Born and raised in Enugu, Enugu State Nigeria, Joe is an experienced ethnomusicologist of Afro music and musical instruments.
Arriving in the United States in 1978, his formal education in business and engineering sciences helped him merge his love of ethnic culture and music with manufacturing and business.
In 1994, Joseph Agu, founded Rhythms-Exotic Afro Percussion LLC, to provide cultural responsible products and services to the music industry and music enthusiasts alike. His goal is to educate and ultimately transcend the boundaries of culture, language and geography.
The desire to provide not only cultural understanding through the re-introduction of traditional and lost tribal instruments but to also enhance the "magic" of exotic percussion instruments in general, led Mr. Agu develop and re-engineer tribal music instrument designs with special care taken to ensure that the instruments are manufactured in accordance with the traditional methods used by tribal instrumentmakers of various African communities.
Specializing on Ceramic "Udu" drums which originated from the Igbo ethnic group, he invented the version of "Udu" drum with skin drum head and has been issued a United States Patent (Des. 395, 444).
Mr. Agu is a highly regarded music and fabrication expert and sought after national and international speaker on issues of music, musical instruments and culture for both industry and educational institutions. He often quotes that we make drums because it is the common property of the people and a handed down tradition.
He is currently a member of National Association of Music Manufacturers (NAMM), Percussive Arts Society, and the Columbia College of Chicago - Center for black music research.
Mr. Agu speaks three languages and lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife, daughter and twin sons.
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