U+ME: New Sound Bath Studio Opens in Downtown E.C.
Kathleen Mason and Brad Keith opened UME to allow for pure relaxation
Ume ("YOU-ME") is the Japanese word for plum blossom. Co-Owner Kathleen Mason chose the name for the new downtown space, noting the five petals of the blossom echo the five senses and the five elements that are evident in the new immersive, multi-sensory space in downtown Eau Claire.
Currently, Mason is offering a sound bath experience weekly, a dimly lit room, starlit, with generous bean bags, pillows, and blankets, to swath those taking in the vibrations, tones, and auditory experience of her performance playing crystal bowls, bells, and drums. “A feeling or sense of being in a cocoon or a womb. One of security, warmth, love, sharing, community,” she explained.
"(Sound baths create) a feeling or sense of being in a cocoon or a womb. One of security, warmth, love, sharing, community."
co-owner of Ume Studios
Kathleen and partner Brad Keith share a lifetime love of sound and music. Kathleen’s mother played the church organ and her father curated mix tapes for the family’s cross-country road trips. Whereas Keith, a Milwaukee native, grew up listening to Dylan and his love of live music soared after attending a John Prine concert in the winter of 1975.
Together, they hope the space will continue to evolve with musicians they are pulling in from around the state and beyond as well as other collaborations with local artists and healing arts practitioners: “The space will attract the people who resonate on the same frequency. Brave, kind, creative, curious, compassionate, open-minded individuals who are looking for a place to connect and find community.”
Upcoming events include Chris Acker from New Orleans with Ben Lester on pedal steel and Hemma to open on March 20th at 7pm, co-hosted with Farewell Transmissions, and John Raymond, jazz trumpet player, and former UWEC alumni, with S. Carey, Jeremy Boettcher and Ben Lester on May 13th at 7pm. Also, look out for the Belly Monster three-day healing retreat at the end of April with Jenny Korotko and Amy Hahn.
To learn more about UME Studio, you can go to umestudio.org.