War drums, first used on the battlefield, were employed both to direct and galvanize the troops. Different beats guided the soldiers into different formations, with one rhythm for “attack” and another for “retreat,” for instance.
No longer a tool of war, battle drums have since become a form of folk art; their powerful, resounding beat still rouses an exhilarating heroic spirit. These Chinese drums are played with straightforward rhythms and clearly defined dynamics. They are essentially used to express the spirit of the Chinese people.
June 15, 2011