Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Top 5 Books about Drumming for Therapy

Drum circles and group drumming have experienced huge growth over the last decade. There are many music therapists who use the power of drumming to help their individual clients or different kinds of groups from corporate employees to kids in special education. There are so many different ways to use drums and drumming in therapy that it has been hard to find one authoritative book on the subject. Here are my top 5 favorite handbooks on using drums in therapy. Each book has its strengths and adds to the knowledge base. All of them are well written, easy to read and have many great pictures and illustrations:

Tataku: The Use of Percussion in Music Therapy

Bill Matney has put together a great book that brings together instruction about how to play instruments and a guide about facilitating drum circles. He has included specific references for working with different types of populations.

The Healing Power of the Drum.
Robert Lawrence uses his book to explore many case examples of using drums in therapeutic situations. He also provides some history and foundation for the use of drums in wellness.

The Art and Heart of Drum Circles.
Christine Stevens is one of the pioneers of synthesizing music therapy and group drumming. Her book is an indispensable tool for the drum circle facilitator. She has years of insight into what can make or break a drum circle.

Together in Rhythm : A Facilitator's Guide to Drum Circle Music.
Kalani is not a music therapist, but he has been doing community drum circles for a very long time. His book comes with a DVD that is very useful in visualizing the leadership/facilitator skills for group drum circles. He also includes transfers for using various techniques with people and children with disabilities or in special situations.

Any of these books will help you to keep the rhythm going!

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