Inanna, Sisters in Rhythm, is an all-women’s percussion and vocal ensemble dedicated to cultural diversity, education, and healing through the universal language of music. Blending western vocal harmonies with the polyrhythms of West Africa, the Middle East, and Brazil, they create a multicultural fusion beyond tradition. Together for 26 years, the band has recorded six full-length albums; been invited to schools to teach drumming and culture to youth; and performed extensively.
Through their own teaching, the members of Inanna seek not only to provide musical education, but also to cultivate vibrant community. The band takes its name from the ancient Sumerian goddess Inanna, who was worshiped more than 4,000 years ago when it is believed that the drummers were predominantly women.
Inanna was conceived in Ulna, Maine, in 1989, in the context of a drum class under the tutelage of John McDowell, who offered the wise guidance that if you want to improve as a musician, "play out", i.e.., start performing. Their first official gig was on the Winter Solstice 1989, which is the holiday of the Goddess Inanna, whose myth recounts her descent and reemergence from the underworld. Some versions of the myth describe her being called back to the upper world through the sound of the drum. Some versions of the myth also say she was responsible for bring the drum to her people.
At that first concert the women of Inanna witnessed the power of the drum in its role of building conscious community and of cultivating great joy. To quote musician and composer Reinhard Flatischler, "Drumming is one of the most pleasurable, simple and radical accesses to the Here and Now, to the total experience of the present moment. And that is extremely healing."
Members have traveled throughout the world to study with master drummers. Their teachers include Famoudou Konaté, Yaya Diallo, Layne Redmond, Glen Velez, and Babatunde Olatunji. Through their own teaching, the members of Inanna seek not only to provide musical education, but also to cultivate vibrant community. The band takes its name from the ancient Sumerian goddess Inanna, who was worshiped more than 4,000 years ago when it is believed that the drummers were predominantly women.
Inanna's repertoire includes a variety of drums: West African dununs (bass drums), djembes, congas, kpanlogo, sabar, surdo, doumbek, frame drums: tar, bodhran, tambourine, riq, kanjira, and melodic percussion such as the balafon, kalimba, and hammered dulcimer. Rhythmic texture is enhanced with bells, shakers, cymbals, tibetan bowls, chimes, claves and wood blocks. Their vocals are distinctive in that Inanna utilizes Western harmonies, and their melodies also include the violin and ukelele.
7pm doors – 8pm show | $12 adv. – $15 day of