Historical information

Alma Quon played the drums/piano in the all-girl band the Joy Belles and was its major instigator and leader. It is believed that the band played contemporary western popular music, possibly a jazz/swing style. It was basically a dance band and they played at many Young Chinese League functions. This drum is believed to have been used during the 1950s.


This drum is significant for its links to the all-girl band 'Alma Quon & the Joy Belle', a girl band during the 1950s and the Chinese Young League. The League was formally established on 4 October 1932 to to promote free social intercourse and goodwill among its members and their mutual improvement. Membership was open to all persons, with one or both parents or grandparents born in China. Wives of Chinese members were permitted as members with the same privileges. It was a significant social organisation for Chinese-Australians in Melbourne in the mid to late twentieth century.

Physical description

Drum with mother of pearl laminex shell, stainless steel fittings and skin membrane.

Inscriptions & markings

Painted on one side "Alma Quon & The Joy Belles" and on the other "Alma Quon".