History Of The Drums As A Music Instrument

Drums are one of the oldest and most widely used musical instruments in the world. Drums are a fundamental component of percussion, and their history dates back thousands of years.

What are drums?

Drums are a type of music instruments that produce sound through vibration of a stretched membrane when struck. They are a fundamental component of percussion. Drums come in various shapes and sizes. If you want to learn more about playing drums, register for our classes and learn from one of our highly capable drums teachers in Singapore.

Who invented the drums?

The invention of drums dates back thousands of years, making it challenging to attribute their creation to a single individual. Instead, drums evolved independently in various cultures around the world.

  1. Primitive Origins: The earliest drums were likely simple frame drums with stretched animal skins, hand-played or beaten with sticks. These primitive instruments served as tools for communication and rituals among ancient civilizations.
  2. African Drumming: African drumming has a long history, with drums playing a central role in various cultural practices. The djembe, a popular African drum, is an example of a handcrafted drum used for communal gatherings and storytelling.
  3. Middle Eastern and Asian Influence: Drums are deeply rooted in Middle Eastern and Asian cultures. The tabla in India, the darbuka in the Middle East, and the taiko drums in Japan are all examples of traditional drums that have been played for centuries.
  4. Western Drumming: In the Western world, the development of the drum kit as we know it today began in the early 20th century, with innovations by drummers like Gene Krupa and the introduction of the modern pedal-driven bass drum.

When Were Drums Invented Or When Was The First Drum Made?

It is not easy to figure out when was the first drum made. The invention of drums predates recorded history, making it difficult to pinpoint an exact date. Drums made from natural materials, such as animal skins and hollowed logs, likely existed in some form for thousands of years before the advent of written records.

What Are Drums Made Of?

Drums are made from a wide variety of materials, each chosen for its unique properties and the type of sound it produces. The choice of materials significantly influences the instrument’s timbre, resonance, and durability. Common materials used in drum construction include the following.

  • Wood: Many drums feature wooden shells, such as those made from maple, birch, mahogany, or oak. Different types of wood offer varying tonal qualities, making them suitable for specific musical genres and styles.
  • Metal: Metal drums, like steel or aluminum, are used in drum kits, orchestral percussion, and hand percussion instruments. Metal drums often produce sharp, bright tones and are valued for their durability.
  • Plastic: Synthetic materials like Mylar are commonly used for drumheads. They offer consistency in tone, responsiveness, and durability. Mylar drumheads are popular in drum kits.
  • Animal Skins: Traditional drums in many cultures use animal skins for drumheads. Goatskin, calfskin, and buffalo hide are commonly employed for their warm, organic tones.
  • Fibers: Hand drums like djembes and congas may have heads made from natural fibers, such as rawhide or man-made materials like synthetic fibers. These materials influence the drum’s sound and playability.