I am here to share my love and knowledge of djembe with you. Because it sets my soul free like a bird soaring through clouds and connects me with people in a joyous way, I love drumming. Like most people who play and listen to djembe music, I smile and laugh when I play. It’s so uplifting.
Without lengthy explanation the drum will guide you to the peace you seek. There is no rhythm without presence, when that presence becomes evident energy and ecstasy follow.
However nothing worth doing is easy so expect to work your body and mind in the pursuit. Than watch with wonder as your skills progress, your perceptions sharpen, and your body strengthens.
This practice will improve your memory, coordination and overall brain function. On a musical level your sense of timing, tempo, and swing will be greatly improved. Beyond technical training you will also be taught how to improvise based on your own intuition.
To play this type of music takes a communal effort. The more we drum together the more we see how the interconnection of each of our individual rhythms create one larger singular rhythm. The skills derived from communal drumming when applied to other community efforts greatly improve their efficiency and lend a light touch to ones efforts.
When I’m not immersed in some aspect of The Drum, I read, meditate, do yoga, enjoy nature, socialize with friends, cook, dance, write poetry, practice martial arts, dote on my cat, take long walks in deep forests and backstroke in vast oceans. In short, I live and love every moment of my life to the fullest.
In playing drums for twenty-five years, I have worked with many master-level drummers. However, my principal teacher is Malian master drummer Abdoul Doumbia, with whom I had the privilege to apprentice for ten years. Every time I return to Boulder, Colorado, I resume my tutelage (and friendship) with him.
Abdoul is a Grand Master with staggering knowledge and technique. Research him online for a detailed description of his myriad accomplishments.
- Twenty-five years drumming experience
- Primary West African teachers: Malian Master Drummer Abdoul Doumbia and Guinean Master Drummer Fara Tolno.
- A decade (ten years) of teaching experience
MICHAEL PLUZNICK has always had a deep passion for exotic music, ethnic culture, drums and percussion, no matter where they originate. Since 1976, he has been studying, performing and teaching drumming and percussion, largely from the African diaspora. Living and studying extensively with the top master drummers and musicians in Mali and Guinea, West Africa, Brazil, Cuba, India and Puerto Rico, he has devoted himself to his craft. To that end, he has produced his own award-winning cd’s on several labels (www.michaelpluznick.com) and a series of cd’s from Mali, West Africa which are available at that website. Over the decades, he has collaborated and recorded with Jim Chappell, Clarence Clemons, Jerry Garcia, Mickey Hart, Raul Rico and Todd Rundgren.
He was also one of three premiere soloists in Grand Master Bolokada Conde’s “Les Percusions Melenke” West African percussion ensemble. Michael has taught and been a guest lecturer at Sonoma State University, Univ. of California (Santa Cruz) and instructed top teachers such as Arthur Hull, NLP inventors, scientists and a host of others. Most recently, he has been teaching and performing throughout Asia, India and the USA.
With his extensive background in wholistic healing and the fine arts, he combines these disciplines to present each student with a well-rounded and -grounded experience.
My goal is to share the joy and fun that is at the core of world music, while honoring and respecting its roots and traditions.
Through study, practice and assimilation, I perform and record this sacred and celebratory music, at times fusing it with contemporary instruments and music.
I devote my whole being – studies, investigations, incredible information and music – to sharing and passing on this uplifting music. And I am humbly grateful to all the souls (my teachers, colleagues, bandmates, students, audiences) who have touched me on this journey. The best part is today and tomorrow there will be so much more………
Thus, may we all experience the power and beauty that lies within us and be inspired by the soulful rhythms and music of the ethnic cultures and drumming itself.
Have you ever wanted to learn to play the conga drum?
Drum In The Sun also offers private and group conga drum lessons with Michael Pluznick on Koh Phangan Island and Bangkok.
All styles of conga drumming are presented, including popular rhythms on more than one conga drum for performances with Latin, Rock and Funk bands. Traditional Folkloric Rumba drumming class is also available as are many other styles. For basic to advanced exercises, techniques and rhythms, we have you covered.
We teach both old school and new school playing styles as well. Please message Michael with your particular interests or requests.