Friday, December 27, 2013


       1993, when Sepultura was on the doorstep of the Chaos Ad recording, Roadrunner Records chose the song Territory for the single.  I immediately thought of the many wars over the Holy City of Jerusalem and suggested we do the video there.  The idea went over great and before I knew it, I was organizing the travel and video shoot.

Zyon was quite young and Max always wanted him with us on our travels, so we brought him with us.  It was strange in the airport, landing in Tel Aviv.  So much security, and people dressed like we had only seen on TV and in magazines.

Me and Zyon in the airport..
We travelled and shot footage all day long, sightseeing on the way.  We stopped at an overlook once and viewed the walled city of Jerusalem.  That year I was not allowed to enter the Holy City because it was very dangerous at the time for women to enter.  There was much political activity, so we decided to save it for another visit.  We also saw a giant menorah, and took photos near it. 

Me and Z in front of Jerusalem

Iggor and Zyon
We filmed with the Bedouins, the nomads who travel in camel caravans through the desert.  They live in big tents with their family.  The men made the women stay in a tent far from where we were filming.  I was allowed to go in there.  A baby was hanging in a hammock with an unappetizing amount of flies attacking his face.  The women were preparing hot tea for us. 

We made a trip to the top of the ancient city of Masada.  It was amazing to imagine what went on up there many years ago. The Dead Sea was our host next.  So funny seeing the band covered in Dead Sea mud and splashing in the water.

Iggor and Andreas at Dead Sea
When the days of filming were completed, Max and I stayed and hung on the beach in Tel Aviv with Zyon.  It was the warmest, clearest water I had ever seen.  The glorious Mediterranean soothed and relaxed us.  Maybe Jesus or the Apostles had sat where we relaxed…the view was Heavenly! 

At the Beach

            Merry Christmas!  May God bless the Tribe!!

Class dismissed….

Friday, December 20, 2013


December is not meant to be filled with shock and sorrow.  In December,  2004, our home was going through a variety of emotions.  We had happiness spewing out with our little Moses in our lives.  My daughter and tour manager at the time, Christina, had just come off the road with Moses in tow, on our tour.  We lost our first grandchild in childbirth 10 years before and to have Moses was a real blessing.  Before his birth, when Christina was pregnant, Max and Coyote from Eyesburn recorded the song Moses, in Belgrade.  We were awaiting the baby's arrival and hence the lyrics..Moses,, Moses, where are you….


Max was bringing down the house with some trouble in his life…it was getting to weigh heavily on us.  Personal demons  which are revealed in his autobiography.  It was casting a weight on us that we were forced to reason with.  There was no reason however and the stress affected our family daily.  It was getting difficult for me to harness it and hide from outsiders.


We went in the studio in Mesa, Arizona, called the Salt Mine and brought the other Soulfly-ers in to begin to lay down the tracks.  Music wraps up quite fast..if you are a REAL artist…and in no time it was lyric-laying time, the final coat of frosting on the music.


It was morning, December 8 and I was getting ready to head to the studio for the day's session.  The ring of the phone grabbed my attention and was near me so I answered on my way out the door.  My good friend from Ohio, Brandon Combs cheered me up.  He asked if I could get him into Damageplan that night; they were played Al Rosa's, in Ohio.  "Of course,"  I replied.  "Just look for Cat and tell him you are our friend."  Smooth, no bumps in the road.  I hung up and left.

Night time…I was watching a movie and fell asleep on the couch when the phone rang.  It was around 10:30pm, local time.  Screaming, sirens, mayhem woke me, and then Brandon's voice.  "They're all dead!  They're all dead!!!"  Horrified, I couldn't grasp wtf was happening.  A policeman grabbed Brandon's phone and recounted the night.  He told me Brandon was in the front when the gunman jumped on the stages and Brandon had jumped on the stage to divert him and the off duty officer was able to make the shot.  I couldn't imagine anything like they were shouting. It left us in a daze, astounded, shock.

Grief set in and there were no words in the studio the next day.  Nothing like this had happened before.  Too many questions with no answers, coupled with anxiety, left everyone spinning in silence.


Home at night, I crashed watching a movie again.  10:30pm, I woke up.  I was startled to see Danny Marianino and our old friend, Fattytizer walk in the door.  What was happening?


