The Definitive Bongo Drum Sound Sample Pack: Free Download


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There’s a lot of very boring samples of the bongo drums out there. The reason why is that most samplers aren’t aware that the bongo drums have very specific techniques that make the bongo drums interesting and dynamic. I sought to remedy this and make my own sample pack.

This free bongo drum sample pack consists of 54 samples–making this the most comprehensive bongo drum sample pack in existence.

Most samples you’ll find of the bongo drums consist of two samples: one of the hembra (the bigger drum), and one of the macho (the smaller drum). What’s crazy is that I’m giving you this sample pack for free!

You can get the sample pack here: bongo-samples.zip. (23MB)

If you’d like to see what I’m doing to make these sounds, you can check out my YouTube video:

Bongo Martillo Sample

As an example of the variety and dynamics of this sample pack, I threw together an extremely simple rhythm–the famous Martillo rhythm. I did these as straight eighth notes with no additional processing. I did not alter volume, timing, or made any efforts at humanization.

Martillo

The possibilities are huge with this sample pack.

Individual Samples

For your convenience, I’ll put all the individual samples so you can download just the ones you want if you’d prefer in .mp3 format. If you would rather have these as raw .wav files, download the zip file above. I’ve organized this samples by the type of bongo technique.

  • Manoteo (heel, toe)
  • Muted Strike
  • Open
  • Rimshot
  • Slap
  • Flick
  • Bongo Drum Rub

Manoteo

The Manoteo is the rocking motion commonly used in the martillo rhythm. The heel being your thumb pressing into the drum and the toe being the last few fingers of your hand.

Heel

High Drum (Macho):
Quiet
Medium
Loud

Low Drum (Hembra)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Toe

High Drum (Macho):

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Low Drum (Hembra)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Muted Strike

The muted strike is made by pressing one thumb into the drum and then striking near the edge of the drum with the other hand to produce a high pitched strike.

High Drum (Macho)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Low Drum (Hembra)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Open

An open tone is the simplest to make–it’s simply made by striking and releasing the drum allowing some resonance.

High Drum (Macho)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Low Drum (Hembra)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Rimshot

The rimshot is just like it sounds–you strike the rim of the drum for a very resonant sound.

High Drum (Macho)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Low Drum (Hembra)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Slap

The slap is made by cupping the hand and striking the drum. Almost as if you were palming the bongo drums.

High Drum (Macho)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Low Drum (Hembra)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Flick

To make the flick sound you flick the bongo drums like you did your little brother’s forehead. The one difference is that this makes a much cooler sound then a “heyyyyyyyy” that your brother probably made.

High Drum (Macho)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Low Drum (Hembra)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Bongo Drum Rub

This sound is made simply by rubbing the bongo drumhead.

High Drum (Macho)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Low Drum (Hembra)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

5-Stroke Roll

A quick 5-stroke roll, which is very common in many Latin rhythms.

High Drum (Macho)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Low Drum (Hembra)

Quiet
Medium
Loud

Tools Used

  • Microphone: SM-57
  • Bongos: LP Aspire
  • Bongosero: Me

Peter Mitchell

Founder of this website. Lover of sound, music, hot sauce, and technology.

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