Native American Snare Drum


Gold Member
Native American Snare Drums

Continuing my tour of drums in Native American traditions. I have run across several references to snares in Native American traditions, I decided to track these down, and see what they look and sound like. It seems that snares stretched across the face were mostly used in the north, though there are various plains drums that had jingles or tambors attatched to the "small war drums". I've had trouble tracking down the latter, as the war ceremonies are no longer practiced. They appear to be used in a number of context depending on the tribe: war, games, social dances.

Interestingly enough Europeans had spontaneously developed the tabor snare and can't trace is origins(Montagu), though its been scientifically proven that the Vikings were in North America prior to the development of the European tabor, we can't be certain that there were no technology transfer here for example we can't assume that the Vikings and Native Americans simultaneously and independently developed the long war bow. That appeared on the scenes in the middle ages, but its likely the Vikings did little more than make some nails in the 400years of contact prior to Columbus.

These are a couple that I have found.
Innu teueikan:


Ojibwa(And most plains indians)
Figure 12 dance war drum&f=false
Its difficult to find video examples of these "War Drums and Dances", as the tradition no longer serves its original purpose.

Examples of variations rattles and snares.


Montagu: Tabor origins


Silver Member
Very cool links. I'm surprised more people don't draw inspiration from older ancestral drumming. Drums have definitely been a huge part of human history and we should really study this kind of stuff

I'm been getting really into Will Calhoun recently, and his style of playing and approach to drumming has really made me want to explore different historic drum styles like these you've shared