Jack Canfield Jack Canfield author. speaker. motivator.

Affectionately known as "America's #1 Success Coach," Jack Canfield is the originator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series and a leading authority in the areas of self-esteem, achievement motivation, and peak performance. [www.jackcanfield.com]

 
Arianna Huffington Arianna Huffington political powerhouse. media mogul. author.

Arianna Huffington is the co-founder and Editor in Chief of the Huffington Post and the author of twelve books. [www.huffingtonpost.com]

 
Seth Godin Seth Godin author. speaker. linchpin.

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Krishna Kaur Krishna Kaur yogi. philanthropist. dynamic teacher.

Krishna Kaur is the founder of YOGA for Youth, a program that takes yoga, meditation, and stimulating discussions on the philosophy of yoga to urban youth. [www.yogaforyouth.org]

 
Norman Lear Norman Lear producer. philanthropist. tv legend.

Norman Lear has enjoyed a long career in television and film. He is also a political and social activist and philanthropist. [www.normanlear.com]

 
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By going undercover to meet slaves and slaveholders, Kevin Bales exposed modern slavery's penetration into the global economy. He co-founded Free the Slaves, which has helped to liberate thousands of slaves. [www.freetheslaves.net]

 
Sophie Chiche Sophie Chiche mom. big dreamer. lady in red.

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Mastin Kipp Mastin Kipp Writer. Entrepreneur. Daily Lover.

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Liz Phair Liz Phair singer. musician. crier.

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Desmond Tutu Desmond Tutu archbishop. author. peaceful leader.

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Zainab Salbi Zainab Salbi author. ceo. humanitarian.

Zainab Salbi is the founder and CEO of Women for Women International, a group dedicated to helping women survivors of war rebuild their lives. [www.womenforwomen.org]

 
Sean Stephenson Sean Stephenson speaker. psychotherapist. life embracer.

Despite his physical challenges, Sean Stephenson has taken a stand for a quality of life that has inspired millions of people around the world. He's a professional speaker, psychotherapist, and author. [www.timetostand.com]

 
Kia Miller Kia Miller yogi. meditator. teacher.

Kia Miller teaches Yoga at Yoga Works in Los Angeles, leads teacher trainings, and runs retreats and workshops on meditation, chakras, pranayam, and mantras, and other practices. [www.kiamiller.com]

 
Simon Mainwaring Simon Mainwaring creator. writer. idea geek.

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Shannon Bindler Shannon Bindler Strategist. Writer. Life Coach.

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Mathieu Bitton Mathieu Bitton Designer. Art Director. Passionate Creator.

Grammy-nominated art director/designer/photographer Mathieu Bitton has designed over 450 CDs and movie posters. He's a renowned collector of and authority on black films and their soundtracks. [www.candytangerine.com]

 
Jorge Perez Jorge Perez Agent. Producer. Photography Enthusiast.

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in concert

Christine Stevens Christine Stevens music therapist. speaker. drum healer.

Christine Stevens is an internationally acclaimed author, music therapist, and speaker. She founded UpBeat Drum Circles, offering personal growth seminars and programs for corporate teambuilding and diversity training. [www.ubdrumcircles.com]

PostSTEVENS

Christine has graciously included a song with her feature. It’s a chant from the Congo which loosely translates as “come to the circle/party/song.”

What’s most meaningful to me is music. It’s an infinite composition I get to live. Sometimes I’m in harmony with other pieces and sometimes I’m a soloist. It’s less about what I play and more about how I become an instrument. What intrigues me is to march to the beat of my own drum, to find my rhythm, and to balance that uniqueness in harmony with others. To live in concert.

Rhythm is defined as the element of music pertaining to forward motion, so I often find that the drum shows up as people are changing and moving into a new phase. Percussion and drumming are universal. They’re a passport to indigenous cultures and even global diplomacy, in that the drum is used for communication. Drumming is accessible. It’s inclusive. Everyone can do it. It builds the morale of the team. It calms the child. It holds the mother’s heartbeat. Rhythm is a primal force.

In a children’s rehabilitation center in Iraq, there was a little boy whose legs had been blown off by landmines. He looked so depressed, slumped over in his wheelchair. But when I handed him a drum and he joined in our drum circle, his face brightened and his eyes started to twinkle. His family’s jaws dropped. After I collected the drums and was walking away, I heard a beat. I turned to see him tapping a pen on the side of his wheelchair. He was saying, “The beat is not in that drum. It’s in me.”

It takes courage to put yourself out there in music. You can’t hide. And sometimes I do get out of rhythm. For me, getting back into rhythm requires a pause, which is an element of rhythm. The silence between beats recalibrates my groove. Maybe I need to be alone and silent, or to sit and drum by myself, setting aside the idea that music is a performance and remembering that it’s transformative.

Music is inside us. Music is something we receive and give. So listen to music constantly. Pick music that inspires you and has a good message. Choose your music, and then be part of the music. Bang on the desk at the office. Sing in the shower. Let music go both ways.

We need music. Its powerful heart-to-heart, soul-to-soul connection transcends barriers. Music is the language of the future. How else can this many people have one common language?

– Christine Stevens

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