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Ezequiel's Hand-Made Percussion Instruments
Batá Drums

Batá Drums | Checkeres & Other Percussion | Miniatures

Ezequiel learned the art and tradition of drum-making in his homeland of Cuba, where elders taught him how to make batás, congas, shekerés and cajones drums as well as beautiful beaded tapestries that "dress" the drums (bantes). Batá drums have been used for Orisha worship in the United States since the 1960s. The hourglass-shaped batá drums are played as a set of three:

  • Iyá (mother)
  • Itótele (he who follows in rank)
  • Okónkolo (small child)

Ezequiel also learned the importance these creations carry within the tradition and the respect and care with which they must be treated. He is now recognized as one of the top drum carvers in the United States. His drums have been part of two exhibits at the Historical Museum of Southern Florida: At the Crossroads, Afro-Cuban Orisha Arts (2001) and Caribbean Percussion Traditions in Miami (1998). To order handmade batá drums, contact Ezequiel at (305) 651-3966 or ezebata1@yahoo.com.

Below are images of batá drums made by Ezequiel Torres. Click on the thumbnails below to view larger versions.