Max came to me and said, "Moses has died."  "No, impossible!  They just flew home a couple days ago!"  Barely awake, this news was not registering with me.


The phone rang and the second I heard Christina's voice, I knew the unbelievable was true. My mind screamed inside!!  Little Moses had gone to see Machinehead earlier that day.  They even made a video of him there!  After the show,a very happy group of Headbangers went to Christina's apartment and cranked some Manu Chow and ate some traditional Serbian munchies.  Moses woke up and was dancing in his swing.  The world was just fine.

Moses partying at 2:00am, Dec. 10, 2004
3:00am, all to bed; party over.  5:00am, Christina gets up and Moses is sleeping nestled next to her.  6:00am, she wakes up, and he was gone.  Just like that….the darkness swept in our lives like a black fog, plugging our pores, our senses.

The studio became a dot on my horizon.  NO importance now; I left with Richie and flew to Serbia.  Max stayed and the lyrics changed their hue.  This was real life; not just words.  The Dark Ages bubbled and churned until it could no more.  The strength to get out of bed in the morning sucked most of our energy from the day and left us hollow.  Cement boots on our feet every morning…it was an unbearable time.

Returning to America was never so hard.  Taking misery in my purse and in my soul; it seemed to be in every crack surrounding me like a fog.  This would leave a mark…it was the birth of Dark Ages.

RIP Moses

Class dismissed…..

Friday, December 13, 2013

Gloria Cavalera's 10 Commandments of Metal

Gloria Cavalera's 10 Commandments of Metal

I was slinking through the pit one day when I saw a glimmer in the distance, a shiny, metal object.  My curiosity drew me to it!  I thought it was stone but when I came upon it, it was definitely Metal!  The strange object heated in my hand and I could see words blazing upon it!  When the smoke and sparks cleared, I could read it clearly.


1.  Thou shall bang thy head!!

2.  Thou shall pick up your fallen brothers and sisters in the pit!

3.  Thou shall not mosh in the pit bare-foot or naked!


4.  Thou shall not molest crowd surfers!

5.  Thou shall support local Metal and not steal music, for it is someone else's creation!


6.  Thou shall not judge others!

7.  Thou shall not segregate Metal into genres and breed hate or favoritism of a particular genre!  They are all Metal!

8.  Thou shall honor thy Mother and Father, even if they do not understand you! 

9.  Thou shall leave violence out of your life.  Air guitar, stage diving, crowd surfing, circle pits, and walls of death are free will and acceptable! Be aware of your neighbors and include them in your activity!


10.  Thou shall be comforted by Metal, for we are truly free!

Class Dismissed...

Friday, December 6, 2013

...Tribal Travelogue……Part 4 of 4 ...

Another early morning, 7:30 a.m. and we were up for preparation of the recording.  We arrived again at the mango tree and the band was led back to the house where they did the ritual painting.  Today would be the Wanaridobe, or Godfather's chant.  Each member received the customary bracelets and necklace, but this time the entire body was painted and the face as well.  Each person was painted differently.  I also received a bit of face paint, I couldn't resist.  

A dance with the Indians joining hands with the band was conducted, this time in the hot sun, not under the mango trees.  This was done for visual purpose only.  

The recording is next; and it did not take as much time as before.  Ross believed at this time he had compiled enough on tape. 

Afterwards the band played Kaiowas to the Indians, honoring their request to hear Sepultura.  When they finished, the Indians chant "dure," which means one more, or encore.  They honorably played it one more time, with Max adding some screams.

Sepultura then spoke with some of the musicians in a sit down interview.  Sepultura asked the tribe members about their music and were asked questions back , about their tattoos, long hair and general appearance. 

Our video director, during all of this, went up in an airplane, removed the door, and got some great aerial footage.  The rest of us went back to the schoolhouse to pack and have lunch.  

me tatting kid

Me with the badass Xavantes dude, my friend
When all was done, we returned to the mango trees for one last ceremony.  Once again, they filed past us saying their goodbyes, and presenting us with wonderful gifts of jewelry, purses, headgear, and feathers.  Our emotions soared, we felt we had come so close to these wonderful people.

