Re: Picking Up Music in Kenya
Sweet, dude I think I'm going down in either September or October, too! Are you going with a particular organization or just "freelancing" or whatever?
Thanks, I'll check out the Chernoff book. I have actually been playing hand percussion for a bit longer than drumset, especially djembe. I did a little Youtube research on Kenyan trad music and found a lot of drum circle type things. They DID look quite commercialized though, I'm not sure if it was 100% authentic. And I don't think the drums were djembes, at least not the traditional djembe I'm used to.
I'm under the impression that you're well-educated in African music/culture, so maybe you can verify or discredit this. I hear two terms bounced around a lot when researching Kenyan music: Benga, and Reggae. From what I can hear, Benga is like a 16th note rhythm section thing, almost like a Samba. And of course, Reggae is reggae.
The compound I will be working on actual houses an "evangelistic brass school," which apparently learns young Kenyans in trumpet and trombone for the purposes of playing simple praise choruses in some of the more secluded towns and villages. I am hoping that I'll get the opportunity to help teach some of this stuff, because from pictures that I've seen, I'll be able to teach the music theory classes, no sweat.