Facts About African Musical Instruments

Discover The Continent's Cultures
Through Your Favorite African Instruments!

African Musical Instruments

You know what I love about African musical instruments? They allow us to learn about this continent's culture by participating in it! Wether you are a professional musician or a complete novice - I'm sure there's an instrument you'll enjoy to play.

Click here to find a large selection of African instruments available for purchase online.

Or do you rather listen and observe than participate? That's fine, too. This is the beauty of music: everybody can enjoy it. No matter which group you belong to:

The study of its instruments will show you the soul of a continent, where music is a part of everyday life. The more you learn about them, the more interesting it gets:

Learn About Traditional African Musical Instruments

When I first came to Ghana, I was surprised. The variety of musical instruments existing on this continent is larger than I had ever imagined! It's impossible to list them all on this page. But these examples will give you an idea of what's out there:

African Percussion Instruments

Djembe Drum Beginner's Guide

The continent's most famous musical instrument of all! All over the world, people have fallen in love with this drum. Here's everything you need to know as a beginner.

Other African Drums

Countless drums that nobody knows of deserve more attention. If the djembe-hype bores you, here is something new!

African Xylophone Cultures

The xylophone is one of the continent's most prominent instruments. Each tribe that plays it has it's own distinct xylophone tradition.

African Thumb Piano

Thumb pianos are deeply rooted in African culture and appear throughout the continent with a variety of names and features.

Axatse Gourd Rattles

Shakers and rattles can be found in every country in some form or another. The Axatse of the Ewe tribe in Ghana and Togo is just one example.

Gankogui Double Bell

Bells have many purposes. One of them is to provide the timeline in traditional music ensembles, as the Gankogui of the Ewe tribe shows.

Names of Percussion Instruments

This growing list is still incomplete, but already gives you an impression of the vast variety of percussion instruments alone. It doesn't even include:

String and Wind Instruments

Yes, there's more to African music than just percussion. This continent is also full of melody created by flutes and fiddles, harps, lutes and whistles.

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