Can Byron’s iconic drumming circle be revived?
ONE of the last drummers of Byron Bay's iconic drumming circle needs locals with rhythm to help him revive the nightly tradition.
Once drawing a huge crowd, "the sunset jam" was one of the only free things you could do in Byron Bay other than going to the beach, but over the last few months veteran drummer John Batterham said the drumming circle at Main Beach has all but dissipated.
After hearing Byron had the "world's best drum circle" and moving to the shire three years ago, Mr Batterham linked up with one of the founders of the circle, Wawan Prahara.
But last year Wawan sadly passed away.
"It's (the drumming circle) gone now," Mr Batterham said.
"I go down most nights to see if anyone comes down to play - but over the last few months because of the onshore weather and other changing factors - we haven't had anyone at all.
"When we play we have such a big crowd come and watch."
Wan and Bazz started the sunset jam in the park in town more than a dozen years ago before it moved to the beach.
"After wan passed away I tried to keep it going but it's too hard," Mr Batterham said.
"He was pretty much the backbone of the circle and was there nearly every night.
Mr Batterham said the circle had been predominantly affected by Wawan's passing coupled with bad weather and the fact that "Main Beach has become a bit of a haven for party animals."
He asked the drumming community of the Northern Rivers to show some support by playing for the love and for the people once more.
"Without support, we will lose yet another amazing facet of this areas unique culture," he said.
"We need bums on seats and help keep it alive. I also build African drums and travel around with at least half a dozen spares in my car."
He said people were welcome to come and talk to him about reviving the sunset beach jam outside Cardamom Pod, where he plays nightly.
He will be playing at The Channon Market next week (Sunday, January 12), and weekly at the Mullumbimby farmers market on Fridays from 12.30 until 2pm.