Filed Under (Beninese culture, Ethnomusicology) by Rob on 29-01-2009

One thing I LOVE about Africa is the incredible drumming, which is almost everywhere!

Wow! This guy knows how to drum, eh? For my thesis, I had to transcribe the rhythms of various drumming ensembles in Benin – a real challenge, I can tell you! It’s not so much a case of what is the time signature of the piece? but more what time signature is each individual playing in and how on EARTH do these all fit together?! Western rhythmic notation falls short for such a task.

What’s the difference between transcription and notation? I know, but do you??? If you don’t, then take this course and find out!

Finally, here are a few more cool African drumming videos I have recorded over the years:

A Nawdm lady playing double drums in northern Togo

The amazing blind drummer in central Benin, playing home-made drums with great skill!

Ngangam musicians in north-eastern Togo, including a lady playing a kapok pod filled with stones.

The old bloke in central Togo, who puts one beater in his mouth, then removes it when he needs it.

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