Yesterday I went to a drumming class with my friend Vera. She has been going for several months to a class in Warren, RI. The teacher is an American. There were 5 of us students. It was a very different vibe from what I am used to with Sidy.
First, the pace was very laid back. The class is scheduled for an hour and a half, but apparently usually goes on for much longer. We spent lots of time just sitting between playing. Chilling, I think, would be the technical term. The structure of the class was that we worked on a single piece and learned the parts for djembe 1 and 2, plus the dunun and bell. Then, when we were able to keep that going for awhile, the teacher played some solo phrases.
For me, it was a good challenge because it is normally hard for me to pick up a new rhythm the first time I try it. Since these were accompaniment parts,they were simpler than what I usually do with Sidy... so within a few minutes I was able to play them. At one point, I was playing the djembe 2 part on my own, while the teacher played the duns and the other students played djembe 1. I was excited that I could get back on track when I messed it up a couple of times. I just picked it right back up.
I even tried the dunun at one point... but chickened out when it came to actually holding the rhythm for the whole class. I just didn't feel comfortable with it yet. Maybe next time!