DJEMBESOLO - Binary, ternary and more

My djembesolo project is growing. I just launched the second course a couple of weeks ago and the feedback is excellent. Check the above video for a free preview. You can enroll here !

DJEMBESOLO - Online Course

Twenty years ago I wrote a (big) book about the djembe. But I was half convinced it was the support I wanted. At least not alone. Then I thought about making DVDs. It seemed to be better, but again I didn’t believe enough in it to pursue. And now here am I in 2019, completely enjoying the technology we can use nowadays. I just launched a new website focused on my teaching today.
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Full Blue (Work In Progress)

Some very nice things begin to happen! Happy

Skype Lessons

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I have been asked to give lessons on Skype for some time but I was skeptical at first. Then I used it while working on the Samuel l Jackson challenge to communicate with some musicians and I found it very convenient. So I picked a platform to handle bookings and payments, then organized a dedicated audio/video system and finally launched the service this last January (2019). I really enjoy it and the student feedback is excellent.
What they say
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For all of us who have an urgent question to solve, I cannot think of a more experienced teacher than him.
Lloyd Blum
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Highly precise and very helpful. I highly recommend to anyone!

Yann Sticker
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Lilian Cui
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Top teacher in my living room with just a few clicks - Brilliant!
Martin Schärer
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C'est tout bon!!!! Allez-y vous ne le regretterez pas. Michel Weelen

Knock Knock

I was working for hours on my future djembesolo online school. The topic was about sounds, all sort of sounds. At one moment I had the good idea to just play around to refresh my mind.

Pres de Lyon

Does it work?
To my knowledge there is no binary 3 beat rhythm in djembe music. Time to try something!

L0uis for the Sleeping Giant

Djembesolo Trio in action
This is our first video production. Recorded and Shot in Ireland/Dingle in front of the Sleeping Giant island. Inspiring!

Samuel L Jackson Challenge

I thought: "Here I can do something".
Then I talked with some friends, to my son, to people I never met... et voilà.
Featuring: Solveig Rakout, Lucian Nagy, Papis Fofana, Sylvain Leroux, Nelson Ewande & Rodéric Mégé.

A Djembe Made By Georges Bugnon

I am working on a design and tension system resulting of my experience with the instrument. This one is the first prototype. I played solo for a few seconds, liked it and then added some backing tracks here and there.

Full Blue In The Sky

My 2016 Summer Workshop took place in Ardèche surrounded by nature. Some places were really inspiring and I had to capture some "Ardèche" improvisations on video. The djembe I played here is "Made in France" by Georges BUGNON.

Kakilambe Intro - Nice & Easy

Nice & Easy
With a kind of "nothing to prove" attitude, I just let it go the way I felt. Very nice audience!

Pattern Embellishment

Pattern embellishment - explained
It's not easy to see what is hidden behind advanced embellishments. In this tutorial I will explain the "what" the "why" and the "how" from one isolated sound to a classic solo pattern you certainly have already heard.

Get your copy of the complete tutorial here

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Focus On Patterns!

I was first exposed to djembe music in 1973 when I heard Fode YOULA playing on Claude NOUGARO’s album "Locomotive d’or". A few years later I went to Africa and began to learn. Over years I have seen changes happening about the way this music is taught by Africans. Emergence of beat tapping is one of them.

Sport & Music

Mike TYSON and adoptive father Cus D'AMATO
Some of us feel very uncomfortable with this association.
In my personal experience this common ground was first obvious in practice. I played the violin when I was a kid and working on the feeling of the down-bow was very similar to feel the weight of the ball on my feet when performing controls. Analogies about practice routines are generally well accepted. It becomes more delicate when it goes beyond this aspect.
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Try Yourself With A Bass Djembe

Rhythms, sound, technique…
Sometimes it's just good to play it simple. Time to take some rest with speed, sharp slaps and other killer licks.
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More About My Bell Technique

More bell
The technique I developed on bells to obtain certain embellishments comes from natural effects of relaxed movements. The first thing is to avoid the eight bit sound quality too many people seem to take for a standard. An african bell should not sound like a pen on a desk!
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Liquid Playing

When can we play liquid?
In accompanying situations, basic djembe patterns are expected to be played with a steady groove. I call this "solid" grooves. In other situations - intro, long rests from the soloist, solo situation - playing "liquid" is a better choice.
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Coordination VS Independence

Weedie BRAIMAH on dununs
I believe choice of words can do a lot to clarify what a student should look for. That's why I think educational material talking about "independence" is bringing unnecessary confusion or even worse: unreachable expectations. Independence is a myth that we, musicians, try to make the listener believe in. Students don't need this. Independence is a state of no relationship between different entities. On the contrary coordination is the ability to execute different actions linked by a specific goal. We have only one brain so it's somehow more limited than two separate parts coordinating themselves but there are some tricks that allow the musician to play several parts at once giving the illusion of independence.

This is what Weedie BRAIMAH does on dununs in the above video.
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Djembe Tutorial | Playing On Beats

In some situations masters and beginners play the same patterns.
The most obvious is when playing basic rhythms. There are differences in sound, phrasing and general vision of the music but the patterns are identical. It happens in a solo context too.
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Dunun Tutorial | Dunumba | Kenkeni

The Kenkeni pattern of Dunumba is one of the trickiest rhythms
It will enable you to experience the power of displacement and discover the equal musical value of inner beats in djembe music.
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Playing Together

Playing a djembe music groove together
Doing it without thirty minutes warm-up or discussion is not as easy as it should be for many djembe students. In most cases they have the necessary instrumental knowledge but no method for group working. The one used by native African players...
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