We will explore local rhythms and songs from Ghana’s Ga, Ashanti and Ewe tribes as well as rhythms from Burkina Faso, Guinea, Mali and Senegal.
Instruments used will include djembe, kpalago, duns, talking drum, bells, shakers and many more.
An emphasis will be placed on the background and cultural significance of each specific rhythm, when it is traditionally played and why. Master Drummer Tuza will co-ordinate the teaching curriculum.
In 2011 Ekomé welcomes back Adamane and Madou Keita from Burkina Faso. These two Griot brothers have 25 generations of musical ancestry in their blood and will once again bring their djembe, dun, balaphon and gone repertoire to Ghana for your learning and listening pleasure.
Beginners will be taught the basic techniques used to get the best sounds out of the djembe and other local percussive instruments. You will be introduced to co-ordination exercises to stimulate dexterity and develop control over your hand movements so you can start playing some basic rhythms from the word go. The roles of the bell and shaker will also be discussed.
Intermediate Classes will look at more complex rhythms in different time signatures and will play at faster tempos. Traditional song arrangements will be looked at with explanations of breaks, signals and calls, and how the various parts interlock.
Advanced students will get the chance to work on soloing techniques with a focus on improvisation, leading the music, and the interaction between the drum and the dance.
Everyone will learn to respect the time and develop a stronger internal pulse and feel for the circular nature of the music. An understanding of the various bell parts will underpin how we approach the music. During the course of the tour everyone will get the chance to jam with local musicians and take part in some wonderful ceremonies, drumming alongside their teachers.
Drums will be made available for purchase before the start of class. Students are required to have one djembe and one kpalago for the commencement of classes.
We offer a range of drums from the finest local drum-maker, Mr Laryea. Prices start at US$70.