I've never blogged. To be totally honest, I'm not sure I'm comfortable writing a diary on the 'net, but thought I'd give it a shot. We'll see where it goes.
I'd never heard of a djembe 6 weeks ago. My journey began with a present for a friend, and in the few hours between when I purchased the drum and gave the present, I got hooked.
I've now got two instructors, a quickly growing MP3, CD, and DVD library of Western African music. Oh, and a beautiful lengke drum that sometimes makes amazing sounds (when my technique allows), and always makes me smile.
Right now I'm struggling with rhythms. My western ears and brain really struggle to make sense of the rhythms. The challenge started, however, with making the right noises.
My first challenge was the slap. Bass and tones were pretty easy, but I just couldn't get my fingertips to sting the way they should. Then I hit one. Then another after many failed attempts. Now I'm slapping with ease, but not liking the sound of my tones. Oh, and the bass needs to be more relaxed and closer to the edge. And I'd like a little more zing in my slap. And my left slap doesn't sound quite like my right...
Anyway, that's pretty much where I am at the moment.
Last edited by EvanP on Sat Jul 09, 2011 6:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
3 Comments Viewed 18615 times
Sounds like you got the bug, and got it bad Congratulations, your life will never be quite the same again
Don't worry about your technique too much. I've been playing for six and a half years, and my technique is still improving. It takes time and lots of playing.
Thanks for the encouragement. If you hadn't noticed, I tend to be a bit compulsive.
By the way, I really appreciate your posts, especially recordings. I borrowed a little Sony digital recorder for my group lesson yesterday and it really helped me figure things out better after class. It did not do a good job at all recording bass, as bass and tones sounded very similar on the recording, even though they were very different in person. I'm thinking the little condenser mics are just too small on that recorder to pick up below about 40Hz. I'm thinking seriously about picking up one of the new Sony's (PDP 10?), although I was really hoping to get by with just a cheapo since I'm not planning on actually recording for anything other than personal use.
evan, pretty much all the regular posters here share your compulsivity, although it usually takes 6 months to get there, not 6 weeks
have you checked out this thread?
you'll pretty much go through cycles of improving your slaps, then noticing your tones need improvement, then improving your tones, and finding your slaps are no way near where you want them to be... on and on... it's a lifelong process. at least you got a nice drum which is the real deal and inspires you to play.
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