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Songs With The Best Use Of Percussion Instruments - Exploring Percussion Palooza

Songs with the best use of percussion instruments have rhythm, texture, and energy. From drums and cymbals to shakers and tambourines, percussion adds a distinct flavor and groove that can elevate a track to new heights.

Author:Scarlet Sunset
Reviewer:Caden Steelheart
May 29, 202320.7K Shares406.4K Views
Songs with the best use of percussion instrumentshave rhythm, texture, and energy. From drums and cymbals to shakers and tambourines, percussion adds a distinct flavor and groove that can elevate a track to new heights.
In songs with the best use of percussion instruments, the rhythmic elements take center stage, drivingthe beat and captivating listeners with their infectious energy.
Whether it's the thunderous beats of rock and roll, the intricate rhythms of Latin music, or the polyrhythms of African-inspired grooves, these songs showcase the incredible versatility and impact of percussion instruments.
Get ready to explore a world of rhythm and discoversome of the most memorable songs with the best use of percussion instruments.

Percussion Instruments

Percussion may be the most underappreciated element in recorded music (particularly among non-drummers). However, if you listen to some of your favorite records, you will notice that they almost always include some type of percussion.
While percussion is often consigned to the auxiliary pile in our minds, it may be crucial to a song's rhythm, feel, and mood, as well as a strong tool when creating, arranging, and recording. So, whether you're just starting out on the drums or want to add some flavor and funk to your music, percussion might be precisely what you're searching for.


For good reason, the tambourine is the first item that comes to mind when we think of percussion. The tambourine may be included in practically every song, from The Beatles to today's Top 40.
Because the tambourine is such a versatile instrument, it may be used to play along with and reinforce a rhythm, highlight certain beats with one-off strikes, and even create a rattling sound effect. When utilized correctly, it adds a lot to the table. Simply simple, nothing complements a drum kit like a tambourine.

Conga Drums

Cuban conga drums, sometimes called tumbadoras, have tall bodies and thin heads. Latin percussion and Samba ensembles use it. This rack-mounted drum sounds like a low-pitched bongo drum. "I Want You Back" by the Jackson 5 features this instrument. It starts at 0:11 and continues throughout the song. Conga samples and loops may give weight and depth to percussion.


Castanets are string-tied concave shells. Ancient Romancrotalums inspired them. The instrument is played by striking the untied end with a hand to strike the two shell forms. This generates a sharp, brief mid-to-high-frequency percussion sound that may be played fast for rolls and percussive flare effects.
Castanet players usually play with one set in each hand or two sets on a board. Madonna's "Deeper And Deeper" flamenco bridge at 3:30 incorporates castanets. This is authentic Spanish castanet playing.

Steel Pans

Trinidad-Tobago steel pans are tuned percussion instruments. Caribbean music commonly uses them, which are made from massive steel pans or drums. Two beaters make dads from these instruments. Jamie XX's "All Under One Roof Raving" uses steel pans to provide tone to a minimalist tune.


Latin Percussion devised the vibraslap to sound like a jawbone. As the teeth rattle after the sound, musicians have utilized animal skulls with teeth as percussion instruments.
The vibraslap makes a good rattle, and varied hand postures enable the player to make rattles of different durations after the first stroke. Brian Jones, Rolling Stones guitarist, performed the vibraslap in Jimi Hendrix's "All Along the Watchtower" intro.


The marimba is a big wooden tuned percussion instrument played with mallets. The notes are keyboard-style. This instrument sounds like a xylophone but has a woody tone. The White Stripes' "The Nurse" intro has marimba arpeggios and diads.

"Stayin' Alive" By Bee Gees

Bee Gees - Stayin' Alive (Official Music Video)

"Stayin' Alive" is a disco anthem released by the Bee Gees in 1977. One of the defining elements of this song is its exceptional use of percussion instruments. The iconic drum intro immediately grabs your attention and sets the energetic tone for the entire track.
The combination of crisp hi-hats, driving bass drum, and rhythmic snare hits creates a pulsating groove that keeps listeners moving. Additionally, the use of tambourine accents and handclaps adds a layer of texture and adds to the infectious rhythm of the song.
The percussion in "Stayin' Alive" is a testament to the Bee Gees' ability to create a timeless dance hit with memorable beats and infectious energy.

"Smooth" By Santana Ft. Rob Thomas

Santana - Smooth (Stereo) ft. Rob Thomas

"Smooth" is a Latin rock song by Santana featuring Rob Thomas, released in 1999. This Grammy Award-winning hit showcases an incredible fusion of rock, pop, and Latin influences, with percussion playing a crucial role in creating its distinctive sound.
The song opens with a captivating rhythm provided by congas, shakers, and timbales, setting a vibrant and infectious groove. The percussion elements in "Smooth" contribute to the song's sultry and dynamic feel, perfectly complementing the guitar riffs and Rob Thomas' soulful vocals.
The use of percussion instruments in this song adds depth, energy, and a touch of Latin flavor, making it a standout track with an irresistible rhythmic drive.

"Uprising" By Muse

Muse - Uprising [Official Video]

"Uprising" is a powerful rock anthem by the British band Muse, released in 2009. This song showcases Muse's signature blend of alternative rock, electronic elements, and thought-provoking lyrics. The percussion in "Uprising" plays a vital role in driving the song's rebellious and anthemic atmosphere.
The powerful beat provided by the bass drum, snare, and electronic percussion creates a driving force that propels the song forward. Additionally, the use of handclaps and stomps adds a sense of urgency and unity, enhancing the song's energetic spirit. The percussive elements in "Uprising" contribute to the song's overall intensity, making it a standout track that resonates with listeners.

