Useful tips and information
Pandeiro - shopping guide
The ideal pandeiro
It is not easy to find your perfect pandeiro! There is a massive choice beginning with pandeiros with simple synthetic heads and plastic frames, pandeiros with wooden frames and goatskin or plastic heads, and last but not least - handmade superlight high end pandeiros. Many experienced pandeiristas have a large collection of good pandeiros at home and are still searching for the ultimate one. We hope we can make things a bit easier for you with a few handy informations!
Goatskin head or synthetic head?
Sound, musical focus, weight and optical appearance are the criterias you have for you decision between a natural goatskin head or a synthetic head. Basically they are completely different instruments. As soon as you know what type of head you want, your dicision leads you to the options of instruments you have and the genre they are used for.
Pandeiros with natural skins are light-weighted and therefore much better for beginners. A thick skin can be tuned down extremely low. This tuning is popular e.g. for Marcos Suzano-style funk grooves, or for all other grooves that require a thick bassline. A goatskin head pandeiro is also good for playing Choro, Capoeira and many other Brazilian music styles that need a soft and warm sound.
Pandeiros with synthetic heads are usually heavier. The heads are pitched higher, which requires a stronger and therefore heavier frame and more tuning hooks. Synthetic heads are usually made out of several layers. Often the transparent surface is underlayed with a holographic foil for a pretty effects. So also the optical appearance of those pandeiros is quite diverse. The sound of synthetic heads is very dry. The slaps are sharp, the opens like a short 'blop. This type of pandeiros is played in Samba and Pagode. Some pandeiros are also played with single-layered heads. Together with 'dirty'-sounding jingles, they are typical for styles like Coco or Embolada.
The sound of the jingles is influenced by several factors: what material are they made of, are they equipped with thin inbetween-sheets for muffling, are they machine cut or handmade,what size do they have and how big are the gaps in the frame spared out for the jingles. The sound characteristics are as diverse as the musicians´wishes. In order to find your personal sound-favourite, you either need to try playing the pandeiro or or you listen to our sound files.
Which tension rim?
Pandeiros have either round-rod tension rings or flat-metal tension rings. The most common ones are the round-rod rims. They are more comfortable to hold and to play since they have no edges. On the other hand they weigh a little bit more.
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