Rachel performs at Be Hear Now and other sound healings with her crystal singing bowls and beautiful vocals…
What’s your musical background?
I grew up in a house with a recording studio in my garage. I have always been exposed to the world of music, production, singing, and sound engineering from the moment I was able to walk. Music has always been an emotional outlet for me, and I never saw ‘not doing music’ as an option growing up. I graduated from Newtown Performing Arts High School with honours in Music in 2006, took a gap year, began performing at local restaurants, booked a residency at a waterside restaurant in Penrith which I held for 3 years, and in that time I began performing at weddings, pubs, clubs, hotels and the like, solo, then a covers duo for around 7 years in Sydney. All of my experience has been gained through performance, and through teaching voice to individual students over the past several years. Articulating what it was that I had uncovered through my trial and error, allowed me to better understand my voice as an instrument, and served only to enhance my abilities exponentially.
How did you come to discover crystal bowls and how long have you been playing them?
In 2018, I attended a festival called Earth Frequency in South East Queensland. I had set an intention to learn how to meditate. On the first night, I attended a workshop called ‘Women in the Music Industry’ which I felt drawn to experience, the panel was undetermined, and when the organizer discovered my background I was invited to speak on the panel, where I shared an acapella version of my original song ‘Welcome to Paradise’. Upon the end of the workshop, a beautiful sister named Opal approached me and asked if I might teach her how to sing with her crystal singing bowls. I had never even heard of singing bowls at this stage of my journey, when I explained this to her, she insisted we organize a time over the weekend so that I could experience them properly. After the festival had finished, and many had begun their journey home, Opal created a space for me to receive my very first sound healing. I laid down, she then guided me into a state of relaxation by bringing my awareness to my breath, and then began to play the bowls… I don’t remember anything from the session… I woke up in silence sometime later, and a part of me was relaxed, and the other was trying to make sense of what had just transpired. I knew something had shifted, and that I needed to get myself at least one so that I could continue to meditate after my first incidental meditative experience with them. In the months following, I obtained one, then 5, at which time I learned about the difference between 440hz, 432hz, then I had 10, then 14, then 18 crystal bowls. I had them all in a bookshelf in my home studio and I would play them together like the notes on a piano. I shared the music I was making with them (not yet singing) with friends and family, all of which were reporting very deep meditative and emotional experiences, their feedback served to build my confidence as when I would look up other sound healers, it was clear to me that no one was working with these instruments in the musical way that I was, so I continued along my path of exploration. By the end of the year, I began holding space at festivals and continued to do so, touring the east coast, for the following 12 months. In June 2019 I acquired my first set of Alchemy Crystal Tones Singing Bowls, which between 4 bowls, hosted 16 different crystals and therefore boosted the potency and quality of my sound journeys as I was no longer amplifying my energy, but I was transmitting the unique healing benefits of each crystal contained within the bowls. In November of that same year, the Alchemy Bowls vanished, I went overseas and when I came back they were gone – I had become quite dependant upon the Alchemy Bowls as my ‘favourite’ bowls, and to lose them was truly devastating, however, a voice came through, as I had impending sound healings coming up regardless, and said to me “Rachel, you are the crystal bowl!” This was my cue and guidance to begin singing with the crystal bowls consistently, and as I began to do so, a whole new world of sound and harmonic resonance opened up to me.
Why do you play them?
I play them because of how they make me feel inside of my body, mind, and soul. My spirit is deeply connected to sound and frequency, and the crystal bowls speak to my heart like no other instrument has been able to. When I experience the crystal bowls, the voice inside my head goes quiet, I become completely present with the tone, and for a moment there is nothing more important than the stillness and peace induced through their sound. Upon first toning with the bowls, I could feel every imperfection in my voice, as the tone of the crystal bowls is so pure, it would take a lot of opening and surrender to vibrate with them, and to compliment them musically. I learned how to harmonize, improvise, and let go of control. The crystal bowls demanded that I just sing, and stop thinking about how I was sounding, or how I wanted to sound – they called deeply for me to love, trust the journey, and dive into a more authentic expression of my voice. Every time I vocalize with the bowls, it is a new experience, a new melody or harmony, a new frequency of energy to tap into and express. I play the bowls because they are healing me every time I do so. I play them for others so they may also experience the profound energetic, physical, spiritual, and emotional shifts that I do.
What other instruments do you use for sound healings?
I work with the THETA Ocean Drum, the only 3 layered ocean drum in the world, handmade in Italy. I also use Koshi Bells and a 432hz chime to bring everyone back into their bodies when the sound journey is completed.
What else outside of music makes you happy and keeps you grounded?
The ocean, surfing on my stand-up paddle board, swimming, yoga, meditation, dancing, writing songs, creating, breathing, and being a human on planet earth!
What part does music play in your everyday life?
I use all of my alchemy bowl music to heal myself on an everyday basis. The crystal singing bowls accompany all of my rituals, from yoga to meditation, to ceremonies around cacao, and even blessing my food and water. My life without music wouldn’t be my life. There isn’t a day where it doesn’t play a role, whether it be singing my favourite song, or drifting off to sleep.
Top 5 of anything:
- Right hand clean point break on sunrise
- Eva Cassidy
Links to other sound healing sessions and workshops:
30th November: A Crystal Sound Journey @ The LoveLight Crystal Sound Healing Temple
Online Store (Digital Crystal Sound Journeys)