Thursday, December 2, 2010

Going Back to the Source

Instead of getting into the myriad of things that have occurred in my private life, some of which influenced my sabbatical from this open forum, I prefer to get right into the act of sharing of some good roots drumming with all of you friends. For as much as I love the challenge that one gets with the creative interpretation of jazz and avant-guard performances, there's so much soul-reward in these kind of grooves that it's worth soaking this in on a regular basis!

This is the kind of drumming that I moved to NYC to be a part of in 1976. I'm talking specifically about the Bata drumming. The other conical (conga-shaped) drums and rhythms was also reminiscent of the kind of drumming that was happening in Washington D.C. during the 70's, and which I had a lot of fun participating in. And, at the time, while there were some "old-timers" who used to always drum at the fountains on Dupont Circle and I can remember a guy by the name of "Chico" and another "clean-looking" dude who I came to superficially know as "Charlie", and their thing was a medium-tempo-to-slow guaguanco. And, it was tasty, with Chico always drumming as the alpha dog.

But, my main drum buddies back then were Leo Leobons, Chuck Cuyjet and the Puertorican reps consisting of Raul Rivera, Coqui Perez, with the Cuban brothers (Chino and Micco) filling up the reserves. Add to this the sudden introduction of Simbo Wu-Shu (Craig Johnson), Bird, Obanjoco, John D. and my pad always had constant drumming going on! That time was a precious laboratory for every kind of drumming possible! And then there was another Latin drumming contingent in D.C., up by the Omega Restaurant composed of Rafael Solano, Ruddy, Bacho Africano, and sopme other brothers who we would go and shed with, from time to time.

But, this is the kind of drumming tht I'm talking about...