YogaRevolution – Frank Fitzpatrick’s untold story
Frank Fitzpatrick is a Grammy-nominated songwriter, platinum-selling music producer and Founder/Director of EarthTones, a non-profit arts organization committed to raising social consciousness and connecting people across the globe through the power of music and media. Producer of the Yoga Revolution CD series, Frank has worked with some of the world’s most revered artists (including Ziggy Marley, Miles Davis, Jill Scott and the London Symphony) and created the soundtracks for over two-dozen feature films. A classically trained composer and award-winning filmmaker, Frank is 25 year-practitioner and certified yoga instructor in the Hatha, Bhakti and Tantric traditions, having gratefully trained with master teachers Shiva Rea, Max Strom, Jeffrey Armstrong, Saul David Ray and Rod Stryker.
What drew you to start YogaRevolution?
The greatest forces for balance and inspiration in my life are music and Yoga. In fact, I often say that I would have never lived past age 12 without music or past 25 without yoga. At the time I started Yoga Revolution, I had been making music professionally for over 20 years, and practicing yoga for just as long. I had lived through the New Age movement and seen all the Western influences of music making their way into the yoga world, but didn’t find much that I thought could open the gateway and entice a broader audience a broader audience to want to join. I wanted to open that up – to create records with the intention and integrity of all that I had studied in yoga and the spiritual philosophies upon which it was based, but that could attract and impact a much larger audience – far beyond the existing yoga communities. I was doing this every day in my career with other music and films, so why not for yoga?
How long have you been doing yoga related music?
To me, just like many of the artists on Yoga Revolution, all the music I do is “yoga related”, because I make it from the same place for with the same conscious intentions from which I practice yoga, or life for that matter. I haven’t really targeted the ‘yoga market’ with music, or worked much on making music specifically for asana practice, yoga products or kirtan recordings. I have been integrating the two worlds (music and yoga) more naturally, however, since turning my focus to EarthTones.org (“Transforming the Human Spirit through the Power of Music and Film”) about five years ago. I have also been playing at some of the yoga festivals, and for classes and kirtans, but mainly to support artists and teachers and give back to the community
What has been some of your main musical influences?
My influences are diverse. I grew up in Detroit during the end of the Motown era. So I was bathed in the music Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Aretha Franklin, the Temptations and a young Michael Jackson. Detroit was also one of the Rock & Roll centers of America. With 5 older brothers, I’d seen almost every legacy rock & R&B artist you can name live by the time I was 18. I then went on to produce jazz concerts and radio (Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Sarah Vaughn…), get a degree from the conservatory in classical composition, and move to LA to write and produce for records and film soundtracks. I worked around the globe and soaked up music from every culture I visited. At the core of everything I do musically, however, is some influence of Soul music. It is odd that it is called that, but it is at my core both musically and spiritually. I thrive on music when it feeds my soul, and I try to inspire that in others by creating from that same core channel of my being.
What made you commit to yoga?
I was looking for ways to avoid back surgery recommended to me as a way to stop the pain aggravated by scoliosis.
What are you are doing with YogaRevolution now
For 2012, we did a special edition called Music For Hope, exclusively for City of Hope’s national Yoga For Hope campaign – promoting alternative therapies (music, yoga and meditation) for life threatening diseases. I am currently working on the next edition, hopefully to include a DVD. The issue is finding strong enough partners and distributors to afford to produce a record at that level and with those kinds of popular artists. I have to be sure I can sell and reach a much larger audience than a record does selling only within the yoga communities, both to make it affordable and to reach the number of people I am committed to impacting through all the campaigns I do through EarthTones.
What has been your biggest challenge, as a music producer trying to spread the principles of yoga and why?
The challenges are two: First is finding a financial investor willing to invest enough to create high-level, commercially viable records with top artists. Next is cultivating a large enough audience to support that investment and create far-reaching impact on the people who really need it – those who don’t yet have tools like yoga, mediation or conscious music in their lives.
Founder / CEO
“Music is the one incorporeal entrance into the higher world of knowledge which comprehends mankind but which mankind cannot comprehend.” — Ludwig van Beethoven, 1810
EarthTones (“Healing the World Through Music”)
Santa Monica, CA