Slay Your Dragons - Malcolm Stern

Harmonizing Life's Cacophony: The Spiritual Odyssey of Rock Legend Louis Cennamo

March 01, 2024 John
Harmonizing Life's Cacophony: The Spiritual Odyssey of Rock Legend Louis Cennamo
Slay Your Dragons - Malcolm Stern
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Slay Your Dragons - Malcolm Stern
Harmonizing Life's Cacophony: The Spiritual Odyssey of Rock Legend Louis Cennamo
Mar 01, 2024
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Rock legend Louis Cennamo joins us, trading the electric buzz of bass strings for soul-stirring tales of spiritual metamorphosis. From thumping rhythms for Chuck Berry to a psychedelic awakening in Sausalito, Louis's journey transcends the melody, diving into life's deeper chords. His candid reflections on touring with Rod Stewart, the Beatles' Apple Records audition, and his integral part in James Taylor's debut album paint a picture of a musician whose tune is ever-evolving, echoing with the wisdom acquired through decades of life in the spotlight and beyond.

Our conversation with Louis takes an extraordinary twist as he recounts the tour with Renaissance, a portal to his spiritual enlightenment. Imagine standing on the brink of the Yardbirds' legacy, then tumbling into a psychedelic experience that reshapes your entire existence. Louis's story navigates through this transformative realm, where music and spirituality dance in harmony, leading to profound self-discoveries and a life dedicated not just to healing melodies but to the healing of souls.

As we close this emotional symphony, Louis reminds us that the music never fades, even as the applause quietens. Beyond the concept of retirement lies his relentless pursuit of jazz and the introspective act of penning down a life rich with notes both high and low. His is a testament that every challenge is a verse in our personal epic, an opportunity to grow, to confront the dragons within—not with a sword, but with the grace of a maestro composing his next masterpiece. Join us for this compelling episode, where the life of Louis Cennamo resonates as a beacon for all who seek harmony amid the cacophony of existence.

This Podcast is sponsored by Onlinevents 

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Send us a Text Message.

Rock legend Louis Cennamo joins us, trading the electric buzz of bass strings for soul-stirring tales of spiritual metamorphosis. From thumping rhythms for Chuck Berry to a psychedelic awakening in Sausalito, Louis's journey transcends the melody, diving into life's deeper chords. His candid reflections on touring with Rod Stewart, the Beatles' Apple Records audition, and his integral part in James Taylor's debut album paint a picture of a musician whose tune is ever-evolving, echoing with the wisdom acquired through decades of life in the spotlight and beyond.

Our conversation with Louis takes an extraordinary twist as he recounts the tour with Renaissance, a portal to his spiritual enlightenment. Imagine standing on the brink of the Yardbirds' legacy, then tumbling into a psychedelic experience that reshapes your entire existence. Louis's story navigates through this transformative realm, where music and spirituality dance in harmony, leading to profound self-discoveries and a life dedicated not just to healing melodies but to the healing of souls.

As we close this emotional symphony, Louis reminds us that the music never fades, even as the applause quietens. Beyond the concept of retirement lies his relentless pursuit of jazz and the introspective act of penning down a life rich with notes both high and low. His is a testament that every challenge is a verse in our personal epic, an opportunity to grow, to confront the dragons within—not with a sword, but with the grace of a maestro composing his next masterpiece. Join us for this compelling episode, where the life of Louis Cennamo resonates as a beacon for all who seek harmony amid the cacophony of existence.

This Podcast is sponsored by Onlinevents 

Malcolm Stern:

So welcome to my podcast, slay your Dragons With Compassion, which is made in conjunction with the wonderful online events, and I'm having a succession of guests who are looking at key moments in their lives, where their lives have changed and what it is that's brought about that change. And today I'm very happy to be interviewing a very old friend of mine, louis Chinamo, and Louis is still an extraordinary rock musician, but he's also a healer, and his life's taken many twists and turns. So, louis, can you tell us a little bit about what you started off, as you started off as quite a? I remember very, very early on you were playing bass guitar for Chuck Berry.

