29 Types Of Drums For Beginners

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Drum Machine

Drum Machine

Drum machines are tools that allow you to create sequences of electronic drum beats and various electronic sounds. These can be considered as a type of drum due to them having pads that you can play the beats with, but they’re so much more than that.

They had a simple beginning in the early 20th century, but they caught major traction when programmable drum machines came out in the 70s.

One of the most famous drum machines is the Roland TR-808. Music producers have been using sounds from that machine ever since it came out decades ago.

The sequencing aspect of drum machines is their biggest draw. Depending on how powerful the machine is, you can create some intricate and highly detailed rhythm loops.

They’re great for music production and performers that need rhythmic backing.

Pandeiro

Pandeiro

The pandeiro is closely related to the tambourine, but it has slightly different tonal characteristics. It’s from Brazil, and it’s used in most forms of Brazilian music.

This instrument has a round frame with a drumhead stretched over it. It then has jingles on the side that are in a cupped shape. This shape makes their sound very tight and short, whereas a tambourine’s jingles offer more resonance.

Pandeiros are played by utilizing all the parts of your hand. You can then shake it to rattle the jingles.

Tassa Drum

Tassa Drum

Tassa drums also come from Trinidad and Tobago, and they’re typically played in what is called a tassa ensemble.

The drums come in various shapes and sizes, but they share the same construction techniques. Traditionally, you get a clay shell that is covered with goat skin. However, many companies create modern versions with synthetic materials.

The modern versions tend to last longer, but they don’t hold the same cultural value as the traditional ones.

Bendir

Bendir

The bendir is a large frame drum that mostly gets played in North Africa and certain parts of Asia. This drum can be held in one hand while your other hand is free to strike the drumhead.

The head has a snare stretched across it to give the drum a sharper sound. It also has a bit of a buzz. Bendir drums are surprisingly responsive to dynamics, so you can hear some great performances of people playing these.

Bata

Bata

Bata drums look similar to djembes, but they’re usually a bit smaller. These drums are also played on both sides, meaning they have to be set up sideways to perform with.

One of the defining features of a bata drum is that one side is smaller than the other. This gives you two distinct ones from each drumhead.

Some players set up multiple drums on stands, while others simply lean the bata across their legs if they’re only playing one at a time.

Bodhran

Bodhran

The bodhran is another type of frame drum. This one is used in a lot of Irish music, and it’s typically a bit smaller than a bendir. You play it the same way, though.

The difference is that a bodhran doesn’t have snare wires, so it doesn’t produce a buzzing sound.

When someone plays one of these, they use their one hand to strike the drumhead while the other one controls how the tones come out by pressing on the back of the head.

Tanggu

Tanggu

Tanggu drums are Chinese drums that perform very similarly to Japanese taiko drums. The drumheads are made from animal skin, and you use large mallets to strike them.

Many people mistake tanggu drums for taiko drums, which is understandable, seeing how their sounds and appearances are so alike.

Goblet Drum / Doumbek

Goblet Drum Doumbek

The doumbek is another version of a djembe. This one isn’t rope-tuned, though. It’s most commonly used in Egyptian music, and the way you play it is much gentler than how you play a djembe.

Players will hold this drum under their arms and lightly tap the drumhead to get different sounds and rhythms.

Udu

Udu

The udu is a Nigerian instrument. It’s essentially a clay water jug, but it produces different sounds according to how you cup the large hole on the side. You get a bass sound, but the pitch will change depending on how you shift your grip.

Types of Drums for Beginners, Final Thoughts

You’re most likely going to see standard drum kits and marching drums being used far more often than any of the other drums I mentioned. The other drums are more popular around the world in different cultures, but the thing that connects everything together is rhythm.

If you want to learn how to play one of these drums, it may be best to start with playing a full drum set. After that, you’ll have the rhythmic chops to be able to pick up most other drum instruments quite easily.

P.S. Remember though, none of what you've learned will matter if you don't know how to get your music out there and earn from it. Want to learn how to do that? Then get our free ‘5 Steps To Profitable Youtube Music Career' ebook emailed directly to you!

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