Drumming up a storm: Manchester’s Bongo Sean hopes unusual instrument improv will take him to Ibiza

A young innovative Manchester musician is beating his way to success with the unusual talent of playing the bongo, while accompanying the likes of Example and Nero on stage.

Bongo Sean has turned his peculiar instrument into a firm fans’ favourite at gigs.

And when not hitting the high notes alongside chart-topping acts he also frequently features as a resident at Lancaster’s Sugarhouse, often packing out the place with keen music lovers.

Audiences often look puzzled though when they see Sean onstage with a bongo kit, but this soon disappears with his crowd-pleasing bongo antics.

“People are usually shocked when they see me with a big bongo kit, but as soon as I start playing I normally get a really good response and people really seem to enjoy it,” Sean told MM.

“The whole set is improvised I just feed off the DJ and play what I feel. It keeps me on my toes but I really enjoy it.”

The former Lancaster University student has supported the likes of Example, Nero, Danny Howard and Kidnap Kid on tours and is starting to make a name for himself as a live performer.

“Supporting Nero and meeting the guys was amazing, I have always been into dance and dubstep so to meet them was amazing,” Sean added.

“I love their music and performing before them was such a great thing.”

Sean, not to the satisfaction of his neighbours, took up playing the drums aged nine and has had a real passion for percussion ever since.

Despite this, the rhythmist only discovered the bongo’s through chance and has since fallen in love with their unique sound.

“The reason why I play the bongos is because they cut through music really nicely and you get a really great sound when you accompany certain types of club music.

“Bongo Sean started out when a DJ mate of mine asked me to accompany him at a gig so I just went out and bought some bongos and it has skyrocketed since then.”

Sean is a self-confessed party-lover and often heads out to the sunny island of Ibiza to experience what its beaches have to offer.

“I would love to make it in Ibiza, I go there every summer whether I am playing or not because it is such an amazing island and you always have the best time there,” added the bongo guru.

“In the future I hope to just do more of what I am doing now, I love playing the bongo’s and I hope they can take me all over the world.”

Although associated with one iconic instrument, Bongo Sean isn’t just a one-trick pony and has a background in a wide repertoire of music including jazz and classical forms.

“I have always had a love for playing the drums and I have been influenced by a lot of jazz music and 70s big band stuff,” he said.

“I studied music at university and that included a lot of jazz, but I have always had a love for dance, drum and bass.”

Image courtesy of Bongo Sean, via YouTube, with thanks

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