Louis Cennamo:

Yes, amongst others, malcolm, Very early on I started in my early. Well, I learned bass actually in my early teens, but before that my dear old uncle had bought me a very old guitar, so I started on guitar and then I, by the age of 15 or so, I was sort of ignoring schoolwork and playing bass, practicing in my bedroom etc. Which gradually led to the cut a long story short of career in music and with that, in my early teens I was playing with people like Chuck Berry and Sister Rosetta and other American artists who were brought over by an agent that I was working with at that time and before that, of course, with Rod Stewart, who, as we started out in the same band together as teenagers and gradually it led to a career which led me to playing with people like Chuck Berry. At the same time, I was realising that I had another dimension to my life. I started coming through in various degrees, through events that happened. Did you actually ask me about? What was the turning point of changing?

Malcolm Stern:

Yeah, we'll come to that. So your life's taken quite a lot of twists and turns and you've been in the sort of like right up at the sort of cutting edge of the rock and roll industry where you were playing to crowds of 100,000 and stuff like that. So what was that like?

Louis Cennamo:

first of all, Well, it was something I felt was normal. I didn't really know anything else really because I started off on, you know, very early on. I left school at 16 instead of 18 and my parents really supported me because they knew I was in love with music and so that's what it was. It was the love that carried me through various degrees of success with music early on. As you've said, chuck Berry and other artists Right, the band I was with was a teenage band really.

Louis Cennamo:

We had the band with Rod Stewart, as I said, that toured for a bit. We toured Scotland with Rod and got very experienced early on. We did a lot of American airbases as well, which was interesting because we got to see things from the American soldiers, you know, who were airmen rather I should say not soldiers, but they were airmen and they took to the bands that came to play there. They had headquarters in Suffolk and Longfork and places like that, and by the age of, I suppose, 1920, I was already becoming a bit of a veteran really, because I'd worked with a lot of artists who were well known and gaining a lot of experience in that field as well.

Malcolm Stern:

So yeah it was exciting.

Louis Cennamo:

At the same time as I said, I felt it was normal because I didn't know any other way of reacting. I was expecting things to come to me and they did.

Malcolm Stern:

Yes and presumably you had money from it and had some groupies throwing themselves at you.

Louis Cennamo:

you had the whole rock and roll Well, a little bit, yes, but the money has never been an issue for me. It was all about the love of music. I mean, it was money, but it wasn't big money. At that time we were a young band and a little bit naive. We had a manager that he wasn't that cool with giving us all the things that we'd earned. So we say so yeah, basically, I suppose by the time I was 21, 22, I was starting to feel that the music I loved to play was not really quite what I was actually playing, but another thing as well. But I was doing sessions quite a lot at that time and I'd worked with various bands that had names like Peter Frant and Emma Heard. Then I did the James Taylor album, which was another amazing story, the first James Taylor album on the Beatles label Apple.

Malcolm Stern:

And, of course, you hung out with the Beatles when you were working with James Taylor at the Apple Studio Apple Building in the Savile Row.

Louis Cennamo:

Yeah, that's another story. That's sort of in my autobiography that I'm writing, and it was quite magical really, because I answered a little advert in the local Melody Maker and Music newspaper. Two tiny little sentences that said Apple records require bass player for a new artist Didn't say anything else there were all these big flashy ads in there but just this one sentence basically. So I went along and shall I tell you that story now of what happened? Well, yes yes, shall, I Did you say yes.

Malcolm Stern:

Yeah, yeah, that's good.

Louis Cennamo:

That's good. Yeah, well, I was sort of taken up to the West End. It was. The audition was to be held at the Beatles over the Beatles shop. They had a closed shop at that time when they were doing the White House and things like that.

Louis Cennamo:

And when I got there there was a queue of bass players coming out of the shop door, going around the corner and out of sight down the street. And being a proud professional, I thought at the time, well, I'm not gonna queue up with them, I'm going home. And I was about to turn around and go and there was a voice came from upstairs above the shop and called out my name. It said oh, louis, you come about the audition. I said yeah. I said, but I'm not gonna. He said no, don't worry about the queue. He said I'll come down, wait a minute. So he came down and he introduced himself to me again.

