Echo of a culture

Hobby Club

  A section of the crowd during one of the  sessions. Reaching people across communities, ‘Drum Jam’, a company that organises drum circles along with other activities, started only a year-and-a-half ago in the City.

Under the guidance of a trained drummer-cum-percussionist, Roberto Narain, this company was started to help and reach out to people through music.

Open and free for all, this initiation is said to be highly therapeutic, which allows people to communicate better, relieve stress and come together with the help of the vibrations of the drum. “Live music is helpful in so many different ways, but people have misconceptions that it is for people who drink or do drugs. Hopefully through this, people will find music as an outlet for relieving stress,” says Roberto.

So what is a Drum Circle? “It’s as simple as a group of people who sit in a circle with different kinds of drums and beat them,” he explains while adding, “It is used as a communication tool from which everyone and anyone can reap benefit.” But the point is not to make noise, the idea is to create music as a community. It does not matter if one is a professional musician or not, as long as one follows the instruction, music will come naturally to the individual.

“I believe rhythm is something one is born with. If one can walk, he or she has rhythm. Many a time, people do get a little uncomfortable at the start because they are put in an unfamiliar situation. But the beating of the drums is so powerful that within five minutes, everyone in the circle gets together. We have had total strangers playing the drums for almost two hours together,” he says.

Apparently, there is a historical reason for using a drum, “If one has noticed, all ancient cultures used to come together with the beating of drums. We have incorporated this historical background to the modern context,” explains Roberto, while adding, “A drum is also a user-friendly instrument and an easy one, which people can hit with their hands.”

Though they don’t meet on a regular basis, they do organise community drum circles as often as possible. “Since it’s a new start for us, we are still trying to get our database together and of course, there is the matter of finances,” he says.

Though community Drum Circles are free of cost, they manage their funds by organising corporate Drum Circles.

Every Drum Circle session is held for a minimum of one hour at any time of the day through which, the facilitator takes the group through a journey of rhythm with the help of various drums sourced from all over the world.

“We have had many people coming to us after the session requesting us to either train them in that particular drum or asking us about where can they get one of their own. But the point of this association is not to train a person, but to teach by not teaching,” he says.

For more information on community Drum Circles one can log onto their official
website www.drumjam.in

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