Max, Me, Andreas, Severia and tribe.
I asked Angela why some of the people had their heads shaved and learned that when a family member dies, the entire family shaves their head as a show of mourning.  It seems that the first recognized death of cancer had occurred.  The white man's sickness have been creeping in, little by little, since their first contact 50 years ago.  

We had learned so much from these simple people.  How little they have and so much we have.  To do a simple task like go to a doctor took a 250 mile walk!

Airplane landing strip

Max and Me on the plane
As we flew through time, back to our present lives, we could only hope that this little community will survive against all odds this world has stacked up against them, and we prayed to return again. 
at the hotel in GoiĆ¢nia, Brasil, about to fly home.

Class Dismissed...

Friday, November 29, 2013

...Tribal Travelogue……Part 3 of 4 ...

A rooster's crowing and a gong-like noise were our alarms in the morning.  I found out later they were hitting a large railroad tie that was suspended to a tree.

We applied our morning toiletries: a very thick layer of insect repellent, and on top of it, sun-screen.  Though it was early, the insects and sun were relentless. 

With the new day, so came hunger and thirst.  We marveled that the Indians never seemed to drink, eat, or sleep, as we do.  We saw them eat an occasional mango, but never more than that. 

With no supplies still, I was overjoyed I could still have my morning coffee.  Such little luxuries.  I must admit, though, we were getting a bit nervous without a sign that our airplane was approaching, but continued with the day’s activities as if we had no worries. 

The band was led to a hut where they were given the traditional bamboo wrist and ankle bands, the rope and feather necklace, and the rope belt.  Lastly the paint was applied. 

The paint from the healing ceremony was red paint from the waist to neck, with three stripes down each arm and on each side of the chest, and also red paint on each thigh, like a band.  Black paint was applied from the ankle to the knee.  Feathers were then arranged in their hair to provide the finishing touches.  


  During the painting ceremony, as luck would have it, our plane with supplies arrived.  Finally!  Along with our food and water, it carried our most important gear - our recording equipment.  The gear was set up under the three mango trees we visited so often.  The Indians said the acoustics were great, and the large trees provided us with sanctuary from the sun. 

A short test song was done this time.  Sepultura sat in the center of the circle, Max and Andreas on acoustic guitars, Paulo and Igor on drums.  Ross Robinson, our producer, directed.  He was "connected," he told us. 

Some of the men used various percussion instruments - handmade gourd maracas.  They all stamped their right foot in time to their chanting, which grew louder and louder, sometimes diminishing to almost a whisper. 

Once, the children surrounded me, admired my tattoos and writing, and touched my green hair.  I was joined by a tribe elder and shared my Marlboros.  He was splendid, with the red paint on his forehead and both ears pierced. 

Me with the tribe kids
 They wear a piece of wood which is inserted through a very large hole in their ear.  In September, they held their piercing ceremony.  When a boy turns 14, he is to become a man.  They stand in the river for two days to soften their skin, coming out only to eat and sleep.  A slender piece of wood is inserted through their ears.  The older and wiser they get, the large the piece of wood. 

The women and children watched the dance, only the men participated this day.  I learned that when a man marries, his father chooses his bride.  They are also allowed more than one wife. 

We soon stopped for a break, with the hot sun beating on us.  We took a lunch of potatoes, rice and chicken, and the enjoyed the luxury of a short rest.  The flies and other insects attacked us as we tried to sleep. 

Around 4:30 P.M., the band did a very impressive photo shoot with Michael Grecco manning the cameras.  It took place in an old abandoned building nearby.  When this was completed, we returned to the recording site. 

The Indian performed various chants to decide which chant would be most suited to accompany Sepultura.  The Datsi Wawere chant was selected and the test recording done.  It was now dusk, we had a break for dinner and returned for an hour.  

  We returned and the final take was done.  The tribe asked for Sepultura to perform, but we explained that Sepultura plays with amplifiers and much more gear.  They understood and returned to their late night activities. 

The band, Roadrunner reps, Ross, myself, Cipasse, Severia and the chief met at the school house for a meeting that went on until midnight.  It was here that we went into detail about the intent and usage of the photos and video.  The tribe was extremely concerned about how we will project their image to the world.  It was a great meeting, with Sepultura also expressing their concerns.  They, too, have suffered prejudice because of their music, tattoos and overall appearance.  We ended with mutual respect and heart felt admiration for each other.