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Arts and Crafts

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Drum Sticks Throughout History

Wooden drum sticks or mallets as they are also called made their entrance a long time ago. The first recorded evidence goes back as far as the 7th century in Asia, while drums go back even further.

Drums were spread across the world by African tribes when slave trading started. The drums were highly important in their rituals and religious ceremonies. At that time, simple beaters were used to derive the sound.

During the middle ages, drums became highly popular in the Western society. They were often used for musical performances, but had an even greater use during war and battles when it came to relaying formation orders. Their sound reached far and was easily heard over the battle noise.

A wooden stick which was used to beat that drum and led to the development of the current drum sticks. The original features of the sticks consisted of a tip, a shoulder which is below the tip, a shaft, and the butt which is the bottom of the stick. Those features didn't change over time.

Some innovations did take place though. In 1958, drummer and woodworker Joe Calato came up with a drum stick that had a nylon tip, instead of a wooden one. The wooden drum sticks wore out rather quickly, but the nylon tip assured they lasted much longer.

Nowadays, the choice in drum sticks is far wider then it has ever been. There are ergonomic sticks, glow-in-the-dark sticks, graphite sticks, and aluminum sticks.

It is a comfort knowing that one will never be without sticks to beat the drum!

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