Louis Cennamo:

He was a guy called John from a band that used to support the herd while I was with them, and he recognized me from the window. He said well, come up. He said, come upstairs. He said don't queue up. So I went in with him and I followed him up the stairs and it was a bass player on every step on the stairs, looking very full on and bedraggled really. And anyway, he sort of said well, just wait here.

Louis Cennamo:

And I was sort of the top of the stairs and he sat. There was a chair there, so I sat outside this door and then he disappeared into another room which must have been his office, and the next thing I know there's a couple of guys coming past that looked a little bit like someone I should recognize which I'll tell you in a minute who it was and the door suddenly opens and James is standing there and they said oh, louis, you'll get great to meet you and you're coming in, so I go in. And then within a few seconds we're sort of playing together.

Louis Cennamo:

We played a 12-bar blues and this went on for a little while as we developed it, because 12-bar blues is always the same chord sequence, more or less. So at the end of that we stopped playing. The blues came to an end and two people were sort of crouched behind a desk out of sight while we were playing and as they got up it turned out to be John Lennon and Ringo Starr and they said to James oh, we told you it would be all right, james, he told you it was nothing to worry about. So that was it. And then I realized that our little miracle had happened and I got this gig, and it turned out to be with rubbing showers, with the beetles really, which at that time was a big thing, particularly because it was near the end of their time together and they were doing the White.

Louis Cennamo:

Album. And so when Peter Asher introduced himself to me and he was producing the album and there was another guy with him and it was Paul McCartney who was also taking a big interest and involved, so suddenly I was in there from this little audition in the Melody Maker, rubbing shoulders with everyone, and then we started playing some of his numbers if he wanted to do, and he brought the drummer over from America as well, a lovely chap called Bishop O'Brien, and we started rehearsing James' songs basically, and then we were playing.

Malcolm Stern:

You've been in some big bands like Steam, Hammer, Armageddon, Renaissance. I mean some beautiful music you made with Renaissance son. I was a big fan of them before I even knew you, so yeah, that was funny, wasn't it?

Louis Cennamo:

pal, that's yeah. Well, that came just a little bit later, a year or two later. Renaissance was probably the most important band in my life from many ways, because it was the band where my spiritual path opened up from.

Malcolm Stern:

And that's why I'm very interested in is your spiritual path, because it's so easy to get lost in the world where achievement, fame, glory are the other norm. But something happened for you which has moved you into a very different direction, and I know that you have been on this path for a long time and that you actually have a great gift for healing, and so I'd just be interested to see what opened the path for you and how did that manifest?

Louis Cennamo:

Well, after the James album was done, we were rehearsing it, incidentally playing the sessions in the Beatles recording time. They'd take breaks and then we'd go in and do something. So when that actually finished, that was then I was sort of looking at what to do next, really, because James had to go back to America because he was unwell and he said he was going to come back and we'll meet again. But that didn't happen in fact, because I started doing sessions for a chap called Peter Gage, who was the guitarist with a band called the Ram Jam Band, who were quite big at the time as well, but he'd become a fixer. He was fixing sessions for musicians and I got to do sessions with him and during that time the yard birds have broken up and one day I got a call from Jim Carty, the drummer, and basically through Peter Gage, who had connected us, and he said oh, you know, keith Ralph and I want to put a new band together, something very unique. So that became Renaissance.

Louis Cennamo:

I know you asked me about the spiritual path, but leading up to that basically was with Renaissance, and I felt a really deep spiritual connection with the musicians right from day one and the music that they wanted to do was not like the rock music of the yard birds. They wanted to get away from it, even though they become very famous from it. But they wanted to try something very different, something with a more spiritual emphasis on it. And of course then that's when we started connecting and rehearsing together and that eventually led to other members coming in John Hawkin became the pianist in the band, who'd previously been with the Nashville teens a very popular band at that time and Keith Ralph's sister joined on vocals and we started putting a very unusual set of music together, with a spiritual emphasis really, and many, many things led to what was going to become my first real spiritual awakening, which I don't know, if you want to talk about that yet.

