Yoruba Culture Is Progressing, Ayan De First

by Duke Magazine

In an exclusive interview with Nigerian performing and visual artiste, Ayanwole Ayantuga, popularly known as Ayan De First-Mr Culture by BBC Africa, he reiterates his background by coming from a family of talking drummers and is on a move to promote Yoruba culture. He describes talking drum as a musical instrument that mimics the language and interprets human voices. 

The instrument is carved from wood and covered on both ends by animal skin. Strings are used to hold together the skin and for tuning.

[The] “talking drum is a musical instrument that mimics the language or interprets human voices. This is a magical instrument, very valuable and useful because we use it to speak different languages, to appreciate people, to call names, to do whatever you want to do with it,” he told the BBC’s Gbolahan Macjob.

He reveals how his art was not initially embraced in the United Kingdom, but has since gone to avail him the opportunity of playing at topnotch events, including at Buckingham Palace for Queen Elizabeth II and the British royal family during the Queen’s Golden Jubilee celebration in 2002.

Ayan De First then describes Yoruba culture as “being much more appreciated and embraced”, and in his message to Yoruba sons and daughters across the globe, he said “our culture – we have to preserve it, protect it and value it more.”

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