Celebrating, Practicing, and Integrating the Most Ancient of Human Skills

March 9th-16th, 2018

at the Historic High Jinks Ranch in Oracle, Arizona 

A one-week immersion into Traditional World Percussion and Traditional World Basketry


Awaken the Rhythms from deep within your Bones
Activate the Skills lying dormant in your own Hands
Re-Discover and Explore the most ancient aspects of your Humanness
Learn to Communicate effectively and beautifully with the Life around you.

Join Ancestral Rhythms Guide Herman Kathan and Ancestral Skills Guide “Cannon” in this Authentically Empowering Journey of Transformation.

Herman brings his medicinal rhythms and character all the way from Europe to share with us- this is an opportunity not to be missed!

As a musician, composer, and teacher, Herman Kathan focuses on percussive traditions from West Africa, South and Central America and Asia. His 35 year musical career has engaged him in intense study of West African Malinke rhythms, Brazilian Candomblé culture, Berimbao grooves, Krin rhythms, Cuban conga music, and Ugandan Amadinda music. In addition to detailed musical knowledge, Herman Kathan can impart insights into the mental, emotional and philosophical structures of this music, and beyond. As a musician he has founded and directs various ensembles, most notably Busch-Werk and Tympana, and has performed and toured with Mamady Keita, Famoudou Konaté, Soungalo Coulibaly, and Nippy Noya. Herman lives in Germany and teaches and tours throughout Europe.
To learn more about Herman and his work, click here.

Cannon is a certified Naturalist and Educator with almost 20 years experience living in some of the wildest places left on Earth; he has empowered thousands of people with skills that they will use for the rest of their lives, and pass on to future generations; he has guided many seekers in re-kindling intimate relationships with the wild world and its wonders;  and he is very excited about this new collaboration with friend and teacher Herman Kathan.

“What Herman and I have in common, among other things, is delving deeper into these primal living skills: not only learning technique and method and tradition,  but exploring the metaphysical aspects and impacts of these practices, and how they are still so useful and empowering to us today.”

To learn more about Cannon and his work, click here.

Register Now!


$750 Camping
Register before February 20th and receive a $75 discount!  
(The amount PayPal will charge, $675.00)

$850 Indoor Accommodation
Register before February 20th and receive a $75 discount!  
(The amount PayPal will charge, $775.00)
It is very, very helpful to us when folks register early.

REFERRAL INCENTIVE:  Get a friend to sign up and receive an additional $50 reduction off of your own exchange!

Space is limited to 15 participants.

Exchange includes accommodation, instruction, and 3 meals a day.  Meals will be very nearly all organic.  If any participants are vegetarian, meat dishes will be kept separate.  Meat will be sourced from nearby ranches, who raise healthy, happy animals.  We are unable to accommodate any other specific dietary needs or preferences. 

Participants will need to bring a djembe or very similar drum; if unavailable, we may be able to arrange one for you for a small rental fee.

All skill-levels of basket-weavers, beginner to advanced, are most welcome, and will benefit greatly from this experience!  We will explore weaving traditions and techniques from Europe, North and South America, utilizing various local materials, and will even be making musical baskets: traditional Brazilian shakers called “caxixi”.

Drumming will be primarily focused on traditional West African Malinke rhythms.  Some drumming experience is required, as drumming instruction will be at an “intermediate” level.  Beginners are welcome, but not “absolute” beginners.  If you have no drumming experience but would like to participate- do not fret!  There is plenty of time for you to seek out and acquire some experience before this program.  We highly recommend West African, Brazilian, and/or Cuban percussion.  Likewise, this course may not be suitable for professional-level drummers, unless you teach or are interested in teaching drumming, as you will likely gain much from Herman’s teaching style and methods.  


“The Universe has a rhythm, or, if you like, you can say that it has a will.  What we call the ‘Universe,’ you can, if you want, give it further personality and call it God.  There can be any number of names for this.  We just say ‘Universe,’ [uni-verse; one-song] and that is fine.  We don’t have to endow this with our own concepts of self.  Still, no matter what we call this, it is this very thing right here.  It is this.  And it has a rhythm.  When we act in concert with that rhythm, then we seem to have a very powerful will, because we are not out of balance with what is.  We are moving with what we might call the ‘will of the Universe,’ in exact harmony with what is happening.  When we move from our own personal notions, following only our own will, then most often we are off-time or out of tune with this Universe.  This Universe includes, and therefore cares for, everyone, not just us….  We say that the ultimate goal of this training is to be one with the Universe.  This means to move in harmony with this rhythm.  This is being one with the Universe.  Your will and the will of the Universe are not separate.  When we find ourselves in this harmonious condition, it produces a feeling within us which we call ‘happiness.’”         (Christopher Curtis Sensei on Happiness, from his Ki-Aikido publication Letting Go)

These practices, drumming and basket-weaving specifically, help us find that Rhythm, find happiness, in a direct, primal, and profound leap.  

And besides being some of the oldest skills ever practiced by humans, what do drumming and basket-weaving really have in common?

They are both a weaving together of individual elements, individual voices, creating a complex whole: a container for experience.