Ch-ch-ch-changes! After 15 years of bringing our monthly drum circles to Carroll County, we have decided that it's time to change things up. We will be hosting our drum circle at Cedarhurst from 7-9 at Cedarhurst on the third Saturday of August, September, and October, 2016. After that, Thomas and Laurie will be stepping away from our leadership roles as the monthly facilitators. The future of the monthly drum circles at Cedarhurst is uncertain after October 15th. We are negotiating with one of our regulars who may be interested in taking on the responsibility of hosting some drum circles in the future, but who cannot commit to a monthly engagement. If you would like to be considered as a reliable co-host, please email me as soon as possible at firstname.lastname@example.org.
So, what will Laurie and Thomas do next?
We are looking at venues in Westminster City that would be willing to host a monthly acoustic music jam. The focus will be on acoustic guitars, ukuleles, mandolins, banjos, fiddles, basses, recorders, concert flutes, penny whistles, handheld percussion such as shakers and rasps, and one or two smaller drums such as cajon. We will be beginner-friendly although participants will be expected to be familiar with the basics of their instruments (for example, string players should be able to easily manage the following chords: A, Am, A7, Bb, Bm or Bm7, C, C7, D, Dm, D7, E, Em, E7, F, G, Gm, and G7 or should be able to pick out the melody by ear). We will be playing from provided songbooks that have lyrics and chords. The music itself will be mostly classic rock with some blues and old-time thrown in for good measure. Singers welcome and much needed!
So, does this mean the end of Carroll Rhythms? No! Thomas and Laurie are hoping to do occasional drum circles for festivals. But after more than 200 monthly drum circles, it's time for us to shift to something new.
Does this mean the end of regular drum circles in our area? No! There are plenty of places to drum if you're willing to travel just a little bit further! Check out meetup.com to find local drum circles; use search terms such as drum or music. Or go to Google and enter the search terms drum circle Maryland.
We'll continue to post upcoming drum events on our Meetup and Facebook pages, so stay tuned!
What is a drum circle?
A drum circle is a rhythmical event in which people come together to play drums and other percussion instruments. Drum circles are gaining in popularity here in the United States and all over the world. They are a fun and accessible way to play music in a group setting.
There are three types of drum circles:
1) Culturally specific drum circles in which the participants are expected to know and play certain rhythms from different parts of the world.
2) Non-facilitated drum circles in which the participants are encouraged to play whatever rhythms they choose, often creating them on the spot, and in which there is no leader or facilitator.
3) Facilitated drum circles in which the participants are encouraged to play whatever rhythms they choose, often making them up on the spot, and in which there is a trained drum circle facilitator who helps the group to achieve a higher level of musicality through gentle direction.
Carroll Rhythms uses this third model in all of its community drum circles. We often sustain our rhythms for twenty minutes or more. In addition, we play at a comfortable volume, we vary the tempo and types of rhythms we play, and we use a lot of different instruments. In the past, we've incorporated all instruments that people have brought to our drum circles, including:
-djembes, ashikos, bougaraboos, cajons, congas, bongos, nadals, talking drums, riqs, doumbeks, djun djuns, buffalo drums, tars, and bodhrans
-trumpets, saxophones, harmonicas, conch shells, didgeridoos, recorders, penny whistles, ocarinas, and flutes
-shakers, rain sticks, and ocean drums
-mbiras, berimbaus, and jaw harps
-guitars, mandolins, dulcimers, harps, violins, and electric bass
-glockenspiels, singing bowls, chimes, tambourines, hank drums, and bells
-pianos, accordions, and keyboards
-rasps, cabasas, and washboards
-tongue drums, slit gongs, cajitas, clave, and udu
We also encourage people to dance and sing!