Surdo sizes normally vary between 16" to 22"or even 26" or 29" diameter. In Rio de Janeiro, surdos are generally 60cm deep. Surdos may have
shells of wood, galvanized steel, or aluminum. Heads may be goatskin or plastic. Rio baterias commonly use
surdos that have skin heads (for rich tone) with aluminum shells (for lightness). Surdos are worn from a waist
belt or shoulder strap, oriented with the heads roughly horizontal. The bottom head is not played.
3rd Surdo (Terceira) lesson
Terceira Surdo-used in the Escola de Samba groups, its primary function is to provide
the samba with "swing" by using a variation of embellishments in the surdo section info; Curtis
)lesson Pandeiro[pond there-ro]), is a type of hand held drum. There are two important
distinctions between a pandeiro and the common tambourine. The tension of the head on the pandeiro can be
tuned, allowing the player a choice of high and low notes. Also, the metal jingles (called
platinelas in Portuguese) are crisper, drier and less sustained on pandeiros than on the
tambourine. This provides clarity when swift, complex rhythms are played. It is held in one hand, and struck
on the head by the other hand to produce the sound. Typical pandeiro patterns are played by alternating the
thumb, fingertips, heel, and palm of the hand.
Tamborim (pronounced: [Tom bor rime]), is a small, round Brasilian drum of African origin. The frame is 6"
in diameter and may be made of metal, plastic or wood. The head is typically made of nylon and is normally
very tightly tuned in order to ensure a high, sharp timbre and a minimum of sustain. The drum is devoid of
snares or jingles. The tamborim is used in many genres of Brazilian music. It is most commonly associated
with samba and pagode, but is also used in chorinho, bossa nova, and some northeastern folklore rhythms such
as cucumbi. In most musical styles, the tamborim is played with a short, thin wooden drumstick. In
samba-batucada, it is played with a beater made of several flexible nylon or polyacetal threads bound
together. On rare occasions, it may be played with the fingers.
The tamborim is held with the weaker hand, The beater is held by the very
tip with the strong hand and the head is struck a little off-center. A playing technique called
virado is often used, in which the drum is rapidly flipped upside-down to produce ghost notes and
syncopated grooves. The instrument may also occasionally be struck on the rim. Tamborim players alternate between
repetitive groove patterns and through-composed signature phrases which function as a melody and are easily
distinguished above the other percussion instruments. Repique (lead drum)
lesson Repique is a two-headed Brazilian drum used in
samba baterias (percussion ensembles). It is used through out Brasil mostly in Salvador Bahia, Rio de
Janeiro and São Paulo Carnival baterias and in the baterias of Bahia, where it is known as repique.
It is equivalent to the snare in the Western drum kit.
Typically its body is made of metal. The heads, of nylon, are tightened through the use of
metal tuning rods. The instrument is about the same width as the Brazilian caixa (snare drum) but several inches
longer in height and lacking a snare. It is held using a shoulder strap attached to one of the tuning rods. In
Rio-style samba it is played with one wooden stick and one hand. In Bahia it is played with two wooden sticks
usually but in some cases also like the Rio-style (the Bloco afroIlê Aiyê for example). It may also be played with a pair of
beaters made of several thin flexible rods bundled together. Baterias commonly include a group of repinique
players whose patterns set the tempo to which the rest of the bateria plays by elaborating on the basic
"1-2-3-4" rhythmic structure typical of samba. The repinique is also often used by the musical director as a lead
instrument, producing calls to which the rest of the bateria responds in a set fashion.
Caixa (snare drum)lesson1 Caixa (snare drum)lesson2 Caixa is a drum used in most in the Rio de Janeiro samba school baterias, and can be played at waist
height or up on the shoulder. It has a crisp, dry, high cutting tone, quite different from the European
style of snare drum. It has a wire snare and the drum is played with the snares on top.
The most common arrangement is two bells attached by a U shaped piece of metal. The smaller
bell is held uppermost. Either bell may be hit with a wooden stick to make a cow-bell like sound or less
commonly a clicking sound is produced by squeezing the two bells together.
Chocalho lesson Chocalho This is a very large powerful
shaker made of wood or metal with a number of steel jingles. This is a fundamental element in the flavor of a
bateria, and also has an important function in helping the caixas to sustain the rhythm. In the old days samba
schools used ganzas today use plattinellas.
Cuica (friction drum)
Cuíca (pronounced KWEE-kah) is a Brazilian friction drum often used in samba
music. The tone it produces has a high-pitched squeaky timbre. The body of the cuíca is normally made of metal. It
has a single head, normally six to ten inches in diameter (15-25 cm), made of animal skin. A thin bamboo stick is
attached to the centre of, and perpendicular to, the drum head, stretching into the drum's interior. The instrument
is held under one arm at chest height with the help of a shoulder strap. To play the cuíca, the musician rubs the
stick up and down with a wet cloth held in one hand, using the thumb of the other hand to press down on the skin of
the drum near the place where the stick is attached. The rubbing motion produces the sound and the pitch is
increased or decreased by changing the pressure on the drum head with the middle or index
Reco (pronounced heco-heco) is a metal scraping instrument which is
held in one hand whilst the other hand scrapes its springs with a metal stick. Reco recos are traditional
samba instruments used less in modern samba school percussion baterias than in former times, but they are
still in use in some Brazilian samba schools.