Thursday, November 13, 2014

(Letters P - R) Videos Of Traditional Music Instruments

Edited by Azizi Powell

This is the sixth in a series of seven posts on traditional music instruments throuighout the world. This post features one or two videos of and information about various traditional instruments whose names begins with the letter "P" - "R".

To access other posts in this series, click the "traditional musical instruments" tag below.

In the context of this series, with a few exceptions such as pan ("steel drums"), vibraphones, and vuvuzelas, my definition of "traditional music instruments" are those instruments that were created prior to 20th century and which are largely unfamiliar to people in the general public (including me).

My thanks to the musicians and vocalists featured on these videos and to all the publishers of these videos.

This series does not purport to include examples of all "traditional music instruments" worldwide.

I love listening to music & I enjoy watching music videos. Unfortunately, I don't play any musical instrument and I've never studied ethnomusicology anywhere but informally online. I'm definitely not an expert on the subject of traditional music instruments.


Pan (steel drums)
Pandeiro (tamborim)
Pan pipes (pan flutes; quena; quills, syrinx)
Penny whistle
Percu (Bamboo percu)
Pipes (double pipes)


Rain Sticks
Rubboard (washboard; frottoir)

These featured instruments are presented in alphabetical order, with their geographical places of origin given in brackets.

Other featured traditional musical instruments may be shown in the video for the instrument that is showcased in this post. Some viewer comments may be included along with quoted information about the showcased instrument.

PAN (steel drum) [Trinidad & Tobago]

Steel drums in Trinidad & Tobago

Sageland Media, Uploaded on Jun 8, 2011

Steel drum music is a tradition on the islands of Trinidad and Tobago. "Pan" instruments are made from recycled oil drums. The drums are mad in different keys and usually played in ensemble style. They can play anything from Bach to Metallica. This video was made for the "Recycled: Re-Seen exhibit at the Museum of International Folk Art.

Firestorm - Trinidad All Stars Panorama winner 2002

TrinidadAllStars, Published on Mar 23, 2014

Firestorm composed and sung by The Original DeFosto Himself, arranged by Leon 'Smooth' Edwards. This marked the end of a 16 year drought in Panorama wins for All Stars, and the return of Smooth to winners row after a 10 year absence from Panorama (1989-1997). Look out for the spectacular explosion of fire at 7:57, another fine example of the flair, style, and showmanship that is the hallmark of Trinidad All Stars.

PANDEIRO (tamborine) [Brazil]

pandeiro solo

melodicmajor | February 22, 2007

Pandeiro solo of pandeiro master Iron Hands playing for percussionist Biboul Darouiche in Salvador de Bahia Brazil (2003).

PAN FLUTE [various geographical locations]

Gheorghe Zamfir - Einsamer Hirte [Romania]

Tarkan Pektaş, Uploaded on Nov 15, 2006

Gheorghe Zamfir & James Last - Einsamer Hirte (1977) (aka the Lonely Shepherd / Kill Bill soundtrack)
Siku and quena are other examples of pan flutes in this pancocojams series.

PECU [New Caledonia]

Mexem-Ifira rose.avi

Wacebew | December 06, 2008

I posted a comment to this video's discussion thread asking for the name of the vertical bamboo sticks and the percussion box with stick. This response to my query was posted on that thread by LenyaGreen: "some of us call those bamboo sticks "rain sticks" but I couldn't give you a better name for it, sorry :)

And the percussion box is generally just called "percu" or "bamboo percu", I'll try to ask if there's an actual name to it but I'm not sure. Thanks for sharing our culture with the world :) "

end of quote.
I assume that "percu" is an abbreviation for "percussion".
I also posted another comment asking for more information about the group, the type of music, and the clothing worn by the musicians/vocalist.

LenyaGreen also posted this response:
"...the group "Mexem" (pronunced Meh-j-em with the "j" like the spanish letter "jota") is from a small island part of the archipelagoe of New Caledonia. The song is in the language from that particular island called "drehu" (pronunced dj-eh-oo) And the rhythm is a mix of traditional "kaneka" (name of the culture of NC's islanders) style and some others. And the clothes have been adopted in NC since the '70s I think."
Edou is the leader of Mexem. a band that's very well known in New Caledonia and throughout the Pacific island region.


Brass Kap van Langa - Simpiwe Matole [South Africa]

Rouvanne | July 22, 2006

From the Amampondo: 25 Years of Skins DVD (MZADV 003) this is a beautiful track composed by Simpiwe Matole, from Langa township outside Cape Town South Africa, with simple percussion and two penny-whistles, played by Duke Norman & Luyanda Nbete.

Filmed in the Cape Point Nature Reserve.

Published by MELT 2000 Publishing or http://insidepeakperformances.blogspo... for more info about the track

QUENA [panpipes] [Peru]

Ritmo Nativo full, By Edgar Muenala at Nativosite

nativosite | January 04, 2007

Andean Feeling / Quena flute

Following Native American Red Path, Published on Mar 11, 2014

"Quills" is an old word in the United States and Britain for "panpipes". Another name for the panpipes is "syrinx".

QUIRO [Caribbean, South America]


Plena Brava, Published on Sep 8, 2012



Nubian Musician playing on Rababa

johannazen | May 17, 2009
johanna zentgraf

REBITE [Brazil]

Nereu Mocotó plays Rebite and Pandeiro

brazilianmconnection | October 04, 2007

Invented by Nereu Mocotó "Rebite" is a percussion instrument that consists of a aluminium bucket full of iron screws. This clip reveals the talent of this Samba legend where he performs an amazing solo with his invention and reproduces the same groove in the Pandeiro. Enjoy!

This musical instrument is included in videos of "guiro"

RUBBARD (also known as frottoir and washboard) [United States]]

Buckwheat Zydeco - Hey Ma Petit Fille

John Hulme, Uploaded on Oct 3, 2010

Buckwheat Zydeco - Hey Ma Petit Fille I'm Going Now - from the Montreux Jazz Festival 1989
..."The frottoir, also called a Zydeco rub-board, is a mid 20th century invention designed specifically for Zydeco music. It was designed in 1946 by Clifton "King of Zydeco" Chenier, and fashioned by Willie Landry, a friend and metalworker at the Texaco refinery in Port Arthur, Texas. Clifton's brother Cleveland Chenier famously played this newly designed rubboard using bottle openers. Likewise, Willie's son, Tee Don Landry, continues the traditional hand manufacturing of rubboards in his small shop in Sunset, LA."

Queen Ida and The Bon Temps Zydeco Band - Rosa Majeur

Posted by sexmex5 / April 06, 2008
Visit for more information about the zydeco rubboard.

Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments and additions to this list are welcome.

You may also be interested in my new blog:
Cocojams2 showcases examples of English language playground rhymes, cheers, and singing games, with special emphasis given to African American examples.

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