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Percussion Instruments

Percussion instruments vary widely in terms of looks and the types of sounds that they produce. While all percussion requires hand work to elicit sound, techniques to do so can be very distinctive and different from one another. Materials like wood, metal, plastic, and textiles help to create different kinds of percussive instruments.

What types of percussion instruments are available?

Percussion instruments are beaten or hit with a stick, a hand, or other special instruments in order to create some type of sound or tone. Drums, cymbals, folk and world percussion, hand percussion, orchestral percussion, and other percussion instruments are among those available.

What kinds of drums are there?

Sets, kits, electronic, snare drums, bass drums, toms, and other types of drums are available. Drum sets and kits are routinely used in different types of bands. Jazz, rock, and lots of other music genres are well-known for having drummers who typically sit behind a kit. Snare drums are round and relatively flat; they are played with wooden drumsticks and make a hollow, mid-pitched sound. Bass drums are much larger and require either a stand or a harness. They require the use of mallets that usually have a fabric covering on the end that hits the center of the drum. Their tone is low and deep. Toms fall in the middle. They come in different sizes and vary in terms of pitch.

What sort of hand percussion instruments are there?

Shakers, tambourines, singing bowls, kalimbas, and other sorts of percussion instruments make up the hand-percussion group. These are all played with one or two hands. Tambourines are made of plastic or leather and form a circle adorned with tiny metallic cymbals that make sounds when the tambourine is moved or clapped against the other hand. Singing bowls are played either by striking the bowl or rotating a special mallet around the outside rim to create sound. Kalimbas are played with the fingers of both hands; strings are plucked to create different notes.

What are some of the folk and world percussion instruments?

Congas, hand pans, cajons, bongos, djembes, darbukas, steel drums, tablas, Irish drums, tamburas, and dholaks are some of the percussion instruments from around the world. Each requires different applications of the palms, knuckles, and fingers.

What types of percussion instruments are utilized in an orchestra?

Orchestral percussion includes mallet instruments, like marimbas, xylophones, chimes and gongs. Different symphonies or movements of pieces may require one or more of these instruments to be featured at a time. Specialty instruments may be used in pieces as highlights. For instance, a piece about crickets may incorporate a guiro.

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