Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Sounds of Malcolm X Park

If you follow The 42 Bus on Twitter you have probably noticed me talking up Sundays at Malcolm X Park. More often than not on a Sunday evening, I am there. Usually listening to the drum circle, but also walking the grounds, watching ducks in the fountain, eating snacks on a blanket or just hanging out. As I have said before, it is one of the best free activities in the District.

The drum circle jams are organic. That is, each performance is made up of 2-3 dozen separate, individual performances of single drummers. The only structure is the structure formed during each specific jam; it happens on the fly. Jams can last 90 seconds or 15 minutes. Each is unique and by nature, none are repeated. That's the beauty.

If you want to see it live, come to Malcolm X Park (aka Meridian Hill Park) at 16th and Euclid Sts NW on any Sunday, weather permitting. From about 5:00PM until 8:00PM there are drummers making music at the southwest corner of the top level, near the Joan of Arc statue. Here's one I recorded recently.