Community July 19, 2018

Crossing Sounds

An Experiment in Listening to the News

It happened quite by accident. The TV news was on but the sound was off. So, I watched the news without sound. Then I remembered Pam, a professional percussionist who has played every percussion instrument within reach. She has performed  at more than 75 concerts around the world from the Coro Gospel Choir in Spain to the World Café Live in the Philadelphia areas. Her talent and skills are part of a dozen CDs.

Her preference is the drums. I asked if she had any sound-loops that would fit. In no time my computer almost crashed. I chose the two you can hear on this video. They are so evocative and say more than the narrators and interviews that we snipped out.

Pam’s idea that we should  listen to the news rather than just see the news is very refreshing and engaging. I’ve asked Pam to tell us what the instruments are in the comment section below so I don’t miss a beat.

If you like this idea, we can try it again. If you have a video that would lend itself to this kind of music overlay, let us know, and we’ll give it try.


  • September 7, 2018

    Excellent accompaniment to the video. Especially the quica.

  • August 13, 2018

    So good to “hear” the news this way and I love the beat and sound of this loop. I miss playing with you up in Woodstock!

  • August 6, 2018

    My sister Pam is amazing . Her calling to percussion started as early as banging on our mother’s pots and pans as a toddler. Little did we know this would turn into such a skillful passion. A very proud sister, DebAnne

  • July 21, 2018

    The rhythm I played on both the congas and quica is the”samba” beat. Considered one of the most popular Brazilian cultural expressions, samba has become an icon of Brazilian national identity. The quica/Cuica I played is a friction drum. Legend also has it that the cuica was used in Africa by hunters as a call for the male lion since the sound mimics the roar of the female lioness in heat. The instrument was introduced to Brazil by African slaves, where it found its place in the passion of samba music.

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