Malcolm Stern:

Yeah, yes, yes, they should all be the voice.

Louis Cennamo:

Well, the awakening. We're on to the awakening. I left a lot of help, but anyway, the awakening was a tour of America. It began with a tour of America with Renaissance. We had recorded before that a very unusual and spiritualized, I would say, album of music which got us to America, and because obviously we had two Yardbirds in the band, there was a lot of interest from people. So we basically we started the tour and it went very well, even though a lot of people were expecting Yardbirds music really, and you know, with big, you know, the guitarists Clapton and Beck, etc. And Jimmy Page were by this time big stars there too, and Keith and Jim wanted to sort of take it very easy, take it slowly and not sort of get into a big sort of splash of publicity. So we did this tour and it was, you know, major halls and small clubs combined and it went very well.

Louis Cennamo:

We got to San Francisco and we were playing at the Fillmore West, which is, you know, the big eagle on the West Coast, basically in San Francisco, and one day we were doing four or five night sessions at the Fillmore West, which was famous for a lot of psychedelic music as well, because it was the home of the great four dead who used to pass acid around to their audience to get them in the right space to pick the music up. Of course I wasn't a drug taker at all. So you know, I felt something and because the spirituality was evolving already very sort of gently in my life, I wasn't thinking about taking psychedelics or anything. I wanted to stay pure energy really in my playing etc. And I didn't know enough about psychedelics at that time. But as it happened, fate was to bring another aspect of my consciousness into it, because on the third night of the stint that we were doing it was the 8th of March 1970, because I always remember that day I was actually in a hotel in Sozolito, in the outskirts across the bridge from where the gig was in San Francisco, and it was a lovely sunny day and I was sitting with John Hawking, pianist, and we were talking about the gig the night before and ordering a nice big American breakfast and everything was really good. I was so happy because we've been accepted so well. I was getting a reputation as well as a as a bassist and you know it couldn't have been better on the worldly side of things.

Louis Cennamo:

And then fate stepped in, really, because before I went down to breakfast with John, I was looking for the others and they weren't around. And there was. Our manager was had a was in the next hotel room to me and I went in. He was having a friendship with a lady from the tourists, the tour organizers, and I went in to see if they wanted to come down for breakfast. But they weren't in the room and strangely, there was a glass of a glass, with a tiny drop of orange juice in it. You know where this is going now, don't you? So this tiny little orange juice.

Louis Cennamo:

For some reason I would never drink out of people's glasses at that time, but for some reason I was strangely attracted to this glass. It was sort of on a table near the window and it had a sort of aura about I don't know it. Just, I just felt dry and I was going down for breakfast and I drank it and I thought no more about it. Well, that's it. I think we must have gone out for a walk or something. So I went down and sat with John, as I said, and then waited for the breakfast arrived, and not as it did arrive, then I started to feel very, very strange, very, very, very weird. You know, everything around me started to change and what was solid in the room, suddenly I could see it was disintegrating into, into nothing. Really, as I see it I mean, I see it as energy now, but then of course I wasn't aware of that. So as I looked around me and I looked down at my legs, there was nothing there. I couldn't see any legs, I couldn't see John, you know no breakfast, and I just felt totally scared. You know what's this? A non drug taker up again, and everything was becoming nothing, the everything and the nothing. And as I looked further at what was around me, all I could see was swirling mass of atoms and molecules, particles. Everything else was there, was nothing else to be seen by that. And as I looked down again at my legs, they weren't there.

Louis Cennamo:

But I had this strange thought. I thought, well, I'm dying, but if I'm going to die, I want to die on the bed. For some reason, I don't know why I said that now, but so I willed myself, without legs and without body. You know, I willed myself up to the bedroom and suddenly I'm on the bed looking up at the ceiling, scared, terrified. And then, as I let go, I thought well, you know, let go, there's nothing, you're dying, so let go. And then the next thing I did was let go.

