Last Sunday, we had a great performance at the annual Russian Talent Fair organized by Kedry. I decided to go with a full ensemble, including three people playing Dunduns traditional style. Although we never played like this before, it did come out pretty neat music wise :)
Also, I asked my teacher Salif Koné join us with his dancing lady, Meridian, and they made it! It was a big win for our group who never played with real African musicians before and never experienced a real connection of drumming with the dance.
And, of course, his Bala added a whole new dimension to our playing! 
Thanks to everyone who participated, you did a great job!
Check out this video by Ilya Anisimov:
 
 
I'm happy to let you know that we did our next five rhythms already! And of course, they have been a little more advanced than the first five. Today, I'm adding the learning videos for these rhythms to our  Learning page:

A short video from our last class featuring Koredjuga and Yankadi solo at the end:
 
 
Finally, our first full-size performance took place at Russian spring fest "Maslenitsa" held by Russian community Kedry (kedry.org) in Sanborn Park, Saratoga. We did just in time, before the rangers came :) Many thanks for everybody who took part, either with a drum or a shaker or dance or just a good vibe!
 
 
The Mendiani page now has a class recording of the arrangement that we used to play with Mamadou. It was played as an intermediate piece by the leader, each time with a different part of the group, the rest going on with the accompaniment and Dunduns uninterrupted. The roll in the beginning is where the leader interacts emotionally with the group, building up more energy, and the whole piece serves as an additional impulse to speed up the rhythm:

http://vimeo.com/60533729

 
 
Below is a video showing the breakdown of the introduction to Djansa that we're preparing for the performance. All tones and slaps are played by myself (just for now), the group comes in with the bases at the right time :) Here we go:

http://vimeo.com/59858387

 
 
I'm happy to remind you that winter holidays are over (for most of us), and we continue the class at increasing pace! We have a pretty tight schedule leading to a performance at a spring time Russian House "Kedry" fest, on March, 17th, in Sanborn Park (Saratoga) (you can check the details here: http://kedry.org. Thanks to our Russian friends again for hospitality!) So don't miss your chance to take part in the performance!

Also, we're expanding our Learning section with Dundun parts for all five rhythms. This is so called "Ballet Style" arrangement (in our case, simplified) when all three Dundun drums are played by a single person. For those of you who wants to play as a Dundun player, please arrange for individual lessons, because we don't normally learn these in class.

Check a short video below from our latest class featuring Mendiani and Kuku rhythms played with Dunduns. A whole different story!
 
 
Hi! We have two new rhythms in the Learning section: Kuku and Marakadon.
Also, check out this short video playing Marakadon in class below. Only the brave :)
 
 
Congratulations! Now we have a complete Dundun set for our classes & jams! Check out this video from our first take on them:
Thanks for everyone who came to the class, you did a great job!
 
 
Picture
Yesterday, my first drumming teacher, Mamadou Kone, passed away. I'm very grateful to him for revealing the Joy of Drumming to me and many others. He was such a generous and profound soul... Rest in peace.

 
 
We were playing Kuku for the first time, and people got so excited that we decided to play it for our Russian community on their anniversary the next day. I have added a simplest introduction from the original video that I posted earlier, and it made for a nice "performance" :)