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Red Tweneboa Djembe Review by michi on Tue Jan 01, 2013 5:53 am
Way back in March 2009, we had a discussion on Ghanaian djembes. This was followed in August 2010 by a similar discussion.

The upshot of these threads is that a number of experienced drum makers and players expressed doubt about the quality of Ghanaian djembes, the majority of which are made of a wood called Tweneboa. That wood is very pale (almost white) in color, has a spongy texture and low weight, and is very soft (soft enough to make a dent with a finger nail). In my opinion, (white) Tweneboa is utterly unsuitable for djembes. All the Tweneboa djembes I ever dealt with sound anaemic, lack overtones, and don't achieve proper volume. I would prefer an...

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Drumming under water, part 2 by michi on Fri Jan 14, 2011 9:12 pm
The waters in Brisbane have mostly receded, but there are still many places that are inaccessible. I went to help friends of mine yesterday in one of the flood-affected areas. They were the lucky ones, living in a high-set house. They had three feet of water under the house and over their entire block. Despite the relatively mild flooding they experienced, the devastation is incredible. Everything is caked with mud, up to a foot deep in places. The smell is overwhelming: not only mud and rotting plant material, but sewage that got pushed out of drains and toilets during the flood. I saw many houses that were far worse off in the same area, some of them inundated to the roof line. People living in these houses have lost absolutely everything.

Traffic is chaotic with many roads closed. Those roads that are passable are covered in mud up to a foot deep. Driving along a flooded road, there are endless piles of destroyed household goods, furniture, clothes, books, and appliances lined up along...

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Adama Drame djembe for sale by johanbotha on Tue Mar 15, 2011 5:54 pm
I'm based in Johannesburg, South Africa - a friend is selling his Adama Drame djembe - with a letter from Adama authenticating it's origin. It's about 14-15" head diameter and beautifully made.

any ideas on what it's worth..

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Forokoroba - Looking for info on this rhythm by kbmountain@gmail.com on Sat Feb 01, 2014 8:35 pm
Nov 2013, in Guinea, I learned a dance to a rhythm called Forokoroba. After asking my teachers to say it repeatedly, that is how I believe it is spelled ... or at least sounds like it's spelled. I was told it is a Malinke welcoming and celebration rhythm. They likened it to a Yankadi, a happy, feel good "swingy" rhythm. I can not find any history or drum notation on it. I have found a few work shop videos of it being taught in dance classes in France. Can anyone provide me with more information on Forokoroba? Thank you.

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Mini-Guinea San Diego, May 2010, day 8 by michi on Wed May 05, 2010 10:56 pm
Day 8 (Wednesday) of the camp.

The intermediate group continued to work on Deniya, including three different breaks, which took up most of the session. Towards the end, Mamady demonstrated the parts for a new 4/4 rhythm called Balandugu Sila. The rhythm was inspired by the trip to Balandugu where Mamady did a pyramid with his students. (If you buy a copy of the volume 4 DVD, there is a great documentary in the bonus material about that trip. Also, listen to Taylor's interview, where he tells a few stories about the horror trip they had to get there. It took forever due to bad roads and technical problems with the cars.) The intermediates will start learning this rhythm tomorrow.

The advanced group finished off Yankadi. At the end of the session, Mamady improvised to Yankadi, which was a joy to listen to. Technically quite simple phrases, but they are placed "just so" and flow out with...

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