About druming


Goldie is drawn to African style Djembe drumming because she loves how it brings her immediately into the present moment, stretches her brain, and is tons of fun!  She also loves how it creates community as people gather to share rhythm, get in tune with each other, and entrain to the good vibrations.

In Africa, music had an essential role accompanying workers in the fields, community dances and events, during rituals, initiations, marriages, and funerals.  In North America and Europe, there has been increasing interest in exploring traditional African music ~ a tradition that, through the quality of sound, has proven to bring joy and promote well-being.  Therefore, drum circles (a North American term) have sprung up in a variety of settings and are being applied in ways such as corporate or other team building, recreational music making, wellness programs, education, music therapy, celebrations, spirituality, personal growth, and more.

“The musicians (in West Africa) were expected to maintain high moral standards because of their power to influence people through music.  They were people of knowledge who were listened to carefully at village councils. In the Minianka expression, they spoke with lafolo yati, “the voice of the man who knows through the drum.”  ~  The Healing Drum by Yaya Diallo and Mitchell Hall 


Drum Circles and Classes Facilitated by Goldie

If interested, please check the Calendar page for upcoming events and/or connect with Goldie through the Contact page.

Goldie believes rhythm is inside us all, starting with our own heart beat.  She and her life partner, James, began facilitating drum circles and classes in 2011, and continue to do so.  Rhythms are picked up quickly thanks to the use of the traditional African method of teaching through oral culture that has the philosophy “if you can say it, you can play it!”.  So true.  Goldie, James and their Free Spirit Drummers have fun sharing the joy of the drum through performances in an annual Children’s Festival, a Multi-Cultural Day event, and Fundraisers.

Goldie, James & Free Spirit Drummers with David Thiaw at Children’s Festival 2012

Goldie’s Drum Mentors

Goldie and her life partner, James, were blessed to meet their friend and mentor, Joan Casorso of Inner Rhythms, in 2010 who enthusiastically introduced them to the world of drumming. Joan is a one-of-a kind, superb teacher and coach.

Joan Casorso
Joan Casorso Founder Inner Rhythms Classes|Workshops|Retreats
“Joan Casorso brings 30 years of teaching & coaching experience to her Inner Rhythms programs. Inner Rhythms encompasses drum, dance, rhythm based communication activities, “Yoga Plus”, community building and body, mind, spirit health.”

In 2011, Joan Casorso introduced Goldie and James to Master Drummer, David Thiaw, her friend and mentor.  Goldie enjoys working with James, Joan, and David to bring people together to drum and sometimes to dance and drum!  Goldie acknowledges the additional blessing and honour to count David a good friend and mentor. David is an individual of immense talent, knowledge and heart.  He loves including all who come to drum with him by saying, “this is your culture too” ~ speaking of the African drum language!

David Thiaw
David Thiaw Master Drummer, Entertainer, Cultural Facilitator, Sensei
David Thiaw (pronounced “chow”) has been described as a true Renaissance man. While foremost a percussionist of remarkable talent, he is also a singer, storyteller, composer, linguist, teacher and drum craftsman. Originally from Senegal, West Africa, David currently resides in Canada.  African and world music has been a lifelong passion for David. He formed his first drum and dance troupe at the age of 14 and later traveled across Africa, Europe, North and South America. He has performed with many top entertainers including Les Grands Ballets Canadiens, Nouvelle Aire Dance Co, Miroslaw Vitous, Charlie Biddle, Pepper Adams and Linda Tillery.” To find out more about David go to his site: www.davidthiaw.ca

The following description of a djembe drum comes from David Thiaw’s book called: African Drum Workshop ~ Volume #1 Intro to Djembe (which comes with practice CD):

The Djembe is a specifically West African drum that dates back many centuries to the ancient Kingdom of Mali, an empire comprising of what are now the separate countries of Mali, Guinea, Senegal and Burkina Faso.  Djembe Bara is this drum’s original name, from the Mande words bara for drum, and djembe, an original dance style.  The name referred to a drum whose function was to accompany dancers.  Today the drum is known by the shortened name djembe.


Life is Rhythm

Moving to rhythm is definitely nature’s way.  The video below is one of Goldie’s favourites showing so vividly how work, play, all parts of life are full of rhythm!

“Life has a rhythm, it’s constantly moving. 
The word for rhythm ( used by the Malinke tribes ) is Foli.
 It is a word that encompasses so much more than drumming, dancing or sound.
It’s found in every part of daily life.
In this film you not only hear and feel rhythm but you see it.
It’s an extraordinary blend of image and sound that
feeds the senses and reminds us all
how essential it is.”  ~ Thomas Roebers


NOTE: Film created by the brothers Thomas Roebers and Floris Leeuwenberg in Baro, Guinee Afrika; dedicated to the people of Baro.  Beautiful sound recording and sound design Bjorn Warning.  Translator and Rhythm specialist Thomas Bonekamp.  With special thanks to the chief:  DJembefola: Mansa Camio.