The Drummin' Fun Mission
Empowering Companies, Teams, Classes, and Communities
through FUN with Rhythm and Play.
Drummin' Fun's mission is to bring people of all ages and backgrounds together to create the joyful noise of a rhythm orchestra using the model of facilitated drum circles.
Drummin' Fun's team-building interactive corporate rhythm circles are held at the location of the client's choice. We bring a West African Drum Ensemble with Master Drummers from Africa and Rhythm Circle Facilitators to each event bringing a drum for each participant. With our deftly facilitated interactive entertainment your company, school, team, or group is creating beautiful music within a few minutes.
We provide a supervised, structured, constructive, and creative environment in which people of all ages can come together and interact with music, instrument-making, storytelling, art, and dance encouraging an increased sense of self-worth through personal accomplishment.
Our Playshops and Programs
Drummin' Fun offers programs tailored to your needs.
Facilitated Community Rhythm Circles - Group Drumming for team building events, corporate conferences, schools, artist-in-residency programs, private parties, and all kinds of social and political events.
Passport To Rhythm: Hand Drumming Around the World - In a matter of a few minutes Drummin' Fun can teach anyone how to play a variety of hand drums and percussion from all around the world.
Found Soundz - Creative playshops where participants make instruments out of everyday, found objects and then play together in a Facilitated Rhythm Circle.
Bucket Brigade - Takes the idea of Found Soundz one step further. Everyone plays Found Soundz - mostly buckets of varying sizes, as well as pot lids and shakers. Bucket Brigadiers learn simple parts and patterns found in most cultures around the world, how to move and parade while drumming.
Who We Are
Janet Planet is a drummer, drum educator, drumcircle facilitator, and mbira player who has studied with master drummers Babtunde Olatunji, Mamady Keita, Arthur Hull, Paulo Mattioli, Francis Awe, Kwashi Amevuvar, and Meia Noite; and with mbira masters Ephat Mujuru, Stella Chiweshe, Cosmas Magaya, Forward Kwenda, Tute Chigamba, Ambuya Beauler Dyoko, Erica Azim, and Russ Landers. Janet is a founding member of the Los Angeles Women's Drum Core and The Luna Party! and has performed on stage with Babatunde Olatunji, Kwashi & His African Beat, Meia Noite's Midnight Drums, Lula & Afro-Brasil, and as a solo mbira-d'vadzimu player.
The multi-talented Ms. Planet is also a writer, photographer, webgoddess, filmmaker, and ethnomusicologist with a B.S.in Communications/Speech-Theater who has attained both local (in Southern California, USA) and international acclaim as the Founder (since 1995) and Editor of the award-winning African Music Encyclopedia.
Online since 1988, Ms. Planet a long-time computer geek and the moderator of many popular listserves focusing on different aspects of African music and percussion: The African Music Digest, The African Beat Digest, the Djembe-L, and the Drumcircles list. She is a Contributing Music Editor for AfricaOnline.com and africanbeat.com and freelances for other publications and clients.
Kwashi Amevuvor - Master Drummer from Ghana, educated and taught at the University of Ghana in Accra; teaches and performs all over the world.
Koffi Afandalu - Artist from Togo, plays balafon, keyboards, drums, and mbira.
Michele Martin is a Life Credentialed Educator (pre-school through adults) who has taught in the Los Angeles Unified School system for over 26 years. The scope of Ms. Martin's responsibilities include introducing music to her students through the drum circle model. Ms. Martin is an experienced Self-Esteem Facilitator who has worked with Jack Canfield (of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series of books) for over 18 years.
Michael Spears - Young Master Drummer and awesome Djembefola (djembe master) who has gigged all over North America.
And more! - Whenever possible we bring visiting Master Drummers from Africa with us...it just depends on who's in town for your gig.
Tailored specifically for your event.
Corporate Team Building - Group Drumming can easily be understood as a metaphor for team-building. A company who drums together will work together as a team. Team work and high self-esteem is the result after experiencing the connection and cooperation that comes from drumming in a group. We work with instruments ranging from found and created (self-made) to traditional drums and percussion from many different cultures throughout Africa and the African Diaspora such as the djembe, dununs, kplanlogo, sabar, timbau, surdu, riq, tar, doumbek, as well as shakere, agogo, clave, tamborin, balafon, and mbira. We focus on using the model of Group Drumming as it relates to teamwork and problem-solving: experiential learning to work together as a part of a productive whole.
Educational Classroom Initiative - Creative playshops called "Passport To Rhythm" where participants learn about hand drumming form all over the world.
Teaching kids about drumming helps to increase self-esteem; encourage team-building and peer-bonding; enhance creativity and creative thinking; improve coordination, focus, timing, concentration and cooperation; release anger; increase stress-relief; and directs energy into an expressive and constructive physical activity for kids of all abilities.
This is especially important for both the adults and the children of today who see violence and problems all around them. By helping children develop their self-esteem and encouraging peer-bonding through using music, Drummin' Fun strives to help to bring down the walls that divide us all.
We offer artist-in-residency programs, lecture-demonstrations, participatory playshops, ongoing weekly Classes, Community Rhythm Circles, and Storytelling. We can customize programs for any age and skill level.
Found Soundz - Creative playshops combining fun, play, rhythm games and art. Participants make instruments out of everyday, found objects and then play together in a Facilitated Rhythm Circle.
The combined skills of the Drummin' Fun staff enable the instructors to facilitate creativity using music, storytelling, writing, dance, and art in a fun and playful hands-on experience.
Health and Wellness - Group drumming brings a better sense of well-being and all around good health. This has been recently proven in a study done by neurologist Barry Bittman of the Mind-Body Wellness Center in Meadville, Pennsylvania. Bittman gathered a group of 10 people and had them beat hand drums for an hour while a music facilitator conducted. Afterward, Bittman took blood samples. He found the drummers had heightened levels of immune cells called natural killer cells that seek out and destroy both cancer cells and cells infected by viruses. A control group that read in silence experienced no such upsurge.
We have personally witnessed the health benefits of group drumming and enjoy working with various communities with health challenges. Anyone can connect using rhythm, regardless their situation. Drummin'Fun has specially designed programs for different populations.
Prison Initiative - With the attitude that prison doesn't have to be a one-way road, Drummin' Fun enjoys bringing their drumcircle to prisons where they focus on self-esteem and working together. Respect for each individual in the circle is stressed though never mentioned as such. Group drumming can help socialize hard-to-reach groups or gangs giving them a model of how to work together towards a common goal which can be he first step in learning how to become a contributing member of society.