Louis Cennamo:

And then I felt this energy. It was like a vortex of energy at the ceiling level of my head and it pulled me up. It just sort of went. It pulled me up and at that point I was looking down at the bed with my peaceful body on it and all the fear had totally disappeared.

Louis Cennamo:

I was in total bliss, absolute bliss, and I was laughing to myself. I had no body in that place, you know. I was just energy, pure consciousness, and all I remember doing was laughing and saying what on earth was I ever afraid of? This is bliss. This is who I am, this is who everyone is. There was this blissful awareness and as the laughter just increased, I could hear it in my bodiless form. I could hear the energy expanding and there was a silver cord, like a cord of energy that I could go up and down to the body on the bed and I went, did that maybe a couple of times and then suddenly I was back on the bed. I've been sort of taken back into the room and the bliss was. It came with me. The bliss came with me and, you know, from that point on it began the actual process of my spiritual journey.

Malcolm Stern:

And I've known you for about 40 years now.

Louis Cennamo:

It's over 50.

Malcolm Stern:

Oh my God, that dates us both Amazing. But I do know you as someone who actually does experience bliss a lot of the time. So, although I never prescribed that people should be taking drugs. There is something about. Sometimes there's a doorway that we go through, whether it be through meditation I think meditation is a very healthy way to go through that door or whether we have some sort of psychedelic experience. You had an experience that actually changed your life and opened a door effectively, and you did it.

Louis Cennamo:

Yes, as a non-drug taker, then and now, although I was compelled to the thought that I had when the drug eventually wore off the next morning and a lot happened between now and that I had to go on stage that night as well, three inches above my head, or three feet above my head sometimes, trying to play a bass guitar, which was impossible, I did somehow by miraculous consciousness. So what did you ask me, mark Forgotten?

Malcolm Stern:

This is like the doorway that gets opened. Something happened opened a doorway that actually has changed your life and it's not that that moment changed your life but then it becomes a process where your life is different and you're no longer sort of like, sort of out there in front of you know, tens or thousands of people playing music, or some as hundreds of thousands of people playing music. But there's something else that you found that seems to have brought you a lot of peace, and I'm interested in where that led to.

Louis Cennamo:

Well, it was that night that brought it to the fore for me, and I'm telling you something that happened over 50 years ago, as if it is happening in the now, which of course it is on one level, and the beauty of that was that I had to go through the process of the psychedelic doing its theme. It had opened doors, as you just say, because suddenly I was in a totally blissful state of consciousness and I knew this was my true being and I knew also that it was everyone's. When they were ready, if you like, and what had made me ready was a bit of a mystery really, because I hadn't been a drunk taker, had no intention of taking it, and what I did after that. I wanted the bliss back and I did experiment with it for a while, anyway, up until about 1976, when I had another sort of second, very, very deep experience with it, another blissful experience.

Louis Cennamo:

And that night, which made it more towards the question you asked, was that I had to play a very, very complex renaissance set where I was playing in unison with the pianist on many of the parts of the music, some of which I'd composed myself as well, and they were sort of bark style and very precise and from above the body. It was literally nine possible to get anywhere near articulating that. So I did my best, but I knew again. One of the blessings was we were playing to the grateful dead's audience and they were with me. They didn't care what I played, they were just in my energy. They were with the consciousness that I was in at the time.

Louis Cennamo:

So I had to play through and I muddled through the set with that as well, and at the end they went wild because the set ended with a bass solo which was me on my own, without having to play with anyone else, and I just went whoosh. I just went into the universe and suddenly I was one with the universe and the bass was playing. The music was playing me and all I had to do was observe it, which is an experience I'd had before as well. But it was very, very noticeable now that it was very much for this moment that all my preparation before had been really to be able to be consciously aware that the music was playing through me. Yeah, and as you.

Malcolm Stern:

Of course. You're in your late 70s now and actually your life has taken a whole different slant, and I know you run healing servers. I know that you've actually brought something of the bliss that you try to bring into other people. Can you tell us how that functions?

