It’s 2 p.m. Eastern, load-in time at Jazz Standard in Manhattan. Charnett Moffett, who’s playing the club tonight to celebrate the release of his latest album, Music From Our Soul (Motéma), walks in the service entrance wearing dark clothes and a floppy white hat much like the one Bob Denver sported on Gilligan’s Island. He’s lugging two basses, one electric and one acoustic upright, and he looks a little bedraggled following the commute from his home just outside of Philadelphia. As soon as he’s set the equipment down by the stage, he takes a seat and pulls two tuning forks out of his pocket. First he lightly taps them together. Then he places them by the openings of his ear canals for about 30 seconds, closing his eyes, inhaling deeply and concentrating on the pure sound resonating in his head.
“Vibrational healing,” he explains, visibly refreshed, once the moment has passed. “It comes from the balance of frequencies. The lower frequencies help you relax and the higher frequencies make you alert. If there’s no balance, there’s no life.”