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FAQ Main Menu > Hand Percussion

Hand Percussion Information and FAQs


Agogo | Berimbau | Bones | Cabasa | Calabash | Castanets | Castanuela | Claves | Derbacki | Guiro | Lojki | Maracas | Mazhar | Palo De Lluvia | Quitaiplas | Rain Stick | Reque | Riq | Riqq | Shekere | Tambourine | Tejoletas


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Definition: Two wooden or metal tubes or blocks on a wooden or metal frame, one larger and lower pitched than the other. hit with sticks.


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Definition: The berimbau consist of a wooden stick which is strung with a steel string to form the bow shape, a gourd with an opening on one side which acts as a resonator, a coin or stone, a thin bamboo stick, and is played with a basket shaker called caxixi.


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Definition: a pair of cows ribs rattled together in the hand. Also often made of wood or other bone material. Traditional in Britain and Ireland.


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Definition: South American rattle. Made from a metal cylinder with metal beads around it which are scraped against it. Related to African gourd rattles with beads.


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Definition: dried hollow shell of a gourd, used as a rattle.


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Definition: A pair of wooden cupped blocks held in one hand, used for flamenco dance in the Seville tradition.


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Definition: Castanets in English. A pair of bowl shaped pieces of wood (usually grenadilla now, but originally stone or shell) connected by a cord, held in the palm of the hand. From Spain.


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Definition: A pair of round sticks usually of hardwood, played by banging them together. Latin American instrument.


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Definition: hand drum.


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Definition: scraper of the Caribbean; long, fretted gourd rubbed with stick.


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Definition: wooden spoons, popular Russian percussion.


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Definition: South and Central American shaker made from the fruit of the totuma (Venezuela), and filled with dried seeds or other small objects.


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Definition: A large tambourine played in Egypt.

Palo De Lluvia

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Definition: Chilean Rain Stick made from a cactus filled with small stones.


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Definition: Venezualan homemade instrument made from bamboo; when hit against each other and against the floor produce the unique Qui-ti-pla sound.

Rain Stick

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Definition: English Name for the Chilean Palo de Lluvia.
Introduction: The Rain Stick or Rainmaker is made from a straight cactus, you take off the spikes and stick them back through into the tube and insert small stones. You tip up the tube and let the tiny stones fall over the spikes to make a sprinkling rain sound. Then it rains hopefully. They can also be made from modern materials.


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Definition: medium-sized tambourine.


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Definition: Small Arabic drum with jingles as in tambourine.


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Definition: Alternate spelling of Riq


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Definition: African calabash embroidered with beads to give shaker sound. Also found in Cuba.


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Definition: Small frame drum, usually with a skin and metal jingles around the rim. probably of middle eastern origin, similar to the Dafe. known in Europe since at least the 18th century.
Introduction: Modern tambourines come with or without the skin head which may be made of plastic or animal skin. They have one two or more rows of jingles set into the rim. The more jingles the louder the noise! Crescent shaped headless tambourines are very popular as they are comfortable to hold. Star, fish and many other styles of plastic tambourine are popular too as well as the traditional wooden circular ones.


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Definition: From Spain: A pair of hardwood or stone sticks, held between the fingers of one hand, similarly to the bones.