Drums in New Guinea are important musical instruments that are widely used for almost every type of traditional ceremony. Drums can also be sacred objects played in pairs that are the voices of Ancestral Spirits
There are different types of drums, the most common is the hourglass form drum that is played by a single person hitting the drum skin with their hand making a booming percussion sound. I have been in Men’s Ceremonial Houses where 6- 10 men are all playing their drums & signing in unison which sounds amazing!
Slit Gong Drums are widely used in the Sepik & Ramu River Area of New Guinea, almost every village has Slit Gong Drums that also allow communication between different villages. There is also the monumental vertical Slit Gong Drums from Vanuatu
Water Drums are sacred ceremonial musical instruments that were used in pairs along with pairs of Sacred Flutes that were used in an enclosure where women & the non-initiated can’t see them, a hole was dug in the ground and filled with water, the Drum is handled by two men each holding one side of the handle the drum is pushed into the water and then quickly pulled out creating an eerie whooshing sound caused by suction which is said to be the voice of powerful ancestral spirits. Please have a look at my Exhibitions Gallery https://www.oceanicartsaustralia.com/exhibition-and-publications/
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