Drums have been around a long time. A LOOOONG time. As far back as 3000 BC, or maybe 6000 BC, depending on what Internet page you look on. Drums are powerful instruments. And everyone is capable of playing some sort of a drum. Have you ever heard of a violin circle, where violins are distributed and everyone just starts playing? I don’t think I would want to go to something like that. However, that’s what happens in a drum circle, with drums and other percussion instruments.
We experienced the power of the drum at DDPP, thanks to DJ Mizfit Toyz and her drumming inspired playlist! What do I know about drums and rhythm? I know a little bit. I took a class in drum circle rhythms last summer (yes, you can take a class in drum circles). Here is what I remember.
1. Anyone can create rhythm. You don’t even need an instrument. Clapping your hands is rhythm.
2. Rhythm doesn’t have to be loud and pounding. You can lightly drag your fingers across a surface and create a whispering rhythm.
3. There is no “wrong answer,” no “wrong rhythm.” Therefore, sometimes a drum circle can devolve into anarchy and that’s OK.
4. However, if you want a more pleasant, rewarding experience, listen to and watch what others are doing in the circle and play something that supports or replies to another rhythm. Have a conversation in rhythm.
Drums can be loud or soft, slow or fast. Drummers can be experts with years of practice, or anyone who can touch a surface and make a sound. Meg White of The White Stripes had only been playing drums for about six years when this came out:
So drums are for everybody. You know what else drums are for? DANCIN’, that’s what! Dancin’ and jumpin’ and sweatin’ and singin’! That’s what we were doing with DJ Mizfit Toyz’ pounding beats! Here’s the song that inspired the playlist:
That drum’s still beating, loud and clear! Thank you, DJ Mizfit Toyz, for bringin’ the beat of the drum!