About me

Lukas Zimmerli als Sangbanfola bei einem Fest in Soronkolé (Gberedu)

Percussion music has accompanied me since my childhood. As a kid I played the drums. Later as a teenager I discovered the Djembé and I was immediately fascinated by the exotic nature of this instrument its diversity and its uniqe sound. 
Until the age of 20 I enjoyed playing with people at  bonfires or in crazy jam sessions. It was a fun time but at some point I wanted to know more about this instrument. I wanted to know where it comes from and how it was originally played. 
For five years I took lessons with different teachers from Africa and Switzerland and tried to absorb everything I could find about west African music.
In October 2002 I left for my long-planned trip to Africa. I traveled six months through Mali, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Senegal and Guinea… with the aim of getting to know different styles of African drumming. 
Finally, with Famoudou Konaté in Conakry (the capital of Guinea) I discovered what it sounds like when each of  the three bass drums are played by a single musician. This dynamic and melodic style with his interaction possibilities was exactly what I was looking for.
During the following years I took more lessons, played for dance courses, gave concerts with different bands and traveled for further study trips to Africa. During that period I started to teach other   people how to play the djembé and the dunduns. 
2007 I set up TAXI BROUSSE and my first students and I started to play in youth centers and neighborhood meeting places. 2008 the MUSIKPALAST was founded. Since then my little drum school has its perfect location.

2009 I participated the first time at a version of Daniel Preissler. Even tough I have seen village music before, this was the time I definitely fell in love with it.

In several workshops I learned a lot from Daniel and my appetite for a village music became increasingly bigger.

In 2011 I spend six weeks in Hamana to experience the music and the culture up close and in person. At that time I absolutely fell in love with this old fashion village music and I made it to the main focus of my teaching. 


The last three trips to Hamana I was accompanied by my wife Miriam who had already spent some time there before. Together we learned a lot about the connection between dance and music and experienced a lot of really cool village festivals.

Since my first trip to Hamana, I spend about half a year in the villages. In this time I became friends with some of the local musicians, lived with them, took lessons and accompanied them as an "apprentice" to many different village festivals.
So I helped carry the drums, collected money from the guests or just spent time watching and listening. With time, they let me play the Kensedeni. Sometimes I could play the Sangban before the dancers arrived at the village Square ore replace the Dundunfola for a short moment when he needed a break. 
My biggest highlight so far was in March 2016 when the musicians let me play the Sangban during the hot phase of a Dya-festival. 
Through this experience I learned a lot about village festivals and how they work. Beside this, I had the opportunity  to collect tons of  video footage and audio recordings. Back home I had hours of material to analyze. This did not only give me a better understanding on the correlation between the music, the dance and the whole process of the festivals - but helped me to extend my knowledge about Malinke music in general.
Now… I have to privilege to share this knowledge with you.




Dipl. Pflegefachmann HF

Didactically training:

Adult educator - SVEB 1

Course with substantial connections to creativ work in the „iac“

(Integratives Ausbildungszentrum ZH)





Study visits in Africa:


In Guinea with:
- Famoudou Konaté (Conakry)

- Billy Nankouma Konaté (Conakry)

- Diarra Konaté (Conakry)

- Kaba Konaté (Sangbarala)

- Nansady Kourouma (Babila)

- Laye Kouyate (Fissadou)

- Mamady "Sakala" Condé (Fissadou)

- u.a.


Participation as an "apprentice" of the village musicians from Babila and Sangbarala in divers festivals in the Hamana/Gberedu region.



In Ghana with:

- Kofi Missio (Accra)
- Okoe Ardyfio (Kokrobite)

Current activities


Drum teacher at TAXI BROUSSE


Dipl. Psychiatric Nurse HF m.b.A. (PBL - Tagesklinik Münchenstein) Drumming in a therapeutic context