The pandeiro is a staple percussion instrument in Brazil, and in recent years made its way into a wide variety of musical genres. Like the djembe, frame drum, or cajon, you are able to achieve low bass drum-like frequencies as well as high-end sounds all in one drum. The added jingles (platinelas) can also simulate a shaker or hi-hat tone. To get you started, here is the basic “money beat” on the pandeiro (note: close-mike that bad boy from underneath for some amazing low end).

1. Start with a loose, comfortable grasp of the pandeiro in one hand and strike the first beat with the base of your thumb for the open or bass tone.

2. A sharp hit with your fingers along the edge will engage the platinelas for a crisp, high tone.


3. Rock back on the third beat using the base of your hand again along the edge of the drum.

4. The last beat before repeating the groove is another finger hit. Work it up to a comfortable tempo, and for an added, cool samba feel, accent the last finger hit before the downbeat.