Blending ancient and modern instrumentation and spirit, the Baltimore-based group Telesma bridges the gap between primal and futuristic. Setting themselves apart with their intoxicating sound and extraordinary live performances, they take the audience on a soul inspiring journey that transcends this world, tantalizes the senses, and moves the body with waves of pulsating rhythm. “To experience Telesma live is to become part of the show. More than just music, it’s a swirling, whirling, twirling event…it’s extremely hard not to become involved in the swaying, hypnotic rhythms that pour forth from the stage.” Michael Macey of the Chesapeake Music Guide.
Telesma’s unique sound, often labeled “electro-acoustic psychedelic world dance music”, is driven by the ancient sound of the didgeridoo, the kubing (bamboo mouth harp), tribal drums and percussion, and the human voice. These elements are fused with modern instruments and technology to create a diverse sound ranging from intense polyrhythmic rock-n-roll, to ambient melodic meanderings, to trance-like pulses found in modern electronic dance/groove music.
Themes of higher consciousness, philosophy, connectivity, peace, and universal archetypes merge with influences from folklore, various mythologies and religion, nature, fantasy, art, and other mystical elements to create the root of Telesma’s inspirational message. This sound can be heard on the group’s albums “O(h)M” (2007) and “Hearing Visions:Live: (2009), both released on their independent label “sTRANGELY cOMPELLING mUSIC”.
A Telesma performance creates a mystical atmosphere, taps into the energy of music, and evokes a primal celebration of mind, body, and spirit with their audience. Besides the visual spectacle of the band itself, their performances often include elaborate multimedia projections, belly dancing by local and nationally known dancers, fire spinning, and performance art/interpretive dance by various artists. Performance collaborations include Alex & Allyson Grey, Al Zaruba, and The Indra Lazul Bellydancers to name a few.
Telesma was formed in 2002 by Ian Hesford (didgeridoo, kubing, dumbek, percussion) and Jason Sage (keyboards, percussion, programmer, lyrics). The two then added musicians Joanne Juskus (vocals, percussion, karatalas), Chris Mandra (guitar, analog guitar synth, his unique manDrum, and vocals), Bryan Jones “Jonesy” (6 string MIDI & upright basses, theremin, percussion), and Rob Houck (drum kit, percussion, electronic drums) to complete the lineup.