Michael Franti performs at Power to the Peaceful (PTTP) 2008 Festival in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, California. He plays with Manas on the djembe for the song "Is Love Enough?"
A djembe (pronounced /ˈdʒɛmbeɪ/ 'JEM-bay') is a hand drum which is covered in skin and shaped like a goblet. It is large, round, and played with bare hands.
The drums purpose is to bring people together. In Mali, the Bamana people say the name of the drum is derived from the expression "Anke dje, anke be." Translated into English, this means to "everyone gather together"
Also known as jembe, jenbe, djimbe, jymbe, yembe, or jimbay, or sanbanyi in Susu.
Kids make the best African drumming students. They learn faster than most adults. They're better able to comprehend complex polyrhythms and how they swing. They convey their understanding to audiences joyfully. They progress faster than most adults, achieving a professional level sooner than you'd expect.
By Zoë Kessler, BA, B.Ed. (Adult Education)
It was day one of the 8-week drumming course for at-risk youth.
I’d taught lots of kids before, but never “at-risk” kids. They were aged 9-11 years, mostly boys, and a few girls, in an after-school class.
I walked into the classroom, and the whole room was vibrating.
It reminded me of the shimmering of hot air above asphalt, only faster — and we hadn’t even started drumming.
With the exception of vocal music —i.e. when music becomes the vehicle for words— the use of drums for the transmission of linguistic messages appears to be the only situation in which the fusion of language and music takes place. In Subsaharan Africa drum languages rely “on the emission of sound signals which are neither words nor substitutes for a graphic code” (Cloarc-Heiss 1997: 136). This mode of communication is widely promoted by the fact that a large number of languages happen to be tonal in nature.
WorldBeat Center offers classes in African drumming, as well as Afro-Cuban, Japanese and more geocentric beat instruction for the whole community.
A djembe (pronounced /ˈdʒɛmbeɪ/ 'JEM-bay') also known as jembe, jenbe, djimbe, jymbe, yembe, or jimbay, or sanbanyi in Susu; is a skin-covered hand drum shaped like a large goblet and meant to be played with bare hands. According to the Bamana people in Mali, the name of the djembe comes directly from the saying "Anke dje, anke be" which literally translates to "everyone gather together" and defines the drum's purpose. In the Bamanakan language, "Dje" is the verb for "gather" and "be" translates as "everyone".
Africa is a vast continent and its regions and nations have distinct musical traditions. Most importantly, the music of north Africa (red region on map) has a different history from that of Sub-Saharan African music.
North Africa is the seat of the Mediterranean culture that built Egypt and Carthage before being ruled successively by Greeks, Romans and Goths and then becoming the Maghreb of the Arab world. Like the musical genres of the Nile Valley and the Horn of Africa (sky-blue and dark green region on map), its music has close ties with Middle Eastern music.