I am heading back to California on April 18th from Bangkok, Thailand and will be teaching there until June 1, 2017. If you are coming to town or would like to set up a drumming vacation with me please contact me and let’s get together. It’s a great time to be there !
Feeling spontaneous? Let’s drum! I highly recommend a one day drumming intensive. It’s two one and a half hour classes with an hour break in between. If you are highly motivated we can put together a two or three day package )or more!) as well.
Here is a very short demo of Grooves For Gigs:
I have a private studio in Northern California just over the Golden Gate Bridge. California is very fun, incredibly diverse and an interesting place to stay, visit and explore as well. I can put you in touch with places to stay, eat and visit that are very inexpensive.
Northern California has so much to see and do. Its easy to get around and it is a friendly easy place to be and see.
If you have ever wanted to learn to play conga drums and / or djembe and happen to be passing through Northern California, now is the time to meet with me for a drumming intensive.
All drumming levels are welcome. No drum is needed. I have a studio filled with all kinds of drums, from cajon , bongos and congas to djembe and dunun as well.
If you already know how to play and want to brush up on your skills, add to your reptoire and have more fun playing drums this is the class for you. We can start right where you are at now as an advanced intermediate or beginner. I am here to patiently give and I am happy to share whatever I know.
I offer traditional West African, Afro Cuban and other hand drum based drumming classes as well as “Grooves For Gigs”, “Solo Evolution”, percussion for pop music and non-traditional or “hybrid-fusion” classes.
We can get you set up to play with friends, in a band, at a drum circle, for performances, with a DJ, in a dance class or by yourself. Whatever your heart desires! We can work one -on- one or you can bring others with you as well for a small group class if you would like your friends to join in as well.
My speciality is helping others to zero in on their own creative rhythms and abilities and expand their horizons with interesting new information and techniques. We will focus in on ways to help you right now with adjustments to your technique and position that may seem small at first but can offer huge results in comfort, gaining speed and deepening your groove.
The drum can take you to amazing places. It is a powerful tool for healing and transformation as well.
Over the years I have developed specific ways to help others learn to play step by step in fun and easy ways.
I will help you get to wherever you need to be. We will cover and share information, rhythms, techniques and drumming music that is relevant to your needs as a person and player. Amateur or professional it does not matter.
What works for you and will help you to perform, play and have more fun when you drum?
Drumming is about having fun and this is what we will do! My intension is to share, inspire and show you the many possible routes and roads of rhythm!
Classes are fun, interesting and challenging. I will give you exercises to increase your speed, develop groove and funk and expand your horizons in the percussion world.
I also offer private and specific drumming class-intensives where we design a specific course of daily classes (2-3 classes per day) custom fit to meet your needs as a percussionist.
We will first discuss what you want, need and what will help you to learn and grow while you study drumming with me and others before , during and after as well. When you leave you will have a powerful set of tools to take where ever you go and play! The skill sets we develop in a short time will last you forever!
We also will discuss and modify my teaching methodologies to fit what works best for your learning skill set that you arrive with.
Many teachers only can only teach their own particular or personal way.
With me you will have different options on how you choose to learn.
This is because of the following. Some people like to learn by seeing, others by hearing, others by feeling and others by math or writing things out. We have all methods available. I do know this, for the most part if you can say it you can play it.
The class fee if per hour so we can add or subtract or add more classes and truing time as we feel are needed.
A drumming intensive or private lessons is a prefect way to jump start your learning or to make and break new grounds in your drumming. I guarantee results with the drumming intensive courses of 1-7 days or more.
Here is an example of one possible approach for those wanting to study in a traditional route.
Djembe Drumming Intensive Mali Rhythms Level 1 and 2:
N’gris, Maraka, Djansa, Madan, Tansole, Mendiani, Soli, Sogonikum, Wolosodon-Djondon, Didadee, Sunu.
Djembe Drumming Guinea Rhythms and Solo Techniques level 1, 2 and 3:
Kuku, Kassa, Senafoli, Balankulanjan, Makru, Yankadi, Soli Rapide, Kakilambe, Soko, Tiriba, Dununba, Kordejuga, Kawa, Sofa, Guinea Lamban.
Rumba family: Yambu, Guaguanco, Rumba Columbia, Guarapachenguero
Band Rhythms: Songo, Timba, Tumbao, Bota, 6/8
Festival: Comparsa and Mozambique
Bembe: 6/8 and 4/4
Traditional Afro Cuban and non traditional playing styles
Gooves For Gigs
Have you ever wondered what to play on different types or genres of music? Play in a band or with friends and get stuck playing the same hand patterns for everything? In the Grooves for Gigs course we go through a variety of different hand patterns for every style of music possible from Country and Western to soul, pop and funk. We will look at and play parts that and groove on the hand drums of your choice.
Classes focus on technique, learning to speak on your drum and how to solo. We will get every aspect of your playing improved and you will be playing at 100% of your capacity in no time at all! We go through all the individual drum and djembe parts, intros, breaks, calls and dunun parts as well.
We will go at your own pace and there is very little pressure. I offer a truly unique learning experience!
I am a patient and a gifted instructor and I have been doing this for over 35 years. You will improve your skills greatly in a very short time.
I have dedicated my life to the study and development of percussion from the african roots.
I have lived, traveled and studied extensively multiple times in Cuba, Brazil, India, Puerto rico, Guinea and Mali as well as studied with Master percussionists in USA. I was one of two non-african lead drummers in Grand Master Bolokada Conde’s troupe, “Les Percussion Du Melenke” in Bay Area of Northern California where over the years I also studied with many other percussion masts and legends as well.
Over the last 40 years, I have dedicated and devoted my life to the pursuit of learning, teaching and performing the fine arts of percussion and hand based drumming.
My specialties include djembe, dunun, bongo, conga and shekere playing and building .
I have extensively studied West African drumming from Guinea, Mali and Senegal as well as Afro Cuban, Haitian, Brazilian and Congolese drumming styles in the past.
I was also a recording studio owner, recording artist and studio percussionist in the 80’s-90’s and worked with many rock and roll legends including members of the Grateful Dead, Santana, Todd Rundgren, The Tubes and many others as well. My own recordings can be found on my home page at the top of the page as well.
Although I am not a drum master, I am a master student and believe none of us ever stop learning as drumming and rhythm is constantly evolving.
There is always something to learn from everyone and everything. Nature can teach us, other drummers can teach us. There is always something that can show us if we remain open minded and humble.
“Anke Dje Anke Be” means “come to gather in peace “. The drum brings us all together as one! I like to keep this in mid as many people are mislead into believing the drum is all about solo and being “the man” or being “the woman”. However, for me, It’s about the village. The team work, coming together and unification.
Drumming is for everyone. You do not need to be young or old and it does not matter your sex, race or anything else. You can do it!
The drum does not see any differences between people. Drumming is indeed music. Music and drumming is for all. It belongs to no one person.
It does not matter how old you are , or if you have any previous music or rhythm skills or practice. You can start any time you like!
Djembe means unity. The drum is a powerful healing tool for bringing us all together in the spirit of community and sharing. It is from a proud long culture and tradition and comes from a unique musical orchestrated heritage that includes dance, song and intention.
Lets learn more together and share! The drum is a musical instrument with a long and proud history from a great tradition and the people of West Africa.
Music is a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosophy.
Music is the electrical soil in which the spirit lives, thinks and invents.
-Ludwig van Beethoven
Please write me here or email@example.com for more information, booking suggestions for places to stay and class prices and appointments.
Drum circle djembe solos: