History and Information about the Bongos
The drum, the most common type of percussion instrument, is one of the oldest instruments. The first drums were made of animal skins stretched over a frame of wood or bone. The bongo drum originates from the Afro-Cuban musical traditions, and the first documented use of the bongo was in the 19th century in Cuba. Today, most drums are made of a combination of skins, resins, metals, and woods. The most drum instruction takes place on the drum kit or drum set, which includes the snare drum, bass drum, tom-toms, and cymbals, but some students choose to learn or even specialize in specific forms of percussion, such as the bongos. Since the drums have been around for so long, there is an expansive repertoire of music to learn. You will have access to genres such as classical, blues, pop, rock, jazz, and folk when you learn how to play the bongos.
When to Start on the Bongos
You can start bongo lessons as young as age 4, although depending on a student’s dexterity and fine motor skills, some are able to pick it up earlier. Students also should have begun to read and count, as most instructors will be teaching them how to read music very early on, if not right away.
Please call us for a recommendation of a store from which you can purchase or rent bongos. Often when students are starting out, instructors will recommend a drum pad instead of bongos, as they are costly and takes up a lot of space. For very young students, it is also recommended to rent instruments for two reasons: 1) they will most likely grow out of instruments quickly and 2) they may lose interest (although we hope they don’t!). Most stores will provide repair services for instruments that they rent out.
Purchasing Books and Supplies for Your Bongos
Most books and many supplies are available online. Give us a call for a local store recommendation. Your instructor can tell you which books and supplies are appropriate or needed.
**Feel free to call us at 631-476-8946 with any questions you may have. We can help you find the best stores or dealers in your area and provide you with additional resources.