Cochiti (clay)

Cochiti (clay)


There is a constant drumbeat at pueblo dances and ceremonies. It is often the only music to be heard and is sometimes accompanied by the sound of seed gourd rattles or the echoes of antelope hooves sounding against hollowed out turtle shells.

I found it interesting to learn that the beat of the drum is sounded at the same rate as the dancers’ heartbeat. The rhythm increasing as the heartbeat speeds up.

The drum frames were created from hollowed out tree trunks. Wet animal hides (scraped hairless) were stretched over each end and allowed to dry. As the hides dried they become taught – creating the unique hollow sound when struck.


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