The great drummer, Tony Williams, once said, “Playing fast around the drums is one thing. But to play music, to play with people for others to listen to, that’s something else. That’s a whole other world.” Most of us will never approach the level of mastery of a Tony Williams but that isn’t the point. The point is to enter that whole other world by playing music with other people regardless of skill level. It’s about getting lost in the rhythms while connecting with the people around you.
On Saturday, July 10 at 1:00 PM, arts educator, Cornell Coley will lead an outdoor drum circle at the Kingston Public Library in the tent on the Summer Street lawn. There will be enough hand drums and small percussion for up to 30 people. This program is for all ages, and if you have your own hand drums or percussion, you are encouraged to bring them. You’re also welcome to just come and watch.
Mr. Coley’s drum circles stand out as accessible, challenging, culturally rich, grounded, multi-level, spiritual, upbeat, funky and social. His training is informed by leaders in drum circle facilitation as well as his studies with masters in African and Latin rhythms in Africa, Brazil and Cuba. He moves easily back and forth between “feeling the groove” and playing time-tested traditional rhythms.
Born in Kingston, Jamaica of Cuban and Jamaican parents, Cornell Coley, M. Ed. is an in-demand arts educator. He holds a BA from Tufts University, an M.Ed from Cambridge College, studied cultural anthropology at UCLA and lived in Ghana, West Africa for one year studying dance. He has also traveled to Cuba and Brazil to conduct research in the cultural arts.