Different Types of Drums: Which One Is Yours?

At some point in history, the number of drum types has increased several times. Nowadays, these instruments are used by both classical and modern musicians and can create a huge variety of sounds. You can become a drummer quite easily today. I will tell you more about different types of drums – they all are so unique and fabulous.

Modern Drums and Drum Kits


Most drums belong to percussion instruments, which means they make a sound when a player hits the stretched membrane. You can use the drum sticks or play with your hands. Different kinds of drums are suitable for these methods. Now, the drum heads are made from plastic or similar texture fabrics. Such a design provides powerful and smooth sounds. The drums can be a single item or create a whole kit.

1. Rock or power drum kit

This set is used by most rock and pop-music bands. They can be different sizes, but all of them include six basic drums. One of them is a bass drum – it is the largest one and the player should use a foot pedal to make a sound with it. A snare drum is played with the non-dominant hand. Small floor drums and rack toms make a higher sound. There are also tambourines and cymbals in this category.

rock drum kit

2. Jazz drum kit

These drums are quite similar to a rock drum kit. However, the bass drum is usually smaller and makes a less dense sound. Most other drums have the same diameter as floor drums. A jazz drum kit is designed for a quick style of performance.

3. Electronic drum set

Electronic drums have become popular not so far ago. They’re used for professional sound records because they have a wide range of sonic options. However, they are also perfect for playing at home. The electronic drum set instruments have a similar construction to the standard kit, but you can also connect them to diverse apps and record the music easier. Some programs even provide beginner tutorials.

4. Classical drums

The most common classical drums are a bass drum, tenor drum, timpani, bodhran, and side drum. And this is not the whole list. The classical bass drum is much bigger than the one from the rock drum set, and musicians use handheld mallets to play them. A tenor drum is higher-pitched than the bass, smaller, and you can play it with drumsticks. Most classical drums are used in orchestras.

5. Afro-Cuban drums

These musical drums are played by hand and have a long shape because you need to put them on the floor. One of the Afro-Cuban drums is congas. They are one of the largest drums from this section. Bongos are smaller and have a higher pitch than congas. There are also timbales – the player usually has two drums and uses diverse tools to play them.

conga drums

6. African drums

The African continent has offered us a lot of different percussion instruments and playing techniques. Among them is a djembe, talking drum, udu, ngoma, and slit drum. They are also played by hands in most cases. The talking drum got its name because its sounds are a little similar to a human’s voice. The djembe has a goblet shape, and the ngoma has a barrel form – they are quite unique drums.

FAQ About Different Types of Drums

There are so many names of different drums that it would take a long time to tell everything about them. In this section, you can find the answers you may be searching for.

Are drums percussion?

Most people know that drums around the world are percussion instruments, as I have mentioned before. However, some modern types, such as tank drums or hang drums, can be played in a smoother untraditional technique.

How many percussion instruments are there?

Nowadays, there exist more than three hundred various drums and percussion instruments, including not only drums. And this number increases over time.

How many types of drums are there?

Actually, musicians around the world say the different numbers. The most common drum types are classical, rock, African, and some other drums – but they have subspecies, too.

The Incredible World of Drums

It may seem that drums are easy to play. In some cases, it is true; however, as explained above, there are so many various drums, and they all require particular skills. There are also diverse playing techniques. If you’re interested in drums, several tries and consistent practice will help you choose the one to express your style.

Are you a drum player or do you want to try playing this instrument? Do you think it would be difficult for you? Share your comments in the section below.

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