I didn’t expect to be learning about the origins of reed and horn instruments this week, but Tuesday morning at Camp Harbor View hundreds of campers and I learned about the history of a variety of instruments, as well as their uses. This Tuesday formed the fourth week in the summer long Explore World Arts series presented by the New Center for Arts and Culture at Camp Harbor View (For more information on the program, please see the New Center’s previous blog post here).
When I arrived at the camp, percussion group Tribal Rhythms had already set up several very large drums, as well as their table covered with small percussion and wind instruments. For the rest of the morning and afternoon they played complex African drum pieces for the campers, for a few songs handing out percussion sticks and shakers so the campers could also be part of the music-making. Group leader Curtis Jones demonstrated a variety of instruments, from ram’s horns and Tibetan cymbals to gongs, explaining where each of them came from and then showing off their unique sounds. After the show campers went up on stage and got some drumming lessons from the group members, all excited to show off their individual drums.