Drumming for Peace helps many find rhythm

Michael Dupree and his wife, Phyllis, felt the need to participate in a Saturday morning drum circle dubbed “Drumming for Peace.”


Given some societal woes, Michael Dupree, a food service professional turned educator, said he felt inclined to bring his family.

The drum circle was led by Not Gaddy, an Augusta drum instructor, and was sponsored by his organization I Drum 2 U.

“Peace can come in various forms,” Gaddy said. “We can drum for world peace, but people also need inner peace.

“This is not a class on teaching anyone anything,” he said. “It’s a very old technique which harkens to Nai­ro­bi, west Africa. Drum­ming is a way of releasing stress.”

Gaddy said his drum circle offers no correct or incorrect way to perform.

“Once you add a right or wrong method, that’s the beginning of a stressful moment. We let people work the drums using their own technique. If it works for them, it’s correct,” he said.

Julie Evonna, 53, told why she came from Aiken to Fellowship Churches United headquarters on Laney Walker Boule­vard Extension.

“It was a way for me to stay connected with a long-distance friend who also participates in drum circles,” said Evonna, who is a member of an Aiken drum circle.

Aiken resident Claire Horne, 56, said she equates the drum circle to “communicating with Mother Nature.”

Michael Dupree said it’s vital that his 8-year-old son, Tomas, and granddaughters Aneres, 5, and Ashlyn, 3, experience the drum circle.

“Drums are the rhythms of life, and it’s a goal for all of us to exude a positive energy throughout life,” he said. “Now’s a great time for the children to learn this art form.”

Gaddy, who is a minister at Fellowship United Church, told participants to expect Drumming for Peace events on the first Saturdays of future new years.