Sound Files

Audio files for various Shangö projects.

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Beginner Rhythms

Simple to Complex Rhythms



3 Traditional Affrican Songs



“A Lil’ Drummin’, Boyz”

Ricochet 2 Variation

Ni-Yon Matsuri Daiko

Miyake Daiko

Yama Taiko

Scroll down for Document Files.

A useful online resource for time-keeping and practice is the Metronome Online. It's a great timekeepr that plays in your browser and also has mobile apps.

NEW! The Taiko Page

Beginner Rhythms

2/4 (Afro/Middle Eastern Beginner Rhythmn)

2/4 – A basic 4/4 rhythm suitable for African and Middle Eastern drum styles. [ BASE tone-tone Base tone, BASE tone-tone Base tone-tone ] Download 613k

2/4: Decontructed – Tracy Seffers of Shenandoah Rhythm Jam, showed us a very clever breakdown of 2/4 that gives us both ease of learning and great flexibility for improvisation. Download 3 MB


“Children of The Earth” (World/Miz Imani)

Children of the Earth – A Simple pattern with a chant by the same name. Even and formal. [ Base Base tone Base Base tone Base tone ] Download 518k


Simple to Complex Rhythms

Learn to build facility and complex patterns by building with simple basic rhythms.

1-2-3 Rhythm – you might hear around any drum circle. Simple and intuitive – Base, tone-Tone, tone-tone-tone. A variation is to swap in a Base for the second tone.
3-3 Rhythm – a very simple counterpoint of two sets of three – Base, tone-Tone, Base, Tone-tone.

Alternating “Flip” Pattern – Build a complex sounding pattern by playing two simple patterns back-to-back. It’s not really a cheat, it’s a completely legitimate way to build complex rhythms from simple building blocks. Download 4.7 MB

1-4 Rhythm – a slightly syncopated pattern one base, four tones – Base, tone-tone, tone-tone. This is the main pattern used in Olatunji’s Aramelé.
1-2-1 Baseline Rhythm – a base line with a swingy middle eastern vibe, with a filled alternate. Base, tone-base, Tone. The alternate adds one tone - Base, tone-tone-base, Tone.

Three–One Variable Pattern – Make your playing more textured and interesting by swapping out every fourth pattern with a variation, complimentary or contrasting patten. Play three in a row of a pattern, then one of something else. Improvise! Makes you sound like a drumming bad-ass! Download 6.4 MB

In the tracks above, some basic Calls and Breaks are included, so players can get used to hearing them and getting used to sonic drum cues. You're welcome!


African and Middle Eastern Rhythmns

Djole - Traditional African Polyrhythm

Djole – A fully instrumented arrangement of Djole from one of our rehearsal sessions. 23 April 2018. ** Download 2.5 MB


Bolomba - Traditional African Polyrhythm

Bolomba – The three main djembe patterns of Bolomba, at moderate/slow tempo. ** Download 2.6 MB

Bolomba – A simple mix of the three main Bolomba pattens at more natural speed. The three rhythms are faded in and out. ** Download 1.1 MB

Check out a more expert rendition of Bolomba with Amara Diabate and his djembe group Houten(NL) (YouTube)


Three Traditional African Songs
Farewell Song, Ajaja, & Kakelambe

Three African Songs – The Three traditional African songs performed together with the breaks and calls. Download 5.2 MB

Farewell Song (Ghana/McMillan)

Farewell Song Patterns – The Main Dejmbe Pattern, Alternate, Call and Break. Download 2.8 MB

Farewell Song – The Song by itself. Download 1.8 MB

Ajaja (Nigeria/Olatunji)

Ajaja Pattern and Song – The Up-tempo straight 6 Dejmbe Pattern. Followed by the song at tempo. Download 3.3 MB

Kakelambe (Mali/Miz Imanni)

Kakelambe Pattern – The Main Djimbe pattern in 4 and 6. Download 1.6 MB

KakeLambe Song – Kakelambe Song with the break and tempo change. Download 2.3 MB


Fanga (Liberia/Olatunji)

Fanga – Fanga with mixed parts, performed with the calls, breaks and tempo changes. Download 2.3 MB


Chiftatelli (North Aftica/Mid-East)

Chiftatelli – Chiftatelli on the doumbek and Djembe. Download 2.3 MB

Chiftatelli – Chiftatelli Metronome drill, 72BPM on the Doumbek. Download 1.9 MB

Chiftatelli – Chiftatelli Metronome drill, 96BPM on the Djembe. Download 2.3 MB


Rhythmn Projects

A few percussion compositions, and sonic toys that we’ve created and are experimenting with.


“A Lil’ Drummin’, Boyz”

A Lil’ Drummin’, Boyz – Most versons of “The Little Drummer Boy” are notoriouly light on drums for a song about a drummer. Seriously, we are wondering, “Where the heck are the drums?” So here is a more percussion positive upbeat arrangement by Four Winds Earth Chorus we basement recorded back in 2006. I keep wondering about taking on re-mixing this one some day! Download 5.5 MB

See below for a rhythmn and pattens sheet.


Ricochet 2 Variation

A Shangö Original, an experimental layered rhythm with Taiko Accompaniment

The Shangö Ricochet Rythms – composed by group facilitator Bob Margraff, have a back-and-forth stucture of complimentary rhythms.

