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Bang The Drum Slowly November 14, 2010

Posted by nrhatch in Life Balance, Mindfulness, Music & Dance, Nature.

We attended a Drum Circle tonight . . . our first.  Attended may not be the right word, but it’s close enough.

About forty people actively participated, beating on drums to create a collective rhythm and cadence.  A few tambourines and castanets joined the unified heartbeat as it pulsed across the sands.

As the sun approached the horizon, the drum beats slowed, becoming more deliberate, before speeding up to a crescendo as the sun disappeared from view.  In its wake . . . clouds tinted by last rays and harmony on the beach.


When we attend to the moment, we attend eternity.  Bang the drum slowly.

Aah . . . that’s better!


1. Shannon Sullivan - November 14, 2010

I co-lead a Shamanic Drum & Percussion Circle once a month for the Full Moon Celebration out at a local mountainous canyon called Sabino Canyon in Tucson Arizona and it is a beautiful way to share the rhythm of the earth with the people around us and connect in that blessed way.

nrhatch - November 14, 2010

Shannon, a mountainous canyon under the Full Moon sounds like a perfect place and time to celebrate the Turning of the Wheel . . .

Connecting with others to share the rhythm of the Earth, the circle of life, and our unified life force and pulse . . . blessed, indeed.

2. Brown Eyed Mystic - November 14, 2010

Gosh. You have NO idea how much I want to be there. It’s great that you have a community and indulge in this spiritual act. I await my chance to attend one 🙂

Reminded me of a sequence in Paulo Coelho’s book “Brida”.


nrhatch - November 14, 2010

I enjoyed it.

I’m not sure how often they gather for the Drum Circle, but I would definitely go again.

Great way to celebrate the setting sun.

3. Richard W Scott - November 14, 2010

I’ve been in a closed room drumming/dancing kind of thing. It was as though there was a campfire to leap across, but no real fire. It was outrageous.

nrhatch - November 14, 2010

There is a primal quality to it . . . no wonder you envisioned a campfire.

I get the sense that many drum circles include fire as a centerpoint.

4. Cindy - November 14, 2010

Primal is just the word, drumming is something you can’t explain to someone who hasn’t experienced it.

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

To me, the steady continuity of the unified beat provided “reassurance” that a new day would dawn.

5. thysleroux - November 15, 2010

I have always wished to experience this …

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

They are becoming more prevalent. You might find one near you . . . listen for the beat.

6. Naomi - November 15, 2010

Ah, gotta LOVE drumming!!! Love that fabulous last line too, Nancy 🙂

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

Wonderful positive energy . . . a reminder to return to the moment at hand and breathe deep.

Thanks, Nomes!

7. Loreen Lee - November 15, 2010

I live near a large ‘legacy’ park, High Park, where for the last twenty-thirty years, in one of the glens, a group of about 30-40 drummers have met and ‘drummed’from late Spring to early Autumn. I’m often in the park during their ‘ritual’ I guess is the best word. You can hear them from as far away as the Boulevard, and you’re invited to participate and bring your drums. It goes on all day, from about ten in the morning till dusk, non-stop, the lead rhythm being passed from player to player.

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

Every day? All day? For six months of the year?

Around here, most of the drum circles seem to coincide with sunset ~ starting an hour or so before the sun dips below the horizon.

Loreen Lee - November 15, 2010

Sorry, just on Saturdays. It was fine for awhile, but after some years…….and yes, they play during the day….Actually haven’t been to the park on Saturdays’ for a few years. Maybe they’re not there any more. They used to work on a kind of shift basis. They weren’t Asian or Carribean or anything, but I know it has religious significance for them. I don’t know how they keep it up. That’s dedication.

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

Participating on lovely sunny days would be a delight . . . on rainy days it would require more dedication. 🙂

From the reading I did last night, there are different reasons/rationales for the ritual.

But it’s soothing to hear . . . at least in small doses.

8. Loreen Lee - November 15, 2010

When they first started I made a point to go and used to spend the afternoons there. After awhile though my dedication ‘faltered’. It was just taking too much of my energy. It may have been Sundays not Saturdays. My memory is not as good as it used to be. It’s been about ten years since I last went.

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

Last night on the beach, I meditated to the sound of the drums and the sight of the setting sun.

Peaceful and soothing . . . but not something that I would want to feel “compelled” to do on a regular basis.

9. Paula Tohline Calhoun - November 15, 2010

Nancy: I know this comment has absolutely nothing to do with the topic of this post, but I can’t let the title go by without recommending to you and whoever reads this an absolutely stunning and beautiful, moving film called “Bang the Drum Slowly.” Don’t let the fact that it is categorized as a “sports” film swerve you from making every effort to see this movie. It stars Robert DeNiro, but the entire cast, including an extraordinary performance by Michael Moriarty, shines and will remain in your mind and heart for a long time to come. SEE THIS MOVIE! ‘nuf said?

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

I’ll check it out. Thanks, Paula.

10. Tammy McLeod - June 8, 2011

Well, your setting sounds quite a bit more spectacular and I like the comments about the primal nature of drumming. I think this is a cool activity and I’m looking forward to my next opportunity.

nrhatch - June 8, 2011

One of the largest drum circles in the country takes place in Sarasota on Siesta Key every Sunday night:

Tammy McLeod - June 8, 2011


nrhatch - June 8, 2011

Make sure you time your visit here to include a layover on Sunday night!

The drum circle is about 30 minutes away.

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