Brian Campbell Shares His Only Breath With The Universe

The folksinger and song-poet takes a transcendental trip through time and space.

Brian Campbell embraces the ethereal nature of existence in his meditative new single and video Only Breath — showcasing today on Tinnitist.

Albert Einstein once summarized his best understanding of the universe’s inner mechanism as “spooky action, at a distance.” On Only Breath, Montreal singer and song-poet Campbell is taking audiences on a transcendental field trip, serving as fearless inner sherpa to the great spooky beyond.

Only Breath is hypnotic in its stirring intensity and deep contemplative message. Over collaborator Martin Bennett’s electronic percussion, bass and flute instrumental, Campbell delivers an unforced sermon on the principles of mystical humility. Lyrically, he proposes a radical worldview, one that challenges the listener to see past all worldly distinctions and separations. It’s a masterclass in conscious observation, and accessible to new and seasoned seekers alike.

The lyrics, adapted from a poem by Rumi as translated by Coleman Barks and used with the latter’s permission, begin with the eschewing of religious identities, cultural trappings, geographical identities, temporal identities and spiritual beliefs to reveal one great positive — the irreducible essence of what it is to be human:

Photo by Sharon Cheema.

“Neither Christian, nor Jew, nor Muslim,
Nor Hindu, Buddhist, Sufi, or Zen
Not any religion or cultural system
I’m not from the East or the West,
Nor out of the ocean nor up from the ground…
I do not exist, nor belong to this world or the next
I did not descend for Adam or Eve, or any origin story
My place is the placeless, a trace of the traceless,
Neither body nor soul…
I belong to the beloved, have seen the two worlds as one,
And that one call to and know,
The first, the last, the outer, the inner,
Only that breath breathing.”

Only Breath is the latest release from Campbell found on his EP A Crystal Rim. He first found his musical calling during a Spanish immersion course in Guatemala, where he immersed himself in Latin American poetic songwriting and studied classical guitar. He’s since become a fixture in Quebec’s folk music scene, becoming a sought-after stage performer, releasing two albums and two EPs of original music, along with 11 singles.

Watch the video for Only Breath above, listen to A Crystal Rim below, and keep up with Brian Campbell on his website, Twitter and Facebook.


Photo by Thomas Colin.