ARTICLE:THE MYSTERY OF TALKING DRUMS: ibisankale kayode
IN AFRICA SOUTHERN PART OF THE SAHARA,DRUMS ARE IMPORTANT AGED MEANS OF COMMUNICATION WHICH REVOLVES ROUND PHYSICAL AND SPIRITUAL MEANS.
THE MYSTERY OF TALKING DRUMS MAKES CONTEMPORARY ANTHROPOLOGIST TO AGREE THAT AFRICA IS THE ROOT OF FUNDERMENTAL DRUMS.
DRUM ARE ENSHRINED IN THE VALUES AND CULTURES OF AFRICANS,
DUNDUN THE TALKING DRUM BELIEVED TO HAVE ORIGINATED FROM OYO AN ANCIENT TOWN IN WESTERN PART OF NIGERIA, OF THE GLOBALLY ACCEPTED INTENSIVE GENIUS AND CREATIVITY OF THE AFRICAN ARTS,..
DUNDUN ADD FLAVOUR,COLOUR AND GLAMOUR TO EVENTS AS IT FACILITATES EMOTIONAL DANCING STEPS WITH MUSICAL AND WORSHIP ATTRIBUTES.
The Yoruba name for the talking drum is Dundun, which mean ”sweet sound.” it is called the talking drum because of its abiltity to emulate the exact tonal sounds of the Yoruba language
The Nigerian Talking Drum is closely tied to the Yoruba language of South Western Nigeria.
The Yoruba language is a tonal language that speaks in proverbs where a word alone will not suffice.The Talking Drum speaks in tones that are adjusted with leather cords that run the length of the drums body.
As it is played it’s tones have the ability to mimic the spoken word, hence it is actually a Talking Drum.
Talking drums are hourglass shaped drums with a drum on each end. They are also known as “waisted drums” since the hourglass shape appears to give the drum a “waist”. The drums are made from animal hide and have leather cords that run along the body attaching to the animal hide at the other end. The size of talking drums varies greatly from the smallest called a “gan gan” to the largest drum – “dun dun”.
The talking drum is held under the left arm and squeezed as the drum is hit with a bent stick. The act of squeezing the drum changes the pitch and gives off various notes. The harder the drum is squeezed the higher pitched the note is. This gives the drum a type of language that can be used to send various messages and meanings to other villages. Certain drum patterns and rhythms are associated with spiritual beings in each tribe.
The talking drum sounds the prayers and blessings of a new day in countless villages across West Africa. The talking drum takes messages miles ahead of its messengers, carrying the messages, greetings, and wishes of its musicians and villages.
Talking drums are one of the oldest instruments used by West African griots and their origins can be traced back to ancient Ghana Empire. These drums spread to Central and South America along with the Caribbean during the slave trade. These drums were once banned from African-Americans because they were being used by the slaves to communicate with other slaves.
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