If you are interested in learning how to play a musical instrument, it is ideal to know what kind of instrument to start with. You may wonder what are some percussion instruments that a beginner can get started with. There are plenty of options. We will walk you through the different percussion instruments and help you decide which best fits your personality and interests.
What Is a Percussion Instrument?
Before you begin your foray into learning musical instruments, let us first define what a percussion instrument is. Percussion instruments are a type of musical instruments that are played by beating, plucking or scraping.
It is known to be one of the oldest musical instruments. Nevertheless, despite its long history, percussion instruments have been a crowd favorite for music enthusiasts and veterans.
These instruments are made from different materials such as wood, metal or plastic. Aside from that, they also come in various shapes and sizes. There is a lot of fun when it comes to discovering and knowing more about this musical instrument.
What Are Some Percussion Instruments Aside from Drums?
We all know how popular the drums can be. When an individual knows and plays drums, their status gets quickly elevated to cool! Truth to be told, a drum set is just one of the iconic kind of percussion instruments, but there are still much more that is equally cool and challenging to play too.
Many prefer the drums because it produces lovely beats and complements music very well; however, there are still some other instruments that can do the same thing.
First up is the guiro. This instrument originated in Latin America and is often made of wood. It is often shaped like a fish because it is long and elongated.
To make some music with this instrument, you need to use a stick and scrape it along the ridges. It produces a distinct sound that can often be heard in Latin pop music.
The good thing about this instrument is that you can control the tempo according to your preference. If you want a neat percussion instrument that is different from the rest, then you can start learning how to play the guiro.
If you want something simple, then you might want to try your hand at playing the cowbell. True to its name, the cowbell looks like the bell that is sported by cows. It does not have a ringer inside, but instead, you need a stick to hit it.
In turn, this will produce a distinct sound. Cowbells are not used throughout a song, but it is often played at specific parts to make the tone stand out. In having such an incredibly distinct sound, music producers will often ask for more cowbell. You can usually hear the cowbell in funky music songs during the end or at certain climactic parts.
Another underrated percussion instrument is the Xylophone. The Xylophone is often made of different wood bars, each corresponding to a specific pitch and tone when hit.
The key to playing this instrument is knowing how to use the mallet and hitting the correct bars. This instrument makes use of two mallets, but it is possible for advanced musicians to use more than two mallets in each hand. It all comes down to their level of experience and how they can manage to hit the right bars even with multiple mallets on hand.
Meanwhile, the maracas are quite a popular percussion instrument. It is such a quirky and fun instrument to play with. Usually, you can hear the defined sounds of maracas in salsa music. This instrument is classified as a Latin instrument.
It is often made in pairs where the inside has beans or beads. When shaken together, the beans or beads will hit the wall producing its distinct and quirky sound.
The above mentioned are just some examples of underdog percussion instruments. If you are wondering what are some percussion instruments that are on the popular side, then you are in luck. We also rounded up some of the commonly seen and played percussion instruments today.
Let us start off with the drums. This favorite percussion instrument has evolved. Now, we even have electronic drums instead of the bulky and original ones we are used to. A drum set is composed of various kinds of different kinds of percussion instruments such as the cymbals, snare, bass, hi-hat, and toms.
Learning how to play the drums can be challenging but fulfilling. You need to allot ample time for practice and be able to carry a beat. Most of the time, people find having a drum set bulky because it can occupy a lot of space. If that is the case, then you can start by purchasing an electronic drum set.
The electronic counterpart can give you an idea how to play the conventional drum set. The differences are that the electronic one is portable and can be easily stored away.
Another favorite percussion instrument is the Cajon, which originated in Peru. You can often see this in acoustic performances. It is shaped like a box and is played by hitting or tapping the sides with your hands or fingers.
Aside from acoustic music, the Cajon is also popular as a beatbox. It is also used in Latin America and Afro-Peruvian music. Sometimes, you can also find it used in flamenco and jazz music.
These are just some of the percussion instruments that you will encounter. Believe it or not, there are many more different examples of percussion instruments. There are also different classifications such as the idiophones and membranophones.
The percussion has a rich history and culture. It is a widely used type of musical instrument. There are records of it being present and played during the Middle Ages. Even today, the percussion is still very popular among the music enthusiasts.
In the end, playing a musical instrument is always fun and challenging. Aside from producing great sounds, there are also great tales behind every musical instrument that is waiting to be unraveled.