album cover of LEVEL 1 Peace of Mind by American Zen

America’s First Buddhist Rock Band.

Join the journey to Nirvana.

American Zen is a 4-piece rock band featuring The Hippy Coyote on vocals, flute, and acoustic guitar.  He performed his first rock’n’roll gig as an electric guitarist (Fender Mustang) in 1966 at the age of 12.

During the early 1970s Coyote hitchhiked across Canada and the United States.  He experienced many lifestyles and met many other travelers and “Conscientious Objectors,” and fellow scientists.  During those two years in Newfoundland he learned to fish, hunt, trap and live in the cold wilderness.  He saw the ‘northern lights’ in the arctic circle and ate a lot of seal…

THE RICH power trio featuring The Hippy Coyote
The Rich were the best power trio band in Los Angeles in 1980.

Unable to earn a living performing in San Diego during the early 1970s, Coyote became a recording engineer and recorded his own first completed album in 1975.  This psychedelic rock album features other musicians who have been successful over the decades.  Shaolin Records is hoping to release this album in 2019.

In 1978 Coyote moved to Los Angeles from San Diego, California.  He moved in with the guitarist and drummer into a house in barrio of Venice, California.  They were THE RICH.  A power pop trio featuring Coyote on Rickenbacker bass and lead vocals.

In 1984 Coyote wrote the rock opera, COYOTE IN A GRAVEYARD.  This romance in a looney-bin was heralded by Stephen Spielberg and Michael J. Fox.  New World Pictures optioned the screenplay and Coyote was in the movie business.  He graduated the UCLA Motion Picture Program in 1987 while working for MTV, and making music videos and commercials.

In 1991 we start the American Zen story.  Coyote fell in love with a Shaolin Records intern.  They decided to have a baby and move to Utah… This is the LEVEL 1 = PEACE OF MIND album story.  This rock opera has all the songs in the order they were written.  Coyote, being a California long-hair hippie Buddhist… was not received well by the Mormons.  LEVEL 1 = PEACE OF MIND tells the story of raising a newborn, dealing with prejudice, having trouble with employment, and being a Mr. Mom.

Get the album, LEVEL 1 = Peace of Mind by American Zen.  Join the journey as Coyote battles for independence, freedom, creativity, and self-expression… while changing diapers.

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Shaolin Records
American Zen


About This Site

American Zen is four Southern California rockers performing and recording the songs by The Hippy Coyote.

LEVEL 1 = Peace of Mind is the first album by American Zen.  This album starts the Buddhist Journey of American Zen with Coyote relocating his family to Salt Lake City, Utah.  So this Buddhist journey includes child raising, marriage, and surviving in a land where religion is a weapon.

Richard Del Connor produces albums by American Zen for Shaolin Records.