invited me to drum to accompany the Denver Women's Chorus
concert last Saturday. After three rehearsals, I joined three other drummers for the encore, Siyahamba
I've drummed several times before, but it's usually been at fire circles with ten or more other drummers. The fire circle context is very forgiving to inexperienced drummers: your drum's voice is fairly anonymous, you can drop in and out as you catch and lose the beat, and the rhythms tend to evolve dynamically with no goal more complicated than inspiring beautiful people dancing on their own. For this performance, each drum's voice was important, all the drums had to keep together, and the rhythm had to stick with the choral voice.
I played a simple beat sequence on hoop drum. I have more experience and comfort with that drum and know that if I tried to adorn my playing I'd lose track of the core. I think we did quite well; we received several compliments. I even gave my card to a choir member who said "It'd be fun to paint you." I first assumed she meant body paint, to which I was about to respond that I am deficient in paintable skin. I then realized she meant "sit for a painting," which is fun in a very different way.
On Tuesday, I made it to drumming at Full Moon Books
for the first time. For a year now, I've gotten regular email announcements informing me that they host drumming every Tuesday at 7:30. I had an atrocious attendance record at bi-weekly Tuesday role playing sessions last year. On the other Tuesdays, I either lacked the time, presence of mind, or energy to pack drums in the car on Tuesday mornings. But in honor of Shadow Boxing Day and the fact that I'd already drummed in a performance, I decided it was time to just do it.
Apparently several other people picked this Tuesday to visit this drum circle for the first time or after a long lapse. The regulars said it was a great session and I got a chance to experiment with djembe positions and attempted to play along with Summertime on a flute.
I hereby set the intention of regularly attending drumming on Tuesdays. With practice I can be a good drummer. Now I just need a drum icon so I can report my progress.