Monday, 5 January 2015

A Year at the Venice Beach Drum Circle in Photos & Videos (2014-’15)

Life is very much like a drum circle; those who drum, those who dance to the beat of the drum, and the audience who watches them both.

Since I arrived to Los Angeles in March 2014, and the Venice Beach Drum Circle has become my one and only weekly outing... and outlet. I spent the first months between taking pictures, dancing, and drumming whenever I had to chance to use someone’s drum or the few times I rented one for the day. I had already shared my drumming adventures and you can check this earlier article, Full Moon Drumming, as well as shorter posts Here and There.

Then finally, I made the bold move and bought a djembé. By that time, I had made lots of friends from that glorious gathering. Many eclectic, multicultural, like-minded people from different backgrounds getting together once or twice a week for such a magnificent event. To each their own cause to attend. Some go to detach, some to heal, some to let out frustrations. Others, to play music ― dance and party ― or simply to enjoy the energy and connect with fellow Earthlings.

Enough with words, enjoy this collection of captures I have taken throughout this past year. Also check the sequel (link at the very end) as well as this Photo Album from more updated photos.

Tom on the Djembé and Andy in his famous red shirt holding
the shaker on the far right

Tim (right) was the first to lend me his djembé to try, then it was Ronald (left).
I instantly knew that this was it.
Alex from Russia (left), Freddy in black holding his cap, next to him sitting down is Joseph,
in green T is Toby, and Kevin in white T. Mike is in the middle practicing his soulful singing and sweet Kadi in blue from his back (right).
El Maestro ― Jack, apparently, is from Lebanon and we often chat in Arabic
Saturdays are usually smaller and more contained than Sundays as it’s less people so we
can hear each other and there is more connection
I was sitting down drumming while closing my eyes then I opened them to find this
smiling clown girl ahead. Had to get it on camera.
Paul first on the left, then Joseph, then Tom, then Dan on the chair, then the guy with the
Palestinian flag, and finally Steve on the far right

Lydia dancing to the tunes, Edward on the guitar (his back), Eddy in blue T (far left),
and Scott in sunglasses and jeans
A common site at the circle  a baby left to explore and enjoy while being monitored by
their parents
Not Venice Beach, but Dockweiler on the full Moon

Luke on the far left and the the band

Eddy with his mummy bandage (left), Steve in a hat, Todd drumming in the middle in grey shirt, Carlos in beanie and glasses, and Miguel in funky haircut and black T-shirt (right)

Tim (left), Feather, and Ronald

Let me play you the song of my people

Somewhat at the beginning when I rented a drum for the day

Djembé View
Celebrating Existence

One of the last Saturdays of 2014

Breed’em young

Alien looking at Scott and the other Paul is sitting down in the middle on the
very back in black top and shades

Spark of Light
on the first Saturday of 2015

The Tribe in 2015


Shiny Happy People
One additional thing I love about drumming is the chance to give people a good time
and a reason to smile, dance and celebrate.

Tribalism in January 

From left to right: Louis (yellow shakers), Edward (white beard and white cap), Mike, Tim,
Feather, Alex (white shirt), Paul (behind Alex in yellow T-shirt), Louis, Dan, Andy (red shirt),
and Steve in the middle.

Eddy, Louis, Louis, and Carlos

How the famous Venice Beach Drum Circle starts every weekend

We The Sovereign

Bring On The Dancers” ― Sonia here in the middle

The boys in full swing

The Zone by David Healey Photography
The next four photos were kindly sent to me by Francis Ybanez, a new friend I met at the circle.
I rarely had any since I’m either behind the lens or the drum. 

Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.

Another baby roaming around in full freedom


This one was taken by a man who parked his bike to listen to me playing solo on
a Wednesday afternoon when I was accompanied by Blackjack

And finally the most recent video shot by my new bungalow-mate, Jarkko from Finland

― June 7th, 2015

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