Rhythm Hall, Bldg 5 @ the Howe Center
Biofeedback research has shown that the drumbeat alters brainwave patterns, increasing Alpha (a light meditative brainwave), and dramatically reduces stress. The drum’s power as a tool for wellness has long been acknowledged among indigenous populations, and has recently been explored by a variety of modern practitioners and researchers.
Drumming induces deep relaxation, lowers blood pressure, and reduces stress, which, according to current medical research, contributes to nearly all disease and is a primary cause of such life-threatening illnesses as heart attacks, strokes, and immune system breakdowns. A recent study found that a program of group drumming helped reduce stress and employee turnover in the long-term care industry and might help other high-stress occupations as well.
Drumming together is a joyful activity that can become a family ritual. With its ancient roots in indigenous culture, the drum appeals to parents and grandparents. The adrenalin rush of sound and self-expression appeals to youth. The wordless communication of drumming simultaneously energizes and calms. The drum's universal allure and accessibility make it an ideal bridge between the generations, as well as among diverse cultures.
Gary Meitrott, founder of Drum Journeys of Earth, has studied with some of the masters, including Babatunde Olatunji, the Godfather of West African Music; YaYa Diallo, Laje Cumara, John Amira, and Don Knaak.
Rhythm is within all of us. It’s inside us as we breathe, as our heart beats, as we walk.
It is in the buildings we live and work in. It’s on the streets where we walk, in the cars we drive.
Rhythm is everywhere.
It’s the earth itself as it turns on its axis through the day and night, through the seasons of the year.
We cannot exist without rhythm.
“Drum fever is sweeping the country as people discover the physical, psychological and spiritual rewards... even for those who can’t read a note of music."
~ Claudia Ricci, The New York Times