Byron Metcalf, Ph.D.
Byron is a transpersonal guide and educator, shamanic practitioner, researcher, and professional musician. Byron holds a Ph.D. in transpersonal psychology, a master’s degree in counseling psychology, and is a certified graduate of Grof Transpersonal Training and Eupsychia Institute’s Psycho-Spiritual Integration programs. Byron has trained, studied, and worked with shamans, healers, and psycho-spiritual teachers from many parts of the world including Stan Grof, Jack Kornfield, Hameed Ali, John Davis, Ph.D., Angeles Arrien, Ph.D., Jose and Lena Stevens, Sandra Ingerman, and Don Americo Yabar. For nearly three decades, Byron has been intensely involved in consciousness research and spiritual development, specializing in the transformative potential of alternative states of consciousness. As a drummer, percussionist and recording engineer, Byron produces for deep inner exploration, breathwork, shamanic journeywork, body-oriented therapies, various meditation practices and the healing arts.
Byron has conducted two formal research studies examining the healing potential of non-ordinary states of consciousness. "Examining the Effects of Holotropic Breathwork in the Treatment of Addictions” (1995) has been cited in several professional journal articles and Byron presented the results of this study at addiction conferences throughout the United States. He also served as a training consultant to various treatment centers and clinics educating on the efficacy of utilizing transpersonal approaches in addiction treatment, and served as a graduate advisor for Prescott College’s counseling psychology master’s degree program for over 10 years. Byron’s research study, "Breathwork as a Shamanic Strategy” (1999), was an original component of Byron’s doctoral research that examined the effects of breathwork within a shamanic framework. Among several important outcome factors, the study confirmed the fundamental role that "intention" plays when working in non-ordinary states. Byron's doctoral research eventually became the catalyzing force behind the development of HoloShamanic Strategies, LLC. Both studies were published in the Inner Door, the official publication of the Association for Holotropic Breathwork International (AHBI).
Byron began developing the theoretical framework for HoloShamanic Integration™ in the late 1980s in response to clients’ requests for a deeper and expanded understanding of who they profoundly are, and to support their learning to function in the practical world from that deeper place. In 1999, his doctoral dissertation in transpersonal psychology (Shamanic Perspectives in Transpersonal Psychotherapy) focused on the core principles and dynamics of what has since evolved into HoloShamanic Integration™ and "The Shaman's Heart Program: The Path of Authentic Power, Purpose & Presence" (Monroe Products, 2008).
In 2006 Byron retired from his professional counseling practice of over 20 years in order to devote his full energies to HoloShamanic Strategies, LLC, and its training program development, and also to allow more time in his recording studio.
Byron’s highly successful music business career spans 5 decades and covers a wide variety of musical styles and genres. A professional drummer at age 15, Byron has played on several gold and platinum albums (most notably Kenny Rogers’ album "The Gambler”). He has performed at top concert venues including Carnegie Hall, The Greek Theater, The LA Forum, Universal Amphitheater, The Grand Ole Opry, and Wembley Arena (London), as well as headliner showrooms in Las Vegas, Reno, and Lake Tahoe. Byron also performed on The Tonight Show, The Grammy Awards, The American Music Awards, CMA Awards, ACM Awards, Fantasy Island, Hee Haw, Good Ole Nashville Music, and many others. Beginning in 1987, Byron focused his musical talents toward the healing arts, creating musical sequences for Holotropic Breathwork workshops, and facilitating men’s workshops and shamanic drumming circles and ceremonies.
Since 1997, Byron has been producing solo CD projects and collaborating with other artists including Steve Roach, Mark Seelig, Dashmesh Khalsa, Ron Oates, and several other musical guests. Byron's 1998 solo release "Helpers, Guides & Allies” continues to receive enthusiastic reviews in the shamanic, trance dance, and therapeutic communities, and was rated #4 in Backroads Music's 1998 Best of Year Selections in the World Music category. Byron collaborated with award winning recording artist and sonic innovator Steve Roach on the critically acclaimed 2-disc epic "The Serpent’s Lair”(Projekt Records, 2000). "Not Without Risk” (Dr Bam’s Music, 2001) was Byron's second solo project followed by "Wachuma’s Wave” (Spotted Peccary, 2003), a collaboration with German artist Mark Seelig (with Steve Roach), which was chosen by Backroads Music as the #1 Release of 2003 in all categories.
In 2005, Byron teamed up with Monroe Products to produce a Metamusic® version of Byron’s critically acclaimed "The Shaman’s Heart” (with Steve Roach) which includes Monroe’s Hemi-Sync®technology embedded in the music tracks. "The Shaman’s Heart with Hemi-Sync" won the 2006 Visionary Award for "Best Innerspace/Meditational/Healing CD". Monroe Products also released a Metamusic version of "Not Without Risk” (re-sequenced and re-titled as "Spirit Gathering”) in late 2006, and a Metamusic version of "Wachuma's Wave" (re-titled as "Deep Time Dreaming") in 2007. More recent CD releases include "A Warning From the Elders” (Dr Bam’s Music, 2007), "Nada Terma” with Mark Seelig & Steve Roach (Projekt, 2008) "Dream Tracker” with Dashmesh Khalsa & Steve Roach (Dr Bam’s Music, 2010), and "The Shaman’s Heart II” featuring Steve Roach (Projekt, 2011), "Medicine Work” with Rob Thomas of "Inlakesh” (Dr Bam’s Music, 2013), and "Intention” with Mark Seelig (Prokekt, 2014).
As workshop, retreat and ceremonial leader with over 25 years of experience, Byron has facilitated personal growth and healing workshops featuring Holotropic and HoloShamanic Breathwork and The Shaman’s Heart Program/Training throughout the US. Byron has also been a featured presenter at seminars and conferences on the healing potential of non-ordinary states of consciousness, music, sound and sound technologies.
Byron lives in the high-desert mountains of Prescott Valley, Arizona and is the founding director of HoloShamanic Strategies, LLC, offering spiritual and shamanic counseling/healing services and experiential learning programs.