have yet to ever receive monies for a drum lesson. I have had many gifts given to me . “
One night in 2010 I was visiting my grown daughter Marisa. As I lay in bed I reflected back on just how good music had been to me through the years. I had been blessed to have worked with some amazing musicians, played some incredible venues, and recorded in some of the finest studios. I also just happened to be in the best physical shape of my life. I had been a competing body builder back in the late 80s but still continued to lift four to five times a week. One thing that really hit me was that I always seemed to be the healthiest when I was gigging the most. I also realized that I was very rarely ill. In fact, other than surgery from a motorcycle accident, I haven’t been to a doctor in over 40 years I also noted that when ever I was feeling under the weather yet still had obligations as a performing musician, I always came away after the performance feeling invigorated and many times free from all discomfort. Could it be there was a correlation I asked myself? “
I started researching everything I could about sound/vibrational healing. My quest took me to Taos where I met a Native American healer by the name of Adasti Gadaheeknown to most as “Grandmother Jean”. I assisted Adasti in several healing circles over the next couple of years as her drummer. One day Adasti asked me to assist her with a circle in Carbondale, CO. Even though Carbondale was about a three and a half hour drive from where I was living at the time, I accepted. To my surprise, I met an incredible woman whom I became immediately drawn to. Out of reverence to the work Adasti was performing, I refrained from approaching Kat other than professionally. We both knew there was more in store for the two of us both in music and in love so we joined together on an adventure to discover what most will only dream about.
Kat says Music was a part of life from the very beginning. My father had a beautiful stereo system and taught me to use it at a very young age and gave me full access to all his record albums. Interestingly enough Herb Albert and the Tijuana Brass was one of my all time favourites bands which I just learned was an early musical influence in Danny’s life as well, go figure! My father had all the classics of the day and I went from Sinatra to the Beatles to Beethoven’s 5th all afternoon. Classical music was his favourite and he would also play the harmonica and sing songs from his birthplace in Iceland for me. My mother likes to sing while she painted or when she put me to bed and she took me to every cultural event that she could find in our area. I started dancing when I was four years old and have memories of liking ballet but felt much more at home in tap class and in modern dance. At home I would put on entire Broadway shows to an empty audience every day after school, everything from Fiddler on the Rood and the Sound of Music to Chorus Line as got older. I began playing the clarinet as soon as was old enough to join the school band in 5th grade but singing was always my first love.
I began doing musical theatre productions starting with Godspell at our church. I fell instantly in love with the stage and the magic of performance. From that point on I took on every show I could get into and finally landed a job as a singing waitress on a harbour cruise ship in Philadelphia. As a nineteen-year-old wife and mother, that job was lucrative enough to help me pay for college and raise my son. From there I launched into my first professional theatre gig and actually received a paycheck! For many years I raised my older son and had two more amazing boys. My work as a kindergarten teacher and a “Music Together” teacher during these years revolved around what I would call the “healing of families” through music.
In fact I barely ever spoke in my kindergarten room, choosing instead to sing through the day as it kept the children in a “safe and open” place.
Many years later as a healer and a holistic professional music and sound has resurfaced in my life in a therapeutic way.Rather than just using my own voice I provide a way for people to find the innate sounds that connect to various energy centres and organs within their n bodies. Ido this in order to open the doors for the movement and release of energies that are old, stagnant, and no longer serving the client. These sounds are authentic to the individual and connect to the emotional body as well. The truth is that persons own voice signature is the most healing for their own body. Touching into these sounds and tones can encourage laughter, joy, tears, anger, pent up emotion, bursts of energy and ultimately lightness of being. Little did Iknow as I studied and played the flute with Adasti Gadahee a Native American Healer and intuitive that I would eventually meet Danny who was also working with her and that we would join together on a beautiful and soulful adventure of love and musical discovery. “
I remember an early trip Danny and I made together to Arizona from Colorado. It was so fun for each of us to pull out our favourite music from previous decades on up and sing to each other and together. We found to my delight much-shared inspiration, so many artists who we felt were so important in our own development and appreciation for music. And in that, we also have so many new inspirations to share with each other. In that one weekend, we found an ease for travelling together and I don’t think the stereo was off for one moment except when we were reading to each other.
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