History of Drumming for Your Life Institute / Steven Angel

Jimi Hendrix 1968
Steven with Jimi Hendrix at Record Plant
recording studio

Steven Angel is the President, founder, and creator of programs of the Drumming for Your Life Institute (DFYL), a non-profit organization based in Downey, California.

Steven, a child prodigy, started playing the drums at age three. His first performance was with the legendary Buddy Rich’s band when he was six years old. By 12, Steven’s band opened for Herman’s Hermits and The Animals playing in front of 5,000 to 25,000 fans while on tour in the US and Canada. At 16, Steven recorded an album with Jimi Hendrix’s bass player, Noel Redding with Hendrix playing on one of the tracks. Steven toured Europe, and lived a crazed life of amazing experiences and dire disappointments and at 20 he was emotionally and psychologically burnt out.

Steven focused on songwriting where his music was featured on TV shows and commercials. After re-evaluating his life in his 40’s, he realized he wanted to reconnect with drumming, in particular drumming and psychology coming together which became the foundation for the work he is presently doing.

In 1998, Steven created the Life Skills Drumming program to help at-risk youth deal with impulsive behavior and learn self-empowerment. The Los Angeles Times, CNN, and NBC, ran in-depth coverage on his work.

In 2001, Steven spent four months in an elementary school classroom where he created the Reading & Rhythm program which uses rhythm and educational tools in language arts to help students achieve higher grades and improve their behavior. Since 2002, Steven has implemented the Reading & Rhythm program as an in-school and after-school program and has successfully brought the program to over 50 schools, juvenile halls and detention camps. Steven also created and facilitated the Rhythm of Learning Professional Development workshops which provided classroom management skills to over 1,200 K-12 teachers.

With the Rhythm of Discovery technique, Steven has worked with patients recovering from addiction, trauma, and mental illness. Recently, Steven trained the Program Director of Ethno-Cultural Activities at The Betty Ford Institute. Steven has written articles for Counselor Magazine, Addiction Professional, and Drum Pro Magazine.

In addition, for his work in education and therapy, Steven is listed in the Marquis Who’s Who in America and the Marquis Who’s Who in the World.