Kw-logo-holiday

Shake It Up With Percussion Instruments

This guiro is often called the fish.
Wood Guiro
Cabasas make a neat sound.
Cabasas

Percussion instruments are a very important part of a song. Without drums a song would have no beat. What's a song without a beat? Lame - that's what. Drums aren't the only way to add beats and rhythms to your tune though. There are a lot of neat percussion instruments that'll spice up your songs. Here are a few to shake things up.

Percussion Instrument - Guiro

The guiro is a hand-held hollow percussion instrument made out of wood or from a gourd. It originated in Latin America and comes in a variety of long shapes. One of the shapes looks like a fish so the instrument is often referred to as "the fish." To play the fish you simply scrape a wood stick back and forth across the ridges on the body. The tempo (or speed) is up to you. It makes that famous "cha-cha" sound and is very common in Latin American pop music like Ricky Martin.

Percussion Instrument - The Cowbell

The cowbell (also called the square hand bell) got its name cuz it looks like something your cow Bessie would sport around her neck. The cowbell is made out of metal of course but doesn't have a little "ringer" inside of it - you strike it with a stick. There are hand-held versions and mountable ones for your drum kit. It's not usually used throughout an entire song - usually only in sections so it stands out. Cowbells are used in all styles of music - especially funk music. Can you imagine War's famous Low Rider tune without a cowbell?

Percussion Instrument - Tambourine

Add a little jingle to your tune with a tambourine. Tambourines are made from various materials and come in an easy-to-handle crescent shape, full circle or as a drum kit mount. Some tambourines have a drum skin stretched across one side that you hit and the others you just [kwlink]rattle[/kwlink]. The noise is produced by the little metal "symbols" or flat metal plates rattling against each other. They come in brass or steel jingles. This is another popular percussion instrument used by tons of bands. The Doors used a tambourine a lot in their music to mimic the sounds of "spirits." Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac used the tambourine so much it kinda became her trademark. No one can shake a tambourine like ol' Stevie.

Percussion Instrument - Cabasa

The cabasa is another hand-held instrument that produces a "beans in a shaker" kinda noise. It's usually made of hard wood with a handle and chain-like metal beads around a spool shape. To use it you simply hold it in one hand while you hit it with the other hand moving the rows of metal beads around the head. They hit each other to produce sound.

Percussion Instrument - Maracas

There's nothing like a pair of maracas to add a little salsa to your song and kick it up a notch! This hand held Latin instrument is usually shaken in pairs and sound is produced by beans or beads hitting the inside wall of the instrument. They're usually made out of wood but can be found in plastic and even metal. The Rolling Stones' tune Sympathy For The Devil is jam-packed with maracas.

Related Stories:
>

readers voted!

Comments

JennyD

JennyD wrote:

I know how to play the drums
commented: Mon Sep 30, 2013

Monicca2015

Monicca2015 wrote:

Hi aishu
commented: Sat Dec 15, 2012

aishu2050

aishu2050 wrote:

What are you do
commented: Fri Dec 14, 2012

there are 5 more comments

Please login or register to add comments


like this article?
Sign up now to get more just like it!

latest videos

F1123630222765

Coolest Percussion Instrument? Vote!

  • Steel drums.
  • Bongos.
  • Tamborine.
  • Bass drum.

related stories

25 Van Halen songs from the David Lee Roth era come out to play with 19 bands from the 1970’s to ...
Want to take to the skies and fly an airplane when you grow up? Check out what it takes to become...
Ever wanted to play guitar like your favorite rock stars? Here's your chance! I Can Play Guitar i...
The guitar is one of the most popular instruments in modern music and is played by musicians all ...
This instrument shares its name with one of your fave *NSYNCers, Lance Bass, but it's pronounced ...

Random in the forums

justimagine23
 =(
reply 10 minutes
TheStruggleBear
 :D Mine
reply 21 minutes
thatwesomenewacc
 :annoyed
reply 22 minutes
arthi
arthi posted in General:
"Charulata" wrote: "arthi" wrote: Mood : Happy! Fave Color : Blue! fave cartoon : Tom and Jerry! :D You're happy , your favorite color is Blue and favorite cartoon is Tom & Jerry! I think you're OGGY (:  Hehe then where are the cockroaches? :D
reply 34 minutes
melissawolf
thank you
reply about 1 hour

play online games

Hour-of-code-tumb

Codey the troll is lost! Help him avoid obstacles and get back into the computer...

Candy-quest-feature

Your troll is lost! Help it avoid obstacles and get back into the computer.

Fo...

Dragon-dash

Your dragon must return to guard the treasure! Help it gather lost coins and avo...

_thumb_100x100

Shoot blobs with different properties to merge yellow blobs. Your blobs can be r...

1005_cc_kidz_100x100_vlh

Candy's got her candies into a terrible mess, can you help her to sort them out?

Candy-100

A great online version of the famous Candy Crush. This is the best game launched...

_thumb_100x100

Bloons 2 is here! A worthy and awesome sequel at last to our original Bloons gam...

Frostbox_100x100

Explore the world or hang out with friends in your own condo. Get a unique look,...