We encourage drummers of every level, including absolute beginners, to join us. Ko Phangan is a paradise and ideal spot to learn in a relaxing, supportive atmosphere. No matter your level, every participant will appreciate this experience. Drummers seeking self-reflection in a tropical oasis will thrive in this environment.
You can bring your own instruments. Otherwise, we have drums onsite for students to use during class. You can also buy or rent a professional-quality drum.
Every rhythm and dance has a symbolic meaning. Generally, they fall into four broad categories: Animals, Changes of Season, Ethnicity and Rituals.
The djembe is said to contain 3 spirits - those of the tree from which it is carved, the animal whose skin covers the drum and the craftsman’s. The drum wood is extremely durable and covered with a relatively thick skin. The drum is played barehanded. The rhythms reflect a dance of the hands on the drum skin, the sounds of which may lead to a deep, meditative state. Compared to other instruments, the technique of the djembe is easier to learn. Although practicing is encouraged, enduring sessions are not necessary to produce the traditional tone-rich sounds. The djembe, like any other instrument, is best-served by precise rhythm and timing.
The impressive dununba drum family consists of 3 drums. The largest being the dununba or "mother" drum, the medium-sized sangban which controls the melody and the metronome purposed smallest drum the kenkene, are covered with thick cow skin and provide a profound boom which pleasingly contrasts and complements the sharp, high-toned slaps on the djembe. With thick sticks, the dunun players pound penetrating base rhythms, accented with the bright buoyancy of attached metal bells.
Many drum students do not realize that by practicing, learning and mastering traditional forms and exercises it is beneficial and allows much more freedom and variety in our playing styles. Building and exercising your hands and brain muscles in new pathways gives us more to draw on and employ, regardless of where or how you play. Whether you pursue traditional, free-form or hybrid styles, training in the fundamentals is extremely helpful in expanding your creative expression. Practicing and mastering new patterns and repeating them expands our repertoire and awareness. Pay your dues by practicing and build on the fundamentals. When you have the “chops”, you can confidently sit in and throw down with anyone in a confident, humble way. The cornerstone of a solid foundation is getting the technique of the tones, playing the rhythms and knowing how parts interlock - how what you are playing fits in with the overall piece. No matter which direction you go, your solid foundation in the fundamentals will take you there. Train your muscles at “the rhythm gym”. Learn to throw the proper combinations and you will be ready to step in the ring. Or circle. Once you have paid your dues, the fun part is letting go and jamming. You don’t even have to think about it. The wonderful reality about playing hand drums is it offers us the opportunity, once the piece is percolating, to let go and transcend thinking. Surrendering bears sweet satisfaction. Daily practice will facilitate this goal. I can not emphasize this enough. Practice, practice, practice. Burn the fundamentals into your being. What you invest - your time, energy, study and sweat - is revealed in what you play. After more than 40 years of playing, I still practice every day.
We allow videoing and audio, We suggest video at the end of class and audio during the class. The videoing can distract other classmates that is why we suggest it at the end.
The more you put in the more you can get out. It's ultimately up to you. Keep in mind that the full courses will give you a much broader spectrum and full training can really help you to grow and improve in your studies.
Beginners are welcomed and encouraged and courses are built specifically to meet their needs. a class of any length will be very helpful and useful for you. I am advanced will the classes be too basic? In a multi level case everyone will get special attention. You will be given parts and techniques suitable to your level. Both teachers have immense trains and knowledge on how to teach and evaluate students levels and you will be given fun and challenges parts to help you improve and expand in your quest for knowledge and drumming techniques.
There are nightly jams on the local beach as well as jams at our teaching facility
You can practice at any beach or outdoor location. If you want to practice in your room simply put a towel on your drum. You can also organize with other class students to practice outside the classroom at your own choice of location.
All registration can be done easily and conveniently online. Please be advised: * No refunds on any class purchases * No rollovers. All pre-purchased classes must be used during the time frame specified at the time of purchase. Unless otherwise stated by a instructor
Bring whatever you normally travel with, though it’s practical to have lightweight rain gear. In many cases, you can find and purchase on Ko Phangan (or anywhere in Thailand) whatever you need or may have forgotten.
There are a few different options. Most people use or rent small scooter like motorbikes which can be rented by the day, week or month. You can get them from your local accomodation (hotel/room) or almost anywhere and everywhere on the island. You can also rent a bicycle although keep in mind if you are outside of the town Shri Thanu where the classes are it is very hilly. You can also get a Song Tao or local taxi truck although they are not on any kind of regular schedule and there may be some walking involved.
The island is filled with every type of imaginable food. Our area is constant with the theme of health and wellness and there are many healthy organic oriented and vegetarian restaurants as well as Italian, and other styles of food available.
There is a local hospital very close to Shri Thanu. For more serious illness there are hospitals on the neighboring island of Koh Samui and of course Bangkok if things are really out of control.
There are very few to no problems and the island is very safe even for single female travelers. Having said that we always suggest normal precautions.
The current exchange rate is 1 USD: 31.39 Thai Baht
Because many foreign travelers frequent this part of the island, most local people speak some English. That said, try learning some Thai words when you are here. It is a colorful language and the Thai people really appreciate your effort.
Koh Phangan provides a wide variety of housing options. Whether you’re a backpacker seeking a hostel or prefer more upscale lodging, there is something to suit all budgets and tastes. Please see the Accommodation Section of our website for further details.