In 1984, I started my professional career as a software developer and in 1999, I was selected to work on a software project in Africa. Looking for souvenirs to bring back, I found some hand-made drums which I thought would look good as home décor. Lo and behold, when I returned to Manila, there was an announcement that the Ayala Museum was offering a short course on native drumming. I had never drummed before, so what piqued my interest was the thought that I might be able to put my souvenirs to good use!
I signed up, learned a new talent, and ended up wowing my family during our class recital at the Ayala Museum. Using my African drums, I started jamming with my son, who was in Grade 4 at that time, and we would often participate in drum circles at the Greenbelt Park weekend markets. I eventually developed a lifelong friendship with my drumming teacher and the other drummers who performed with us in those drum circles. At some point, my son and I were even invited to perform at the Music Museum!
This learning experience enriched my life, and probably inspired my son as well. He ended up pursuing a degree in music production; he now teaches music and performs on the local scene with several bands. As for me, I continue to travel for work, and I’ve added Indian, Syrian and Brazilian instruments to my collection (attached is a photo of some of my drums). Nowadays, I sometimes perform at company outings, at my children’s school fairs, or simply to drum out the daily stress. And if selected to join the trip, maybe I’ll take my son along and we can perform for the group!