Drum Lesson Download: Secret to the Djembe Slap

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Secret to the Djembe Slap with Mike Meadows

In this lesson, Mike Meadows will show you how to master the slap note on the djembe. The technique you'll learn can be applied to any hand drum. For those who already know the slap note, you can still benefit from this lesson by picking up some great exercises to help you perfect the quality of your slap sound.

The slap is a technique that is often misunderstood. It has a loud attack, strong sound and because of that, a lot of people want to put a lot of force into it resulting in calluses and other injuries. Doing this technique properly does not require a lot of effort and you'll save your hands from undue stress.

This technique takes some time master as it involves developing the muscles in your finger and hands. It takes time and effort but if you just give it 10 minutes a day, every day it will connect and you'll have it.

In this lesson you will learn how to build this technique and make it really strong so you'll have it for the rest of your life.


  • Learn hand positioning
  • How to hit the drum to obtain the sound
  • Drumming exercise to build the muscles to make the motion and improve the quality of the sound
  • How to use a towel on your drum to build the strength of your slap
  • Exercise to create a clear distinction between your tone notes and slaps
  • How to get the slap sound using both hands
  • Bonus section on improving your tone note sound

This video is instructed by Mike Meadows of Swan Percussion.
Mike Meadows is a professional freelance percussionist, drummer, and background vocalist based in Austin,TX. He is also co-inventor of The Black Swan Drum and co-founder of Swan Percussion. The drum used in this lesson is the X8 Ramadan Pro Djembe.

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3 Reviews

  • 4
    Good for all hand drums

    Posted by PL on 17th Jun 2015

    This is a technique that is used in most hand drums. It is demonstrated on Djembe, but is applicable to different size drums. Very Good tips!

  • 5
    Very helpful

    Posted by Leeanne Shannon on 28th Jul 2014

    Mike Meadows clears up the confusion between slap and tone, something I have had trouble with as a beginning djembe student.
    I feel I now have three distincts tones to play: bass, slap & tone. Thanks, Mike!

  • 5
    Djembe Lesson

    Posted by Sabrina Tolbert on 10th Jul 2014

    I absolutely loved the video and highly recommend any of the videos that X8 has! They are easy to follow!

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