Sometimes, It’s Just Playing a Tambourine: Eleda Fernald on Percussion, Identity, and Joy

When Oberlin graduate Eleda Fernald thinks of drumming, she thinks of healing. “It’s kind of goofy,” she said, laughing in an interview at the end of March, but in reality, she’s realized one of the simplest and yet most complicated truths of playing music. A recent Watson Fellowship recipient, Fernald was awarded a prestigious grant given to graduating seniors for a year abroad to study their project of choice. The musician spoke at length about her life-long journey with percussion, notwithstanding a few bumps along the way. 

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