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Here are five basic techniques using your fingers:

Bass Sound

The first finger sound employs turning the wrist inward, striking the drum with the fleshy part of the hand and the extended thumb. The drum should be struck the off the center position. After the stroke, the thumb should not rest on the drum allowing the head to resonate creating a rich deep bass tone on your drum.

High Sound

The next sound is created in a similar manner to the Bass sound. However, with this technique the wrist will rotate outward allowing ring finger to strike the drum. This technique is used near the edge of the drum creating a higher pitch sound.

Dead Sound

Third is the Dead Sound. Muffling the drumhead with the wrist and palm and striking the drum with the fingers create it. Split the fingers into two groups: the thumb and forefinger, then the other three. With the drum muffled, twist the wrist back and forth allowing the two groups of fingers to strike the drum in the desired rhythm near the center of the drum. This will create a bass note but without the resonance of the first sound.

Finger Flick

Gently curl your fingers into a loose fist. One at a time, push each finger free of the fist in quick succession flicking the drumhead. The result will be a short crackle on the drum similar to a Ruff.


Finally, rubbing your fingers across the drum can create a more gravelly sound that can add extra depth to your beats. Use your fingertips for a somewhat soft sound or use your fingernail for more of a sandpaper feel.

28th Oct 2014

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