- Tue Jun 01, 2010 8:05 am
Bortier is a drummer from Ghana. He's been playing since he was something like 8 years old and plays traditional Ghanaian drums as well as dunduns and djembe. His ethnic group is Ga. He teaches both Ghanaian traditional rhythms as well as Malinke rhythms.
He's had a quite a few teachers over the years. His main teacher is Isaac "Tuza" Afutu, a Ghanaian master drummer. (Tuza won the Pan-African drumming contest twice, once when he was 18, and once when he was in his mid-twenties.) I know that other teachers of Bortier include Adama and Madou Keita from Burkina Faso, as well as Adotey Richter from Ghana. (I'm sure that he has had many other teachers over the years.)
I've studied with Bortier twice in Ghana, for a month each time (six days a week, 3 hours per day). He's an excellent teacher and a phenomenal drummer.
As I said, he teaches not only djembe, but also treshi (kpanlogo) as well as Ewe drums, talking drum, and whole bunch of other stuff.
Bortier is among the many Ghanaian drummers who curse the predominance of the djembe in the western world ("bloody djembes everywhere"). I've heard him play treshi like a demon and, believe me, that drum can be every bit as expressive as a djembe. But, over here in Australia, the main focus is on djembe, because that's all people know... (I think you can count the total number of threshis in all of Queensland on the fingers of two hands.)
Anyway, I can recommend Bortier as a teacher and as a fun person to hang out with. Having rubbed shoulders with him (literally) for weeks at a stretch, I can attest to his teaching and artistic merits.
Last edited by michi on Wed Jun 02, 2010 3:45 am, edited 5 times in total.