Latin songs to play along with.

Hey, I am looking to expand my knowledge of latin drumming, but don't wont to buy any books. What are some songs I can buy to play along with and whats the main beats used in the songs.

Trip McNealy

Gold Member
I would definitely get a book/CD package if you're serious.

There are WAY too many diverse Latin rhythms to learn and not too mention getting the feel and timing down. You just can't expect to hear and play along without reading and practicing the background to Latin music.

I had the pleasure to attend a private clinic with Phil Maturano and recommend one of his books to get you started. I think you can drop $12 or so bucks on book! LOL.

wy yung

I would say that trying to learn Afro Cuban rhythms from blindly trying to play along to a style one is unfamiliar with on CD would be an inefficient use of time. Better to try to learn what the cascara rhythm is first. Along with clave, bembe, son montuno, cha cha cha, guaguanco etc etc.

If you don't want to buy books, perhaps you could try here:

A little information on the all important clave.

I highly recomend you buy this though:
Hello, All.

Latin styles: Merengue, Gaita, Salsa, Cumbia, Ska.

Latin bands: Zapato 3, Desorden Publico, Sentimiento Muerto, La Puta Electrica, Los Amigos Invisibles, King Chango.


Platinum Member
One of the most difficult things about learning latin percussion (besides the many styles and the 6/8 time sig) is that there is usually so many percussion instruments being played at once it becomes difficult to understand what's going on. You will have to use books and lessons to understand it.


Platinum Member
A good place to start would be to listen to Santana. You could probably get a good feel from his music. Keep in mind that old Santana recordings were fusion between sixties rock with latin rhythms mixed in. The fact that you understand the Rock portion may help you understand the latin portion. It's excellent music and its good listening. Check out the Woodstock performance. It was inspiring.