Nigerian musician preserving the art of the talking drum


Nigerian artist Ayan De First promotes Yoruba culture by continuing a family legacy of the talking drum which was passed on from generations before him.

The instrument is carved from wood and covered on both ends by animal skin. Strings are used to hold together the skin and for tuning.

[The] “talking drum is a musical instrument that mimics the language or interprets human voices. This is a magical instrument, very valuable and useful because we use it to speak different languages, to appreciate people, to call names, to do whatever you want to do with it,” he told the BBC’s Gbolahan Macjob.

He said he played the instrument to the British royal family during the Queen’s Golden Jubilee celebration in 2002.

“Yoruba culture is being much more appreciated and embraced. My message to everyone and our Yoruba people is that our culture – we have to preserve it, protect it and value it more.”