How to play tongue drum

Getting started with your Beat Root:

- Sit cross-legged or on a stool and position your Beat Root between your legs. It is advisable to play with the lowest note (biggest slat) towards you and the highest (smallest slat) opposite.

- Be careful not to cover the entire bottom of the tongue drum with your legs so that the resonance is not impaired. If you cover this hollow part with your legs or a cushion for example, the sound of the tongue drum will be more muffled. To avoid this muffled sound, simply spread your legs a little so that the tongue drum has room underneath.

- No special knowledge is required to start playing. You just have to let yourself go without thinking about the notes you are going to play. All the notes are in tune with each other, so no false notes are possible. The melodies you play will come naturally and you will be surprised at the spellbinding music you will be able to play!

Check our tutorial video to learn how to play the tongue drum

Three ways to play with your steel tongue drum:

With the two mallets provided

The mallets we provide with our tongue drums are of excellent quality and bounce easily on the notes, which makes them a great pleasure to play. The notes are easy to play and the sound is powerful and crystal clear. Playing with the 2 mallets is the ideal approach to start discovering your tongue drum and easily create melodious and relaxing atmospheres. 

With one hand and a mallet

This is a very interesting approach because it allows you to play melodies easily with the mallet while controlling the resonance of the instrument with the other hand. This is the recommended approach for those who want to deepen their playing technique.

With both hands

This is the most pleasant but most technical way to play. It is possible to sound the notes with the tip of any finger, but it is advisable to concentrate at first only on the thumbs, index and middle fingers.

The strokes must be very short, the finger must come to whip the slat to make it vibrate. If the finger touches it too long it will prevent the note from vibrating.

A little tip: imagine that the instrument is hot and that you have to remove your finger immediately after the contact. Even anticipate the fact that the instrument is burning and move your hand back before the impact to let the finger come and hit the instrument quickly.

Watch our tutorial videos to learn how to play tongue drum

If you would like to learn more about the steel tongue drum, we have put together some tutorials to help you learn how to play it. You can find them in the "Learn" section of our site.

You can also start your first tongue drum lesson directly by following this link: Beat Root tongue drum online lessons  

Find all our other tutorials on our Youtube channel: Beat Root Tutorials