Famed Percussionist, Writer and Frame Drum Expert Layne Redmond Dies at 61

Layne Redmond
Layne Redmond
American drummer, frame drum specialist, author, teacher, filmmaker and historian Layne Redmond died on October 28, 2013 of breast cancer.

Layne Redmond was born August 19, 1952 in Florida, United States. Although Redmond was a skilled percussionist, she did not perform with commercially successful pop, rock or jazz bands. Instead Layne Redmond specialized in the small hand-held frame drums played primarily by women in the ancient Mediterranean world.

From 1981 through 1990 Layne Redmond performed and recorded contemporary frame drum compositions with percussionist, Glen Velez for European and American labels. During this period she intensively researched the ancient playing styles and history of the frame drum in religious and cultural rituals culminating in her book, When The Drummers Were Women. This book details a lost history of a time when women were the primary percussionists throughout the Mediterranean world and also explains why they are not today.

When The Drummers Were Women was released by Random House in June 1997 in the U.S., Canada, Australia and Europe and has been published in German and in Persian in Iran.

Redmond was one of the leading performers on the frame drum and was featured in many music festivals including the Touch Festival in Berlin, Seattle Bumbershoot Festival, the Institute for Contemporary Art in London, Tambores do Mundo (drum festival in San Luis, Brazil) and as a soloist at the 1995 World Wide Percussion Festival in Brazil.

Redmond was a master clinician and taught and lectured numerous times at the Percussive Arts Society’s International Convention; presented at the National Association of Music Therapy; gave the keynote lecture and performance at the eighth annual Healing Sound Colloquium and was one of the keynote presenters at the 2007 International Sound Healing Conference in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Her discography includes: Seven Heaven, with Glen Velez, Steve Gorn (1987); Internal Combustion, with Glen Velez (1985); Handance (1985); Assyrian Rose (1989) with Glen Velez, Steve Gorn, John Clark, Howard Levy; Musica Esporadica (1991) with Pedro Estevan, Maria Villa, Suso Saiz, Miguel Herrero, and Glen Velez; Since the Beginning (1991); Ramana, with Glen Velez (1999), Feather and Bone (2000); Trance Union World Rhythms of Resurrection, Ecstasy and Bliss (2000); Chanting the Chakras: Roots of Awakening (2001) Chakra Breathing Meditations (2004); Invoking the Muse (2004); Heart Chakra Meditations (2006); Book of Changes (2008); The Wave of Bliss (2008), Invoking Aphrodite (2009), Hymns from the Hive (2010).

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