Female Percussionist (05:22)
Barbara Borden has played music all her life; she played with the female jazz band "Alive!" Her sister Marilyn recalls Borden wanting a drum set as a child. See a clip from "She Dares to Drum." Borden's father left when she was eight.
Borden's Early Career (04:32)
Borden recalls her twin sisters performing in Las Vegas. She received her first big drum set at age 10, played in two bands, and moved to San Francisco at age 19. She stopped drumming, took a job in the medical field, got married and divorced, and returned to drumming.
Feminist and Women's Music Movements (07:50)
The movements empowered Borden. She reflects on musical styles; Alive! brought jazz to women's music. Band members reflect on driving in an Econoline van for gigs and the band dismantling; see a clip from a 1995 reunion.
After Alive! (03:17)
Borden joined Nicholas, Glover, and Wray in the 1980s. She and Sheilah Glover made "Lady of the Serpent Skirt"; awareness of goddess culture gave Borden a sense of her roots.
Teaching and World Music (05:39)
Borden began exploring the djembe. Anna Halprin and Borden collaborate on "The Planetary Dance." Borden has been teaching The Redwoods Drummers and others for years; music binds people together.
Drumming Diplomat (03:38)
Naomi Newman and Borden performed for refugee camps and peace groups in Yugoslavia during the Bosnian War. Music can create a space of peace, as it did for Ishmael Beah.
Drumming Lineage (02:46)
Borden studied with Mandaza Kandemwa in Africa; they did many rituals and drumming dance sessions. Borden bought a drum for Kandemwa's community.
Collaboration and Relationships (04:18)
Newman and Borden collaborated in many ways, including on "She Dares to Drum." Borden became the steward of the heart drum. Students reflect on learning from Borden; she likes to teach in natural settings.
Khakassia, Siberia (04:32)
Spending time in Siberia and with shaman Tatiana Kobezhikova was a life altering experience for Borden.
Sacred Suquamish Instrument (03:18)
Borden met Susie Hawk at a drum camp for women and decided the heart drum belonged with her tribal community. Drumming for a spiritual purpose breaks down barriers.
Lotus Belle-Glover (03:22)
Borden helps assemble a drum set for Lotus; Lotus shares her first memory of playing the drums with Borden. Lotus performs in a band at the Sweetwater Music Hall.
Barbara Borden's Hearts on Fire Band (06:58)
Borden, Lotus, and Glover rehearse with band mates for a concert. See portions the concert at 142 Throckmorton Theater.
Credits: Keeper of the Beat: A Woman's Journey into the Heart of Drumming (01:04)
Credits: Keeper of the Beat: A Woman's Journey into the Heart of Drumming
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