Louis Cennamo:

Well, as you say, I mean, the next day I was left with very flat when the drug had ceased to doing its thing. I was like someone that's just on a hangover situation, really, and all I could really say to myself was I want my bliss back. You know, I felt that I'd lost this thing, and then it went on for quite a while after, actually, and basically how it led on then to healing was quite a. It began with this experience, basically because I realised that my path had opened up now, doors had opened up to explore the depths of being. Really. I had to go with that flow and even though I played with bands after that like with Steam Hammer, as you mentioned, which is a very big band in Germany at the time, and we were travelling around Europe a lot, etc.

Louis Cennamo:

And I sort of let this sort of out of my awareness for a while I was caught up in music, but it was always in the back of my mind that there was something deeper for me to take on board now than just playing rock music with a band, you know. So along the way, many things happened that drew me back towards the path which eventually would lead to becoming a healer. Yes, it was very much started from that experience of a psychedelic experience which was luckily, or maybe not so much to do with luck, but more with providence. That was my path opening up. You know, it was something that had always been there, it wasn't new, it was from my inner being and it was coming out at the time when the time was right.

Louis Cennamo:

And that led to various experiences with spiritual groups. When I met you, for example, I was in the spiritual community at the time which I played a part in it all as well, because people within that even though it wasn't about healing so much, it was a very sort of old spiritual community in many ways, but people within it used to ask me to give them healing, you know, and I used to say, well, what do you want me to do? I said, well, just put your hands on, just keep your hands near us. But it wasn't just to do with hands, it was consciousness evolving really.

Malcolm Stern:

And it seems like your life is peaceful now. That's the sort of sense I have around you. So there's a lot of peace around you and there's no sort of craving for sort of big adventures, and yet there's a sort of sense that you're bringing your gift to the world as much as you possibly can, in as many ways as you can.

Louis Cennamo:

Well, when we met, for example, malcolm way back then in 1980, I think it was, wasn't it I was still very much aware of what I had experienced back in San Francisco, even while I was with that group. I actually travelled back to America with one of the group because they were connected with the United Nations as a peace organisation you mentioned in peace brought it back to me then that we had been there as a non-governmental organisation working for world peace, and, you know, peace had become a very big thing through my education within that society as well, that community, because the peace was at the forefront of everything. Without it, there was no evolving or progress. So I learned a lot about how peace was much more than the absence of peacelessness. I know it's a clichéd expression, but many things were taught to me about how to become a messenger for peace, if you like, or an example of peace for others that were struggling with the crazy things of the world then, as the world now.

Louis Cennamo:

It's very much to the fore of seeing how peace can very quickly evaporate in people's lives through the stress and the tensions of modern day life.

Malcolm Stern:

And are you still playing music these days, and in what way are you still doing music?

Louis Cennamo:

Yes, the musician can't retire. It's just not possible to retire because music is a huge expression of who they are, and I'm no different in that way. I've got various projects on, and a lot of it is music, ironically, from the 70s that's being re-released by record companies that are very retro-conscious and there is quite a big market for that as well. So our old Renaissance albums are re-released Steamhammer, box sets of Steamhammer and that have been released last year. And I had a great love for jazz as well, so I had a jazz group which was very active for several years in the Nauties onwards, and I've got that. I'm sort of putting that together as CDs as well with friends and record companies. So quite a lot of music happening and a lot of writing.

Malcolm Stern:

And you're writing your life story at the moment as well. You've got fascinating names that you've been involved with and engaged with, so are you planning that?

Louis Cennamo:

Yeah, it was you and our friend Nick. Basically that got me thinking about that, because when we had dinner one day on lunch I think we had you said all those people you've worked with you can't keep that all to yourself, just write it, write your story. So round about I was before the lockdown. I started writing and it just started pouring out, just like the music did when I was tuned in on that level. So all I really had to do was tune in and suddenly it was there, the book was there, basically. So I wrote and wrote and wrote and to eventually I stopped writing it about a year ago because all the music stuff was happening and record company wanted a lot of information from me because they had a lot of material that they couldn't identify. So with my elephants memory I was able to help them with that. So I couldn't do it all at once, I had to put it aside, but I'm sort of doing my best now to complete it all.

