A drum is a membranophone that gives a sound by striking a stretched membrane with a stick, usually rounded.
Drums consist of a cylinder (body), a membrane stretched by tuning keys which tighten or loosen that membrane to achieve a certain sound or tone. It’s the vibration of the membrane when struck that creates the sound.
Drums appeared as far back as 6000 BC. Mesopotamian excavations unearthed drum cylinders dated 3000 BC. Caves in Peru showed wall markings of drums and the American Indians used wooden drums for special rituals and ceremonies. Drums were used for more than making Music. Civil uses, messaging and religious uses are but a few to mention.
A drum kit on the other hand is a grouping of various toned drums. In the marching and parade bands of New Orleans, the idea of one drummer playing more that one drum simultaneously was brought up. Cymbals and Tom Toms, invented in China, were then added to the drum kit and by 1930 the standard drum kit had taken shape. It consisted of a bass drum with a foot pedal, snare, tom toms, hi-hat cymbal and large hanging cymbals.
Rock drummers began the expansion of drum kits in 1960’s. Addition of bass drums, more cymbals and tom toms, electronic and synthesized drum sounds are also used in many modern styles of music.
Today, the drum kit is a must in the Arabic bands and studios. It is used in addition to many other drums and percussions such as the Darbouka or the Rik which gives the modern Arabic music a rich and colorful beat understood and appreciated worldwide.
Only the imagination and creativity of manufacturers and musicians can limit the expansion and the use of the drum kits and sounds.