Drums and percussion instruments have distinct personalities, in a sense, which can directly affect the drummer's ability to play within a drum circle, recording studio or on stage. Because of these differences in instruments, a drummer may face a difficult decision deciding which drum or percussion instrument is best for his or her particular style. Musical and drumming talent aside, one of the best ways to find your percussion soul mate is through the age-old practice of astrology. Below are some recommendations* for the perfect drum based on the personality traits of sun signs and drum temperament.
ARIES – I AM (March 21st - April 20th)
Aries are impulsive, and have probably been told that others do exist on the planet, but that has less importance than whatever it is that these rams were saying before being rudely interrupted. Aries are quick-witted, unstoppable, confident and dynamic people that most people turn to for a stinging dose of reality. As such, the Gong accurately represents the Aries personality; its loud, its alarming, and it leaves an distinct impression while quickly exiting to let all the other instruments do all the work. Conversely, can play the final note of a song, assuring it has the last word in any musical conversation.
TAURUS – I HAVE (April 21st - May 21st)
Taurus is known for possessing a stubborn nature that loves stability in all forms. These people may have warm hearts and endless loyalty, but it's a chore to get past their unbending personality that is usually perceived as lazy or dogmatic. For these determined individuals, the Bougarabou is a drum that expresses the steadfast nature of the Taurus. The Bougarabou backs up the Djembe with its lower, bass melody, providing a rhythmic foundation that changes only slightly, sometimes only when the Taurus realizes the rest of the drums have moved on.
GEMINI - I THINK (May 22nd - June 21st)
Known best for the warring personalities within, Geminis are constantly overthinking everything while simultaneously changing their minds. These twins are inspirational, spontaneous and lively and best suited to the bongos, which provide a wealth of upbeat sounds and rhythmic communication for the Gemini. This set of drums give Geminis a creative way to express their intelligent, yet confused personalities in a manner that adds youth and energy to the rhythms played. The bongos also allow for the internal war of the Gemini to reign free through the rapid succession of beats that may only make sense to the Gemini in question.
CANCER - I FEEL (June 22nd - July 22nd)
As a zodiac sign that feeds on emotion, Cancers are romantic, caring individuals that can be relied upon for long, nurturing conversations that often inspire tears… usually from the Cancer. Attuned to the moon and water, these crabs retreat quickly into their shells for protection from the realities of life, but are always ready with a hug or words of comfort for others. The Udu, a pottery drum, calls to the Cancer's vulnerable nature, giving these sentimentalists the ability to create beautiful, liquid sounds from the Udu’s fragile foundation.
LEO - I WILL (July 23rd - August 23rd)
Few can match the showmanship and talent of a Leo, even when not performing before an audience. Leos are driven to find the spotlight, wherever it may be, and if their artistic abilities are not acknowledged, the roar of the scorned lion can be heard for miles. Djembes are a fitting drum for Leos, bringing unmatched style, sound and popularity to any drum circle or recording session. The Djembe is also a perfect solo instrument, allowing Leos the chance to participate in a community event and still remain the center of attention.
VIRGO - I ANALYZE (August 24th - Sept. 22nd)
Virgos are the planners and organizers of the world, fitting information into neat little boxes that make sense only to Virgos and few other earth signs. The rest of the zodiac either ignores the boxes or nods sympathetically in an attempt to make Virgos feel better about their need for order. Cajon drums are the symmetrical and practical evolution of a culture that repurposed materials into musical boxes. This Virgo-Cajon connection is obvious and may delight a Virgo enough to encourage an actual emotional response, but will likely result in a large display of perfectly stacked Cajons.
LIBRA - I BALANCE (Sept. 23rd - Oct. 23rd)
Striving for balance in all things, Libras also appreciate the finer things in life. These easygoing, romantic people can see all sides of situations and manage to evade many decisions through careful examination, vague responses and other non-committal measures. Dhol drums are ornate, two-sided drums that are carefully balanced across the body and played while the drummer is in motion. These drums give Libras the ability to feel snazzy and cultural while striking each side of the drum equally, in order to maintain diplomatic style, even while drumming.
SCORPIO - I DESIRE (Oct. 24th - Nov. 22nd)
A Scorpio is a passionate person full of seductive and antagonistic energy. These people are the musicians that bring out the heat in harmonies and the aggression in rhythm, while professing angst and adoration through lyrics and spoken word. Scorpios are also prone to obsession and will need a drum or percussion instrument that can keep up. Mysterious, moody and magnetic, like the Scorpio, the Doumbek may be the only drum that can play the Scorpio’s song of love, hate, desire and heartache. This is especially true when surrounded by beautiful belly dancers at a Hafla.
SAGITTARIUS - I AIM (Nov. 23rd - Dec. 21st)
Adventurous and truth-seeking, the Sagittarius finds intellectual challenges pivotal to a happy life. Sagittarius not only create and discover, but also love to explain in minute detail the ways of the world, at least as they see it. Honest, versatile and unafraid, Sagittarius may find that Congas are best suited to their need to conquer complex rhythms and show off how brilliant they are, long after the rest of the band has stopped playing. Sagittarius make great teachers and philosophers, especially while drumming, when the volume of their knowledge is diminished solely by the sound of the rhythms played.
CAPRICORN - I USE (Dec. 22nd - Jan. 20th)
If you want something done right, ask a Capricorn to do it. Diligent and determined, Capricorn can outwit and outlast the rest of the world, mostly because they don’t want to hear what anyone else has to say. For these rigid, unbending whirlwinds of dedication, the Didgeridoo provides a challenge that can only be mastered through countless hours of exacting, sometimes painful study of breath control. Capricorns dig a challenge, and the Didge is nothing, if not a challenge.
AQUARIUS - I KNOW (Jan. 21st - Feb. 18th)
Focus is not a strong point of the Aquarian. These explorers enjoy learning new things and bring an unusual and bizarre charm to any gathering. In a drum circle, Aquarians will test out all of the instruments available, but will likely find the Kalimba of greatest interest. Kalimbas are quirky, just like Aquarius, and somewhat out of place in a drum circle, just like Aquarius. The music box sound of the Kalimba provides a creative outlet for these eccentric humanitarians, providing at least five-minutes of rest for the rest of the circle before the Aquarius jumps up to dance, sing or take over someone else's drum.
PISCES - I BELIEVE (Feb. 19th - March 20th)
Dreamy and shy, Pisces holds the emotions of the world in their fishy hearts. These sensitive creatures prefer to rely on the heart rather than logic and reality and can get so lost in emotion, they may swim in confusing circles of their own making. Expressing this worldly compassion, the Tablas are a canvas on which the Pisces may freely swim the waters of love, despair and anything in between. The Tablas give Pisces the ability to beat two different rhythms on two different drums, satisfying their duality on a musically spiritual level. Tablas also allow Pisces to get lost in the fantasy of music, so as an important safety measure, Pisces should never be left alone to follow the beat of their own drum, or they may never return.
*For entertainment purposes only.