"We Will Rock You" By Queen

Queen - We Will Rock You (Official Video)

"We Will Rock You" is an iconic anthem by the legendary rock band Queen. Released in 1977, the song is instantly recognizable for its powerful and infectious percussion-driven beat. The use of percussion instruments in this song is both simple and effective, with the stomping and clapping serving as the primary rhythmic foundation.
The stomps create a thunderous and primal sound, while the handclaps add a sense of unity and audience participation. This minimalistic approach to percussion allows the song to create a captivating and energizing atmosphere, making it a stadium anthem that encourages crowd participation and leaves a lasting impact.

"Hotline Bling" By Drake

Drake - Hotline Bling

"Hotline Bling" is a popular R&B and hip-hop song by Canadian rapper Drake, released in 2015. While the song primarily focuses on its catchy melodies and Drake's smooth vocals, the percussion elements play a significant role in shaping its rhythmic feel. The use of sparse but impactful percussion, such as finger snaps, handclaps, and subtle drum machine beats, adds a distinct groove to the track.
These percussive elements create a laid-back and infectious rhythm that perfectly complements Drake's melodic delivery. The combination of the rhythmic elements and Drake's vocals makes "Hotline Bling" a memorable song that captivates listeners with its unique blend of R&B and hip-hop influences.

"Wipe Out" By The Surfaris

Surfaris Wipe Out video

"Wipe Out" is a classic instrumental surf rock song by The Surfaris, released in 1963. This iconic track is known for its energetic and driving percussion, which serves as the centerpiece of the song. The opening drum solo instantly grabs attention with its thunderous rolls and fills, setting the stage for the energetic guitar riffs that follow.
The song's percussion section prominently features the snare drum, bass drum, and cymbals, creating a fast-paced and adrenaline-pumping beat that captures the spirit of surfing and embodies the essence of surf rock. The precise and dynamic drumming in "Wipe Out" has made it an enduring hit that continues to inspire and excite audiences.

"The Way You Move" By OutKast

Outkast - The Way You Move (Official HD Video) ft. Sleepy Brown

"The Way You Move" is a vibrant and infectious R&B/hip-hop track by the duo OutKast, released in 2003. One of the standout elements of this song is its exceptional use of percussion instruments to create a rhythmic groove that immediately grabs the listener's attention.
The song features a combination of live drums, handclaps, shakers, and other percussive elements, all intricately layered to form a dynamic and lively rhythm section.
The syncopated beats and driving percussion provide a solid foundation for the song's smooth melodies and captivating vocals. The skilled arrangement and incorporation of percussion in "The Way You Move" contribute to its irresistible and danceable vibe.

"La Bamba" By Ritchie Valens

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"La Bamba" is a timeless and upbeat rock and roll song by Ritchie Valens, released in 1958. This iconic track is known for its lively Latin-inspired rhythms and joyful atmosphere, largely driven by the vibrant percussion elements.
The song features a variety of percussion instruments, including hand drums, maracas, tambourines, and cowbells, all adding layers of texture and energy to the music.
The infectious beats and rhythmic patterns invite listeners to dance and celebrate, creating a festive and uplifting experience. The skillful use of percussion in "La Bamba" contributes to its enduring popularity and cultural significance.

"Sledgehammer" By Peter Gabriel

Peter Gabriel - Sledgehammer (Growing Up Live)

"Sledgehammer" is a groundbreaking and innovative rock song by Peter Gabriel, released in 1986. The song's distinct sound is attributed in part to its creative use of percussion instruments, which play a vital role in shaping its rhythmic landscape.
From the very beginning, the song captivates listeners with the powerful combination of electronic drum patterns, handclaps, and various unconventional percussive sounds. These percussion elements, along with the driving bassline and infectious horn section, create a rich and dynamic sonic tapestry.
The intricate and meticulously crafted percussion arrangements in "Sledgehammer" showcase Peter Gabriel's commitment to pushing musical boundaries and creating a unique listening experience.

People Also Ask

Drum kits and tambourines are two of the most popular percussion instruments. The drum kit is a sophisticated musical instrument made up of many percussion instruments that are performed by the drummer.

What Type Of Music Uses Percussion?

The membranophonic style, or drum style, is the most well-known genre of percussion music, in which sound is produced by striking the surface of a stretched membrane. Other forms of percussion music include idiophonic, aerophonic, and chordophonic.

Who Is The King Of Percussion?

The Mrdangam is regarded as one of India's oldest ancient percussion instruments. It is placed on the tallest pedestal and is appropriately referred to as the King of Percussion Instruments.

Final Thoughts

Songs with the best use of percussion instruments offer an immersive and rhythmic experience that captivates listeners. The creative and skillful incorporation of drums, cymbals, shakers, and various percussion elements adds depth, energy, and groove to the music.
Whether it's the driving beats of rock, the infectious rhythms of Latin music, or the intricate polyrhythms of world music, these songs showcase the power and versatility of percussion instruments.
They create a foundation that elevates the overall musical experience, making it impossible to resist tapping your feet or moving to the beat. So, dive into the world of percussion-driven songs and let the infectious rhythms take you on a captivating musical journey.
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Scarlet Sunset

Scarlet Sunset

Scarlet Sunset is a captivating and confident transgender individual who radiates sensuality and embraces her unique beauty. With a radiant smile and a touch of red lipstick, she captivates hearts by the poolside as the sun dips below the horizon, casting a warm glow on her unforgettable presence. Despite societal norms and expectations, Scarlet celebrates her body, proudly defying conventional standards of beauty. Her curves tell a story of self-acceptance and empowerment, challenging stereotypes and inspiring others to embrace their own bodies without reservation.
Caden Steelheart

Caden Steelheart

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