Drums have long been a tight knit part of various cultural/ethnic groups in Nigeria including the Yorubas, Hausas, and other groups. It is used, sometimes alongside other indigenous instrument as means of communication and or entertainment and comes in various shapes and sizes, each with its own use and sound. They are usually made out from carved out wood with leather hide fastened on one opening and adorned with various embellishments and are used by beating with a specially made stick or with the hands at different strengths and slants to emit varying distinguished sound. This important component of our national and indeed continental heritage portended the founding of the first ever drums festival with the theme of Reviving Our Rich Culture Through The Drums And Promoting Our Tourist Attraction Sites.
The Nigerian Drums Festival held at the Ogun State Cultural Centre through the 19th -22nd of April 2016 and it was one of epic proportions. This maiden edition showcased the richness of the Nigerian cultural diversity with participation from different states, each endowed with its own unique style, performance and antics.
The event marked a watershed in the trending revival of our potent but vastly untapped tourism industry in Nigeria through our rich heritage as was reiterated by speakers at the event and custodians of the Nigerian cultural heritage. Identifying this revitalization as a wind of change blowing around the country, The Ooni of Ife, His Imperial Majesty, Oba Adeyeye Eniitan Ogunwusi added thus:
“Drums are very important and very common musical instruments in Africa and we should not joke with them; we should continue to work for the unity of Yoruba nation, Nigeria and the continent of Africa. Today, we are very proud that we are rejuvenating our dead culture, heritage and tradition; it is a very good starting point and we should continue to capitalize on festivals like this and continue to feature them.” The Alake of Egba, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo also implied that it was high time we went back to our roots and that we must never abrogate our culture as we can use culture to generate a lot of income as against our overreliance on crude oil.
Also present at the event were Governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State
Ara, The Female Talking Drummer
The Late Hubert Ogunde Band ignites nostalgia in the audience