One Candomble Ceremony later... my observations and reflections, in no particular order
1. Candomble is heavy.
2. The drumming is fantastic. Very odd sometimes, very strange. But it peaks artfully.
The peak is led by the increasing pace, volume and, importantly, complexity of the rhythms.
I’ve been to ecstatic dance sessions, like Urubu, where the drummers try to create a peak by drumming harder and faster. It doesn’t work. The rhythms must also develop.
(Ha! Just had my first proper laugh with a Brazilian. [Feels like I’m describing an interaction with a pubic hair style]. It’s cheered me up no end. Travelling alone in a town where literally no-one speaks your language, and you can’t speak theirs well enough to joke with them, is totally rubbish. Rosie, the café lady at the bus stand café, and me just had a real joke, of which I was of course the butt, don’t mind, cracked us both up, nice.)
Back to last night... I shared a cab home with the drummer, 2am, wide awake. He was in his twenties, had been playing / studying drumming for 17 years, now he only plays for Candomble, and that’s all he does. It’s a total skill.
I wonder who in the UK can create rhythms and peaks like that, on drums made out of materials that resonate with our insides rather than our temples – wood and skin, not snare drums. I’d like to find them.