The Goldendale Sentinel - Headlines & History since 1879

By Akasha Spino-Bybee
For The Sentinel 

Unique music ensemble plays



HUM ALONG WITH ONEHUM: Onehum, a musical group with cellist Tova Tillinghast, left, and guitarist Richard Tillinghast, comes to the Goldendale Library Monday, February 23 at 7pm.

What started off as one voice and one guitar has over the course of 20 years became a unified sound comprised of three musicians, three instruments and two voices-all combining into Onehum. Richard Tillinghast (vocals, guitarist), Tova Tillinghast (vocals, cellist) and Jason Russ (percussionist) have been brought together by their mutual appreciation for the Columbia River Gorge to spread the love of the Northwest lifestyle.

For Richard Tillinghast, his career as a musician began at the age of 19, when he played his first gig as an exchange student in London. "It was a good, wild time," says Tillinghast. "I've always loved music. There's something about the way it enables you to hear exactly what you're feeling." Tillinghast didn't always think of himself as a musician, despite his love for it. "I always thought I was the least talented in music out of all the art forms, but it's definitely the one I enjoy most."

As for Onehum, it all began in 2005, when two white water rafters (Tillinghast and Russ) were introduced by fate and began discussing their passions with one another: music and life on the Gorge. Once locals began hearing their music, they fell in love. Although, they weren't the only ones in love; Richard and Tova had fallen for each other the first time they met, and shortly after Tova became the band's cellist.

The band chose the name "Onehum" to represent the unity of their talent; it originated from the group's shared philosophy that world and everyone in it are all connected and function as one big, breathing organism. "We're trying to spread this vibe through our music," says Richard. From anyone else's perspective, their music is often described as a healing remedy for the soul.

"I believe that our music is sending a message that is telling our fans that they don't have to make a bunch of money to be happy. I hope our music reminds people that life is good, that you don't have to go out and win a rat race to be happy," says Tova. The group's goal is to inspire our younger generations to be more involved with their communities and to get in touch with the natural world.

Onehum has played all over the Gorge, and locals tend to get a kick out of their performances, enjoying the relatable comic expressions of lead singer Richard. "I'm kind of a goofball," he explains. "I sometimes find myself wondering why I am doing all of this performing. I don't consider myself a real performer. I take my songs seriously and try to express this when I perform, but when you have a bunch of people in front of you, you tend to get nervous. In my case, I turn into a bit of a comedian." Despite his own thoughts about his comedic outbursts, the crowd loves them, not mention the meaningful music.

With the release of their latest album, "The Door Is Open", on Dec. 15th, we should expect to see more of them, including Goldendale. Onehum is planning a concert at the library on Feb. 23 at 7 p.m. For more information, call the Goldendale Library at 773-4487. You can also purchase "The Door Is Open" by going online to

Please note: We have updated the electronic version of the Sentinel to reflect the corrected event schedule of Monday, February 23 at 7pm. Enjoy!


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