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Kenya S. Masala is a national corporate and youth development trainer and human development consultant.

He is co-director of the Source Consulting Group, based in Austin Texas

Official website for this book.

Kenya's conducting work in the circle is striking. His movements are bold, big and easy to read. Watch Kenya conduct drum circle
(There's a nice audio jam after the video portion.)

He is also a REMO endorsee

We also recommend:

Rhythm Play™ Trainings are planned for spring 07. Read More


Rhythm Play by Kenya Masala
Book Review by Eric Stuer


Kenya's book is very accessible. His approach here is to do a lot with simple and lightweight equipment.

This book, Rhythm Play, is a collection of over 3 dozen activities, designed to be done with just four types of easily schleppable instruments: egg shakers, drumsticks, Boomwhacker® plastic tubes, and REMO Sound Shapes. This makes it very useful for those facilitators who are in a pinch for space, or who, for one reason or another, don't want to use full sized drums in their rhythm presentations. He gets a ton of mileage out of simple drumsticks, an item some facilitators steer clear of altogether.

(At right: Gabriela and Kenya Masala of the Source Consulting Group)

Before descriptions of the activities, there is a useful section on the various formations a group can take to perform an activity, such as concentric circles, one big circle, parallel lines, conglomerate, and so on. Then there are exercises that get folks off on the correct foot rhythmically, get them to focus together, think of the pulse, and for right/left brain integration. Then come plentiful exercises for the eggs, sticks, tubes, and Sound Shapes.

Throughout the book, each exercise has listed the approximate amount of time, instrumentation, optimum group size and/or age level, challenge level, and complete instructions with notes and variations. The audio CD supports the book well, and the playing on the tracks is excellent; We did want to play along..

Some of the exercises are versions of classics I have seen elsewhere, but it is still good to read his unique descriptions. Kenya makes extensive use of shakers, for example, and the shaker pass (also a feature of Health Rhythms and various other trainings) is one of the activities in this book, but Kenya has customized it, and gives variations upon it. He notes that his version of shaker pass is adapted from Barry Bernstein, so who knows, perhaps that is the actual original source of the now classic shaker pass.

In Health Rhythms, they use fruit for their shaker pass. Kenya uses eggs. "Take an egg, pass an egg" has a nice rhythm to it, and he uses it wisely. "Egg" is highly usable in rhythmic vocal phrases.

[grin] stu: I've got it! I'll use all banana shakers: "nanner nanner nanner nanner" ...Nope. forget it, Stu. You can't beat 'egg'. 'Egg' rules. "Egg, shake an egg, shake an egg" . What onomatopoeia...even in double time: "egg an egg an egg an egg"

He uses food well. (LOL) In one other exercise he uses foods in the kitchen to generate vocal rhythms. This one is wonderful for big fans of food such as myself. We have already used this one in a Temple Texas elementary school, with good results. I ate twice as much as usual after the gig, too. Went straight to the cafeteria..

But no, SERIOUSLY, folks, this is a very well written, handy little book, with lots of useful ideas. We do recommend it, and we are looking forward to trying more of the activities this coming season.. Thanks Kenya..

Stu at Rhythmweb
December 2007




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