Samba

Credit and deepest respect to my first drum teacher David Oladunni who taught me this Afro-Cuban rhythm. I've extended his arrangement to include dun duns and more percussion.

>120bpm 4/4  ||:1-&-2-&-3-&-4-&- | 1-&-2-&-3-&-4-&-:||
Shekere      || X.xxX.xxX.xxX.xx | X.xxX.xxX.xxX.xx ||
Block        || ..xx..xx..xx..xx | ..xx..xx..xx..xx ||
Clave   3:2  || x..x..x...x.x... | x..x..x...x.x... ||
Cowbell 2:3  || ..x.x...x..x..x. | ..x.x...x..x..x. ||
Djembe 1     || O-ttB-ttO-StB-tt | O-ttB-ttO-StB-tt ||
Djembe 2     || OOOOO.SS........ | ...BB.BB........ ||
Djembe 3     || Bo-OOs-SSo-OOb-B | Bo-OOs-SSo-OOb-B ||
Djembe 4a or || B...SS..B.....SS | B...SS..B..S.S.. ||
Djembe 4b    || B...SS..B.....SS | B..S.S..B.....SS ||
Bell 1       || x..x..x...x.x... | x..x..x...x.x... || = Clave
 or Block 2  || ..xx..xx..xx..xx | ..xx..xx..xx..xx || = Block
+Kenkeni     || K.......KK.K.... | K.......KK.K.... ||
+Dununba     || ....D.......D... | ....D.......D... ||
Bell 2       || x..x..x...x.x... | x..x..x...x.x... || = Clave
+Sangban     || G.....G.....G... | G.....G.....GG.G ||
(Count)      ||:1-&-2-&-3-&-4-&- | 1-&-2-&-3-&-4-&-:||

Here are the parts written again complete with notation for drummers' left (l) and right (r) hands (and f=flam first left then right).

(Count)      ||:1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &  | 1 & 2 & 3 & 4 & :||
Djembe 1     || O-ttB-ttO-StB-tt | O-ttB-ttO-StB-tt ||
                r rlr rlr rlr rl   r rlr rlr rlr rr

Djembe 2     || OOOOO.SS........ | ...BB.BB........ ||
                rlrlr rl              lr rl
 with ghosts || OOOOO.SSt.ttt.tt | t.tBB.BBt.ttt.tt ||
  is better     rlrlr rlr rlr rl   r rlr rlr rlr rl

(Count)      ||:1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &  | 1 & 2 & 3 & 4 & :||
Djembe 3     || Bo-OOs-SSo-OOb-B | Bo-OOs-SSo-OOb-B ||
                rf lrf lrf lrf l   rf lrf lrf lrf l

Djembe 4a    || B...SS..B.....SS | B...SS..B..S.S.. ||
   or           r   rl  r     rl   r   rl  r  l l     

Djembe 4b    || B...SS..B.....SS | B..S.S..B.....SS ||
                r   rl  r     rl   r  l l  r     rl   
(Count)      ||:1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &  | 1 & 2 & 3 & 4 & :||
+Kenkeni     || K.......KK.K.... | K.......KK.K.... ||
+Dununba     || ....D.......D... | ....D.......D... ||
 D left of K:   r   l   rl rl      r   l   rl rl
 K left of D:   r   r   rl lr      r   r   rl lr

If at any point the leader points at a player or group of players, they should either:

  1. drop out if they are playing, or
  2. come back in if they have dropped out

at the start of the next 2-bar repeat, on the downbeat.

Intro/Outro/Break Section

The leader should signal to everyone to begin the Intro/Break/Ending with this Call, as the second bar of the two-bar repeat (preferably as the last bar in a 16/32 bar structure):

>120bpm 4/4  | 1-&-2-&-3-&-4-&- |
Signal       | o.OO.O.OO.SSS... | +
Kenkeni call | KK.KK.K.K....... | +
All answer   | BB.BB.B.B...K... | +
Alternate    | B...K...B...K... | +
Djembe+Duns  | BB.BB.B.B....... |   ("Doing the Lambeth Walk")
               rl lr l r

In the Break Section, the spotlight falls on the Dun Dun players who play the alternating high+low notes, joined by the other drums playing just the Bass notes, creating a nice alternating Call and Response on line 3. Alternatively, instead of Duns, the leader might play all the notes as tone and bass, with everyone else responding with just the bass notes. All percussion keeps on swinging right through the Break as before.

Then we come back to the Main Rhythm, with some brave soul soloing over the top. The other drummers should drop their volume level enough to allow the soloist to speak, while maintaining a solid foundation. Once the soloist has said their bit, they should gesture to the group and fall back into the rhythm which should gain volume again ready for the next Break Section.

The piece ends with the Break Section following an echauffement. The last two notes of the Clave part should be played right to the end of the bar, but the Shekere and all other players should stop on beat 3.