There's too many djembes in the village 
You've got to get a bicycle instead 
'Cos to the local ladies 
A bike is a Mercedes 
And you cannot ride a djembe 
Home to bed 

There's too many bongos in the chai tent 
You know I think they're tapping in 
To something big 
When every second part 
Seems to channel Mickey Hart 
It's something I'm not stoned enough 
To dig 

 Djembe x3 Bongo x3 Djembebongo x3

There's too many fiddlers
In the green room
Forever reeling incessantly obsessed
When Celtic is the flavour
They savour every quaver
But maybe "Drowsy Maggie" needs a rest

©Mal Webb 2000

A djembe originates from the Manding parts of West Africa (namely Mali, Senegal, Gambia, Guinea, and Burkina Faso). It is a goblet shaped drum (usually about a metre tall and 50cm across) now popular in the rest of the world due to its wide range and loudness (these attributes can be utilized by even the most inexperienced drummer; unfortunately). In the hands of an expert player, it is a beautiful instrument. This song was inspired mainly by a great video, called Djembefola, in which the amazing Guinean djembe player, Mamaday Keita, visits home after 30 years of living in Europe. At one point, when loading his djembe onto a truck, his brother says: "Forget your Djembe....." and continues with what roughly translates to the first verse of my song. Mickey Hart, the drummer from the Grateful Dead, is a guiding light of the "chai tent" school of group drumming (also known as "feral" or "hippy" drumming) through his book "Planet Drum". I really have nothing against these things (djembes, bongos, etc.): I just prefer them played well and accompanied by melodic instruments and/or voice (as is generally the case in the traditions from which they originate). "Drowsy Maggie" is an oft played celtic reel (is this a tautology?)