Jonathan Murray - Hand Drum Instructor

Jonathan Murray - Hand Drum Instructor

1 employee
19 years in business

About this pro

I am a hand drum instructor with an eclectic background (West African, Caribbean, Brazilian, Middle-Eastern) of cultural study. Very beginner-friendly, I have introduced thousands of people to playing drums for the first time. I teach beginners classes for djembe, doumbek, conga, kpanlogo and frame drums. I offer intermediate level classes in djembe, conga and tar. I have been teaching group and private classes for over 15 years and develop quality playing through playful approaches. I specialize in teaching students of all ages (ages 3-93).

I enjoy imparting cultural and geographical awareness along with musical knowledge. World drumming has opened doors for me in countries all over the planet and connected me with the best people. Besides being a fun and engaging activity, drumming has the potential to connect people with culture, relieve stress and unite communities. Drumming can enrich, inspire and enliven.

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Columbia, MD 21044
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What is your typical process for working with a new student?

1) Present/Reinforce basic, safe way to play hand drums.

2) Present/Improve sounds on drum.

3) Combine sounds into rhythms, composed and traditional.

4) Combine rhythms into polyrhythm compositions arranged and traditional.

5) Present variations, embellishments and solos.

What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?

Over 15 years experience of teaching hand drumming classes for groups and single students.

Professional Drum Circle Facilitator (17 years). I have worked with groups of children, professionals, and seniors, delivering high-quality rhythm-based programs for teambuilding, wellness and celebration since 2001.

Have studied with master drummers in Nepal (Surrendra Shrestha), Curacao (Johnny Conga), Ghana (Nii Okai Aryettey, Aaron Bebe Sakura) the United States (Mamady Keita, Arthur Hull) and Nigeria (Ayodapo Oyelana, Gbemi Ayanladun).

Do you have a standard pricing system for your lessons? If so, please share the details here.

I charge $50 per 45 minute private session taught from my home in Columbia, MD.

I charge $65 per 45 minute session for 2 people (parent-child, friends, spouses).

I offer discounts for lesson packs (i.e. pack of 10 private lessons for $400).

Travel charges apply for lessons done in student's home.

How did you get started teaching?

Began teaching hand drumming classes in 2002 when I recognized a gap in cultural music teaching in my area. Taught adult classes for Howard Community College and for Howard County Rec and Parks; also ran children's drumming programs at Baltimore's Port Discovery Children's Museum.

What types of students have you worked with?

I have taught drumming to children, adults and seniors for the past 17 years. Have worked with students in home school groups and public schools.

Adult students have included people from all walks of life and ages. It's never too late to learn to play hand drums! Some adult students have been professional musicians who were looking to improve their rhythmical sensibilities. Some adult students have been overworked professionals looking to relieve stress; others to connect with culture.

What advice would you give a student looking to hire a teacher in your area of expertise?

Ask your teacher:

Have they trained in diverse ethnic styles of drumming, or only one?

Have they studied ethnic traditional rhythms in that culture, or only in this country?

Do they work with all age groups, or just one (i.e. only children)?

Do they show up on time, prepared to teach?

Mostly, do you feel comfortable learning from them?

Lessons offered

Drum Lessons Djembe Lessons Conga Drums Lessons Hand Drums Lessons Percussion Lessons