It was awesome!
We played 2 rhythms I don’t know, though we started class with one that has an accompaniment I am familiar with. There are 2 basic parts that carry through most rhythms. Usually, in African, one or the other pattern supports the harder accompaniment, and Quinn, who solos and holds us all together.
The second rhythm knocked me OUT! Forget it. Quinn had to modify it so I could keep up. I wasn’t the only, thank god, but man! My hands, arms, and shoulders are aching now!
Typically, in class, 4 or 5 drummers make up that week’s corp. Today, we had a full dununba section (3 separate drums and rhythms, as opposed to the one regular fella who plays a version that blends what the 3 drums would do together. Sorry, can’t explain it better than that. It’s called “ballet style”) … and 6 on djembe! I can’t tell you what it feels like to have that music pulsing through your entire body, buzzing from head to toe and shaking every cell! It’s as though you can feel the space outside your body.
On the drive home, at high noon, a huge murmuration of starlings danced overhead. It was directly above me at one stop, and so big that you could watch it in the sky and beneath, in shadow. It felt like the refracted light of crystals in a sunny room, landing on you, teasing you, flying all around you. I felt like I did in class, like I was part of something bigger than myself, like feeling the space outside of me, like sharing myself with that space and creating new energy altogether.
I’m so glad to be back!