New York City, January 11 2003

Don Conreaux private performance, a gongingGong therapy, the cosmos, the whole alternative description of the world around us is invoked in Don 'the Gong' Conreaux’s interview, conducted at his home in Greenwich Village, New York City, on a bone-chilling Saturday in January 2003. You can hear his measured tones in RealAudio as well as read the (edited) transcript. At the end, he offered the interviewer, Mike Thorne, the gong experience: 'lie down on the bed, we'll turn the lights down, and I’ll play.'

The sound was stunning at close quarters. It became easy to see why people go cosmic over the experience. Thorne had recorded gongs many times and stuck his fat ear in them in the studio to find the best place for the hapless microphone to pick up the challenging sound. At Don’s suggestion, a recording was made in stereo on the portable DAT player used for his interview. Thorne reports that he was worried for the first 30 seconds about tape overload (the gong is one of the most technically demanding instruments in the studio), then decided that the memory of the experience was more about fun than a pristine master tape.

As happens cosmically, the tape sounded great. So, with Don 'the Gong' Conreaux’s permission, we offer (see this or our Downloads page) the six-minute personal performance as a stereo hi-res mp3 download (about 6Mb). Even in mp3, you hear the extraordinary changes and details in the performance by a true virtuoso. It’s impossible to reproduce the swirling spatial sounds you hear in front of the real thing, but you get a very exciting clue. Don’s CDs give you even more sonic stimulation, and you can buy them at his site.