Hey all! I'm a beginner djembe player, I'm in the with the sounds and history of the djembe. My husband plays guitar and we want to sing and play Christian worship music together. I can find a ton of traditional djembe rhythms on you tube but I can't find anything that teaches me to play to a song. Where do I start?
Not with a djembe, I am afraid
A djembe is too loud and doesn't fit with a guitar. The typical djembe pattern also do not go well with western style music. Other drums and traditions might serve your purpose much better...
There are many ways to play a djembe and there are different sounds from different shape djembes and different skins.
But really why can't a djembe fit with a certain music.
If someone can play a djembe skillfully they could fit it with many musics or musical jam imo. I think peoples perceptions of instruments will evolve and the djembe is already achknowledged as a versatile play along percussion device and it's popularity will continue to grow.
Maybe that'd be a cultural appropiation issue you have there djembefeeling?
Could be. I really don't like didgeridoo combined with djembe and the like, doing percussion with a violin and stuff, though I like stomp very much. It's enriching to see what everyday objects you can turn into music and how many different sounds you can get out of an instrument by using them in an unusual way. But that does work only a couple of times for the curiosity. Every instrument has it's way of playing where it sounds best, for which purpose it is build. Sometimes it is only a matter of familiarization and you like new combinations of sounds when you get used to them. But most of the time those new combinations sound just "interesting".
Anyway, I am afraid that we are on our way to an accademic debate over a simple practical question and thus commiting thread hijacking again. A beginner usually does not play the djembe skillfully. And there are - in my view and almost all the people I know think so too - other instruments that fit much better with a guitar, like cajon, bongo, conga, and bougarabou. At least if you do not want to use a ton of technical equipment to balance the huge gap in loudness...
Every instrument has it's way of playing where it sounds best, for which purpose it is build.
If we look at the evolution of djembe surely there will be different sounds along the way.
Many different size and shape bowls and different mounting of different skins have been used. It creates an instrument which can sound in many different ways depending on the materials.
Anyways even a 'loud' high pitched drum can be played gently and quietly with the finger tips.
I just don't see any logic in advising people not to use a djembe with a guitar.
To me it is just a cliche to advise someone to use cajon/bongo/conga and not djembe. I prefer a djembe lowly tuned to these especially a cow skin low tuned.
Many 4/4 rhythyms can be used to play along with a guitar jam. Macru, djole, kassa, madan, kuku, balahulinja etc. http://www.paulnas.eu/wap/
Personally i wouldn't be into Christian worship music but what ever floats peoples boats. People should at least try to use what instruments they have and not be inhibited due to perception of how something should be played by purists.
Example of djembe, calabash and sabar drums played unconventionally with guitar with Habib Koite.
This next clip is rocking too. Talking drum, bala, Kit, bass and guitar. Nice.