Bantang Music Is An Ethical Business Promoting African Culture

Bantang Music aims to empower and inspire people of all ages and backgrounds through African music performance, African drumming workshops for schools, drumming evening courses for adults and energetic, fun team building days.


Simon McCarthy: high profile African drums player in the UK

Simon McCarthy is one of the most well-known and well-loved djembe players in the UK.

Simon co-founded the successful drumming business, Drumroots, in the North West and performed African music across the UK and abroad with Tananté, the Drumroots drumming band, before relocating with his family to Gloucester.

With Arts Council funding, Simon founded Bantang Music to promote performance, education and corporate development through African drumming in Gloucestershire. Bantang Music aims to bring the energy of African culture and drumming to the heart of the community in the South West.

Simon McCarthy playing djembe

Simon McCarthy playing djembe


Prolific performer with African music bands

Simon’s hallmarks are his professional performances and great experience of African music.

He regularly performs alongside the top international artists including:

As a multi-instrumentalist, Simon brings Mandeng songs and kora melodies to his playing. He currently performs with the powerful traditional drumming troupe, Katandi, who are based in Bristol. Simon also plays djembe and kora with the lively Afro-blues-folk-rock-fusion band, Inahwé.

Katandi and Inahwé have both been headline bands at leading UK festivals in Summer 2016.

team building activities

African music band Vieux Bakayoko with Simon McCarthy


Extensive training in African instruments and experience of African culture

Simon has lived between the continents of Europe and Africa over the past twenty years. His musical training in Guinea, Gambia, Burkina Faso and Senegal and his continued study with master djembe players in the UK have given him a deep love and authentic understanding of the tradition of djembe music.

He is perhaps best known in his teaching for his great respect for African music and his clear and kind approach. He explores the depth of the music and enables others to progress in their own playing with great style and technique.

African instruments

Simon McCarthy and Iya Sako lead a drum workshop together.


Sustainability and fair trade products

Bantang Music’s goal is to encourage musical exploration and inspiration while making a positive impact on both our immediate community and the world community.

All of the African drums used by Bantang Music are fair trade products.

Bantang Music donates 10% of all of its drum sales to a tree planting charity in Gambia, encouraging sustainability in one of the communities so close to Simon’s heart.

Bantang Music supports drum makers in Gambia

Bantang Music supports drum makers in Gambia

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