Drumming in the spring
FRISCO – Tens of thousands of people all over the United States will be joining together in the power of percussion today. The effort is a call for world peace and environmental responsibility in a movement called 10,000 Drums for Peace. The event purposely falls on the Spring Equinox, which is recognized as a time of renewal. “Drumming is a great way to unite people. It breaks through any cultural or language barriers. I’ve drummed with people who didn’t speak the same language, and it doesn’t matter once you start drumming,” said community drum circle facilitator Jon Crowder.
Whether he’s facilitating an assemblage of 10 drummers or 10,000, Crowder knows how to guide a group. He is a successful pianist, guitarist, songwriter and percussionist, and about four years ago, he started the community drum circle. He now has about 100 regulars. “I’ve always loved music,” Crowder said. “It allows me to do what I love and bring people together.” Crowder began his professional life as a lawyer after graduating from the University of Florida law school. He practiced litigation and corporate law for several years but found it wasn’t the right path.
“About nine years ago, I stopped practicing law altogether. I moved to Summit County to give myself some time to write and play music and to have some space and breathing room,” Crowder said. He insists that no experience is necessary to participate. He encourages everyone who’s curious about the drum circle to try it.”We encourage self-expression and creativity. It’s very interactive and hands on,” Crowder said.
Crowder is also the owner of Peak Rhythms, Inc., which provides group empowerment drumming and rhythm programs for organizations, conferences, special events, nonprofit organizations, schools and just about any group that wants empowerment. He works with a team of professional percussionists and drummers and facilitates the groups through making music. They can potentially work with up to about 5,000 people. Crowder and his team have traveled throughout the Rockies facilitating programs, including organizations in Santa Fe, N.M., and Jackson Hole, Wyo. “We’re empowering people to take a step, to do something new and to help and smooth the progress of the process to show them that they can do this. We’ve truly gotten a great response,” Crowder said.
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