• Streaming + Download

    Includes high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more. Paying supporters also get unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app.

      name your price



Waterslide Alchemy unfolds the story of two characters leading disparate lives; one of wealth and loneliness and the other founded in a primitive existence and spiritual richness. Sara embarks on her quest for meaning and leaves New York for West Africa where she finds Fatima and the Tuareg tribe. She travels with Fatima across the Sahara Desert, “climbing the wall of survival” and expanding her consciousness along the way. Challenged by the desert conditions, they eventually find a well and Sara is blessed by a transformative moment, riding the cultural waterslide towards wisdom.

I wrote this song after befriending Bombino, a band of Tuareg musicians from Agadez, Niger. Oumara Moctar, Kildjate Moussa Albadé, Kawissan Mohamed, Ibrahim Emoud and I met in New Hampshire when they were on tour in the States. We jammed together the first day and were immediately bonded through music and spirit. Over the next couple of years we became good friends and then Oumara asked me to join the band. We now tour around the world together, sharing the music, soul, and cultural alchemy of our story. I recorded this song with my other band, Billy Wylder at the Columbus Theater in Providence, RI in 2012. Since writing this song I have traveled to West Africa and performed with Bombino in his desert home with a community of Tuaregs dancing around us in their luminous tunics. And the grand caravan continues!

Yours truly,

Avi Salloway


Waterslide Alchemy By: Avi Salloway ©2012

Calabash gourds they’re filled with life
And balance on her head
Miles she’ll walk through Saharan heat
The water she will share

One sun shines down from the sky
On two different worlds below
One is marked by the blazing heat
The other by the snow
Sara she comes New Rochelle
The high-rise is her home
The finest schools and high class blues
Only darkness does she know

The sun burns red on the desert town
On Fatima’s dark chocolate skin
Her eyes they shine like northern lights
You can feel her heart within

Cultural waterslide alchemy
The women of the world
Share the fruit of your history
With every boy and girl

Lost in a world of lonely cash
Disillusioned from her heart
Sara she packed a bag of stash
Desperate to restart
She crossed the sea defiantly
Leaving the west behind
Landing in the Gambia
The light began to shine
She traveled with the Tuareg tribe
Across the Saharan dunes
Climbing the wall of survival
New York lived behind the moon
In the heat of the midday sun
She came to find the well
Sara she met Fatima’s eyes
All at once she could tell

Cultural waterslide alchemy
The women of the world
Share the fruit of your history
With every boy and girl

The rhythms of propensity
And the rivers of our lives
Unite the ones who subject themselves
To follow the light inside

Cultural waterslide alchemy
The women of the world
Share the fruit of your history
With every boy and girl


from We Make the Road By Walking, released November 26, 2015
Song title: "Waterslide Alchemy"
Artist: Billy Wylder (Avi Salloway)
Written by: Avi Salloway
Avi Salloway- singing, guitars
Michael Reese- drums, harmony singing
Paul Chase- electric bass




We Make the Road By Walking Portland, Maine

All songs are available as "donation only." All proceeds go to directly supporting the Seeds of Peace Educators Program for the Expressive Arts.

contact / help

Contact We Make the Road By Walking

Streaming and
Download help

Redeem code