Malcolm Stern:

That's great. The series that we're running this podcast series that we're doing is called Slay your Dragons with Compassion, which comes from the book that I wrote about my daughter's suicide, but also the lessons I've learned, and it seems like what we go through in life is that we suffer and then, if we learn from our suffering, we find ways of actually transcending that and finding something deeper inside ourselves. Can you think of a dragon that you've slayed, something in you you've had to get past in order to come to peace with it?

Louis Cennamo:

Well, I wouldn't. Although I love your book, I don't actually think of it as something to be slayed in my experience because of my past etc. And it was interesting. The other day I was in a lovely Chinese restaurant in London and I asked the lady about the Chinese New Year. I wanted to wish her a new year and she said well, you can still do it, because it goes on for 15 days and beyond that really. And I realised that the dragon that you mentioned in my life, because of how my life had evolved, became something like how the Chinese see a dragon. We often see it in their festivals. It's this beautiful creature. It's a creature of luck, of play and amusement and revelation. It's just something to be loved and cherished.

Louis Cennamo:

So I've learned over the course of time and beyond time, to relate to that deep experience of sorrow that I experienced, for example, when my mum's Alzheimer's reached a point where she had to go into her home and it was down to me in the end and my sister to arrange it, and my dear, late sister had been feeling very, very upset by my mum's behaviour because she hadn't realised what Alzheimer's was. Back then, in the early 2000s, you know, not many people were aware of what it was. So, basically, we had to get mum into care and you know this was so painful. My eyes started playing up because it was so painful to see her and my sister suffering so much with this. And I was already, because I was playing with bands at the time still, and you know, I wasn't able to give them maybe the attention that was needed, although they wanted me to carry on with the music because they were so proud of my music. Basically, although mum had forgotten by this time, she was in a state of forgetfulness.

Louis Cennamo:

So, you know, I had to go to Moorfield's hospital in London and have them. They couldn't do much more than monitor it. They said well, look, you know, it's too we can't do. If we actually try to operate on it, you know, we'd be too risky. So I decided well, look, you know, suddenly the voice in my head sort of started to decrease, worrying, and I thought well, okay, I'm a healer, I can heal others, so now time to heal myself with this. So I did, and it took me about a year or so until they signed me off at Moorfield's and you know, then a new chapter began from there.

Malcolm Stern:

And do you have a meditation practice? Do you have a spiritual practice? Because a lot of my book is about practices we engage in. It's not like we suddenly become awakened aware. We find ways to and then we practice that so that we refine it and hone it. Have you got the practices?

Louis Cennamo:

that you do. Yeah, very much so, malcolm. The practice is vital really, because you know life, that we are living in this wonderful dream bubble of the Earth. It comes at you so fast and it's so easy then to without practice. Like you know, I had to practice to get proficient on the base, for example, and you have to practice basically to remain conscious when the world is screaming unconsciousness at you and to create that love. You know, the love doesn't need practice, but it's the ability to sustain the level of connection with our true self, you know, which is all love and all light.

Malcolm Stern:

Lovely. Well, it's really lovely to spend time with you on here as well, louie, and to hear some more of your story. I think it's great to have really sort of like have lived in a really rich way and had some amazing experiences, and then to find the place of peacefulness where we don't need the rock and roll lifestyle in the same way. But there's something else that has come into play.

Louis Cennamo:

Well, it's vital now. Yes, Once you have had an awakening experience, you really know it. When you fall asleep, if you like, when things get on top of you and you lose your bliss or your peace, as you said, peace is a big part of the equation, you know. Without it, there's no real quality of life, you know.

Malcolm Stern:

Well, we'll be looking out for your biography. You'll be very interested to see it when it emerges. And so much for joining me here on the Slay your Dragons podcast with online events, and look forward to seeing you soon. Well, we had dinner together last Friday. We look forward to seeing you soon as well.

Louis Cennamo:

Thanks so much well.

Malcolm Stern:

Good to see you. Thank you, Louie.

Louis Cennamo:

Cheers, cheers then Thank you.

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