The tiniest, lightest and highest pitch samba drum is the tamborim. A clean crisp tamborim line elevates the ensemble to the rafters! The intricate designs and rhythmic figures of this drum give shape to the bateria’s sound and groove.
This drum is six inches in diameter, with 6 tuning hooks, just enough so that you can hold it comfortably. It can be tuned high for for a beautiful dry sound. The thick, ridged, aluminum shell gives you a lot of shell sound which is wonderful feature in a small drum.
A good drum for professional musicians and beginners.
Role in the bateria
Since it is the smallest and highest pitch drum, the sound of the tamborim cuts through the sound of even big baterias. The carefully crafted rhythmic phrases play around over the driving momentum of the other drums.
The sticks used to play the tamborim depend on the context.
For batucada styles the tamborim beater is a bundle of long flexible plastic sticks are used. These sticks with weighted tips have a nice “throw”, weight and balance to them. Many North Americans prefer tamborim beaters with 5 or 7 prongs. Europeans seem to prefer 2 and 3 prongs. Brazilians are all over the map. All the tamborim sticks at Go Samba are made by hand by artisans in Rio.
For pagode styles, a wooden stick is sufficient. The tamborim does not need to dominate in this setting.
I have several colorful bags to choose from. They each have a sleeve in the strap to put your tamborim beater or stick.
How to play
The tamborim is held in front of your body with one hand. Usually your weaker hand. The tamborim beater is held in the dominant hand. When playing the 16th note tamborim pattern and other rhythms, the players us a flipping technique which has a really cool audio and visual effect.