Main Patterns

Andante - The Two main layers of Ricochet 2 played at a stately 92bpm with metronome. Download 1.8 MB

Moderato - Ricochet 2 patterns played at a moderate 120bpm with metronome. Download 2.3 MB

Allegro - Ricochet 2 played at moderate upbeat 160bpm with metronome. This tempo is about what composer Bob Margraff feels is the rthymn’s “natural” pace. Download 2.6 MB

Flip - The two lead rhythms of Ricochet 2 played alternating, Layer One then Layer Two back and forth – at 92, 120, and 160bpm. Download 4.3 MB

Taiko & Bell Base Line

In one arrangement of the #2 Variation, we added a thumping Taiko Base Line with two tempo bumps to anchor the composition. This recording is the Taiko and Bell alone for the main drums to practice with – Updated 12.7.18 to a more measured and forgiving tempo. [DON don doro Don / DoRo DoRo DoRo DON ] Download 2.3 MB


Japanese Taiko

Ni-Yon Matsuri Daiko

A melding of our base 2/4 rhythm with the taiko classic festival rhythm Matsuri Daiko.

Shangö Drummer Kurt Griffith recently acquired a medium-small Chu Nagano Taiko drum, and discovered that our basic "shakedown" rhythm "2/4" (see above) was nearly identical to the base line (“jiuchi”) of Matsuri Daiko [Festival Drums] that he learned from NY Taiko troupe Soh Daiko. He recorded this blended version - "Ni Yon" is Japanese for "Two Four." Banzai! Download 1.5 MB

A short (1 min) clip of a version of an uptempo section of Ni-Yon Matsuri Daiko for a Drum ’N’ Splash promotion. Just a little messing about in Garage Band. Added tracks for Djembe, Doumbek, Bell and a little more Shime-daiko. A little less chaotoc than the version above. Download 1.9 MB

See also the Corona Matsuri Project for more Matrusri Daiko audio resources.


Miyake Daiko

Explorations of the taiko classic Miyake.

Download 3 MB

Download 3 MB

Miyake is a regional taiko rhythm made famous by Kodo, and since picked up by Taiko groups around the word. We've started experiementing with the shape of it. The two tracks are the Ko-Don Ko-Don baseline or Juichi, and the Main Patterns at two tempos. Kurt is working on learning the solo pieces.

Here's KODO and Kaoru Watanable totally rocking it. (YouTube)


Yama Taiko

Original Taiko Composition - The First Experimental Mix

Kurt's first take at an arranged recording of Yama Taiko, a first mix with all the parts. The Solos were a lot of fun! Played with a number of rhythms on Djembe, Doumbek, Bell, and pow pow drum acting as DjunDjun, and bamboo flute. The jiuchi track is taken from the clever resource Taiko Drum Machine. Headphones or subwoofer reccomended to get the bass notes - always a challence to record.
Download 5.6 MB

Full breakdown and additonal sound files on the Yama Taiko Page.

See The Taiko Pages for more information



Drum Pattens, Lyrics and Documents for various Shangö projects.

Update: Document PDF links will open in a New Window.

The Drum Patterns for Kurt's Three Traditional African Songs.
Download Word DocxDownload/View PDF

The Drum Patterns for the classic Liberian welcome song.
Download Word DocxDownload/View PDF

Shangö’s Gate Beginner Handout
Introduction to Hand Drumming. Basic rhythms, drum technique, 2/4, Kuku, Baladi, Fanga, Chiftatelli – Marggraf/Griffith
Download/View PDF

Djole Rhythm
Drum patterns for the traditional African rhythm Djole
Download/View PDF

Simple Rhythms & Phrases
Drum patterns for basic rhythms: 1-2-3, 3-3, 1-4, 1-2-1, and “Children of The Earth”
Download/View PDF

Rhythm Exercises
Exercise drills for learning to play Whole, Half, Quarter, Eighths, and Sixteenth notes, in African and Taiko nomenclature. Sharpen your chops!
Download/View PDF

2/4 Deconstructed
Tracy Prior Seffers, who teaches world percussion and holds open drum circles, showed us very clever a breakdown of a 2/4 that gives us ease of learning and great flexibility for improvisation. The idea is that the Dominant Hand, (usually the Right), does a repetitive motion with the baseline phrase, and the non-dominant (typically the Left) performs fill beats. Have fun!
Download/View PDF

Heartbeat Rhythms & Drum Songs
Drum patterns based on the Heartbeat Rhythms. 2/4, 2/8, Triplets, “Let the Way be Open,” “Behold,” & “Thunder Beings.”
Download/View PDF

Lyric Sheets are avaialble from the old Four Winds Earth Chorus web site:
Let the Way be Open, Behold, Thunder Beings.

Chiftatelli Rhythm
Drum patterns for the North Aftican/Mid-East Dance Rhythmn
Download/View PDF

A Lil’ Drummin’ Boyz Rhythms & Patterns
Drum patterns and Rhythms for Four Winds Earth Chrous’s percussion positive version of “The Little Drummer Boy.”
Download/View PDF

Japanese Taiko Material

Ni Yon Matsuri Daiko - Festival Drums & 2/4
Drum pattens for the rhythms for Matsuri Daiko with base rhythm 2/4.
Download/View PDF

Miyake Kuchishoga
Drum pattens for Miyake. In japanese syllabic notation. [ Updated 3/9/19 ]
Download/View PDF

Taiko Renshu
Basics of Playing Taiko, taiko kuchishogo and the practice rhythm Renshu.
Download/View PDF

NEW! Taiko Basics PDF
Basics of Playing Taiko, Taiko Glossary, the taiko kuchishogo mnemonic system, a practice rhythm exercise, Renshu, Miyake, & Ni-Yon Matsuri Daiko.
Download/View PDF

Yama Taiko Kuchishoga & Arrangement
Downoadable Drum patterns and experiemntal arrangement for Yama Taiko. A work In progress [ Updated 10.24.19 ] Expect updates and revisions cpariciously. More at the Yama Taiko Page.
Download/View PDF

See The Taiko Page for more information