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How many sounds can you get from just one drum? Reuben Spyker proves that there are at least 30 sounds hidden in your snare drum – and you can access them without touching a tuning key!

The first 15 are the easiest to get:

  1. Cross stick
  2. Timbale (edge of rim)
  3. Rim shot
  4. Normal (center)
  5. Snare wires off
  6. Snare wires loose
  7. Edge of rim
  8. Wallet on snare
  9. Cut out drumhead on top
  10. Splash on top
  11. Tambourine on top
  12. Towel on top
  13. T-shirt on top
  14. Paper on top
  15. Shell rattles on top

You probably already know most of these techniques. But you’ll have to get really creative to get 15 more, and that requires thinking beyond the regular use of the snare drum.

Try some stick-on-stick ideas. And can you use your sticks to manipulate the sound of the drum? Move your cross stick up and down the rim to get a different sound. Try some scratching effects on a chewed up stick. Pull your stick across the rim to get a cool subtle effect.

The human body counts as part of a drummer’s instrument, too! Use your bare hands on the snare drum. Use your elbow to bend the pitch of snare drum. Or use one hand to mute the drum.

Play on the outside of the shell. You can even play the tension rods!

Try flipping over the snare and using the bottom – but be careful not to puncture the head. Use the wires (lightly) to get some cool scratching sounds.

Still looking for more options for snare sounds? Here are five more weird options:

  • Squeaky snare (pretty creepy)
  • Drag your fingers across a wet head
  • Tension rod shell rattle
  • Shell buzz
  • Talk into the snare

Don’t forget to watch the video for a demo. What other tricks do you have for getting even more out of your snare drum?


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