Bill Scheidt, Director Of TTM Winston-Salem
Bill Scheidt picked up a djembe for the first time more than 25 years ago, having studied a variety of Western instruments from age five. Since then he has traveled to Africa six times, spent more than a year and a half living in rural African villages, and studied percussion at Berklee College of Music. Today he is the Director of Tam Tam Mandingue Winston-Salem.
Bill spent more than 15 years as a close personal student of Mamady Keita, and was among the first group of students to ever perform on stage with Mamady Keita both in the U.S., and in his home village of Balandougou, in Guinea, West Africa. Bill is a Senior Certified Teacher in Mamady’s international school of the djembe, the Tam Tam Mandingue Djembe Academy (TTMDA). In earning the TTM Senior Certified Teacher qualification, Bill joins a small handful of drummers from around the world who have been commissioned by Mamady Keita to preserve and teach the music, culture, spirit, and traditions of the Mandingue djembe.
Other teachers Bill has learned from include Famoudou Konate, Bolokada Conde, Daouda Kourouma, Sékou Konaté, Fode Camara, Mohammed DaCosta, Mahiri Keita, Kikala Olaré, and Joe Galeota. Bill also studied Afro-Cuban percussion with Ricardo Mendoza and Egguie Castrillo, percussionist for Tito Puente.
Bill regularly travels throughout the US leading workshops, clinics, and performances. He has received multiple awards from state and local arts councils and has been an instructor at institutions such as the North Carolina School of the Arts and Wake Forest University. Bill has recorded and performed with a number of groups playing everything from Latin jazz to traditional West African music to rock-and-roll.