Introducing Radio Shack’s Drum Workshop!


Welcome to Radio Shack’s drum sample workshop. If you’re interested in learning more about this site, feel free to browse around. Be sure to catch our most recent article on percussion tips & tricks! We’re happy you’re here and hope you enjoy this once in a lifetime opportunity of seeing Radio Shack reach out to the community by diversifying its target market. Thanks!

Here’s a little video to portray what we aim to achieve:

TeamRadioShack field trip to Amsterdam

Team Radio Shack’s field trip to Amsterdam!

In a weird way percussion drums and weed go together. How often don’t we think of the hippie type, with long dirty hair that holds several flowers, sitting on the ground smoking weed and playing the bongo? Of course we at Team Radio Shack don’t fit that stereotype at all but nonetheless we at Team Radio Shack went for a one-week trip to Amsterdam in January. We were already in contact with some local drummers and had a nice time doing workshops with them. We also took our time to explore Amsterdam and have some really nice diners. One diner really stood out. This was in what the Dutch in Amsterdam call a ‘huiskamerrestaurant’. You can eat food cooked by a superstar chef in a location that resembles your living room.

During the day we were primarily walking and seeing the beautiful city of Amsterdam. And it is absolutely beautiful. The canals and the special houses next to it are a sight to behold. You can walk around for hours and get completely lost at the same time. We also had the good fortune of coming around a time where the Amsterdam Light festival was around. This made the city extra beautiful. This was nice because we had a little bit of bad luck with the weather. In the winter you hope of course to be walking in beautiful snow but it was very rainy. So the beautiful artwork spread all across the city made it a lot better.



Amsterdam is of course a very famous city. It is the biggest city of the Netherlands and because of the weed and prostitution policy it is notorious for tourists from all around the world to come and smoke and engage in ‘other’ activities. You can see their influence especially in the center of Amsterdam and in the nightlife of Amsterdam. Our first night we went out in the touristy center of Amsterdam to a big and expensive nightclub. This was horrible. We encountered a lot of drunk and obnoxious tourists that behaved badly. Tourists from England, Eastern European countries and Russia stood out in bad behavior. The nights after that we first asked our local Dutch friends where the good places where. We had some awesome experiences. For example a small and very cool pool bar and a club that was remote from all other clubs and had a very cool, underground feel to it.

Like I said, one of the coolest things was the private dining Amsterdam cooking experience. In this kind of restaurant you eat in someone’s living room. But it’s not just normal, average food. You eat in an absolutely beautifully designed living room and diner is cooked by one of the best chefs in the Netherlands. This way you get a very special experience. We can guarantee that a trip to Amsterdam when done right is absolutely amazing and besides the bad weather it couldn’t be better. We really want to go back in spring.

Because it was very rainy the week we were in Amsterdam we did had to find a way to spend some time inside. Now I won’t tell who but of course some of us wanted to try some of the possibilities of recreational drug use in Amsterdam. Because of course it is famous for this. We picked a really cool nice shop with a good vibe where we could totally chill and yes we did spend some time there. But of course we also did some high culture stuff. We went to the most famous museum of the Netherlands which was awesome but also did some very funny ones like the Sex museum and the Tattoo museum. Outside we also walked through the red light district which is a very interesting but also kind of sad experience.

Percussion Tips & Tricks


We had some folks at the workshop ask if we could put together some percussion tips & tricks, so here it is!

 TIP 1: Building Latin rhythm 

congas2“Conga is the heartbeat of Latin music, combined with a lot of other instruments. Conga is no percussion instrument in itself: it is the combination of congas, bongos, timbales, cowbell, … These drums sounds together create the groove. You can find free real drum samples for these instruments on the internet. Something very different from pop music as we know it: The drummer and the bassist give the basics, the rest of the tools make drum samples that enrich groove.

The conga usually has a simple pattern that is constantly repeated. You can keep all that percussion sec and thereby give the rest of the song a lot of space, but you might as well combine the congas with other percussion instruments so you get a vibe that you’ll face as a percussionist lot of freedom. The instrument is even used for producing hip hop drum sounds.

TIP 2: Alternative arrangement

Every musician has his training or his practice sessions to learn certain techniques and these must be mastered to create the ultimate drum sounds. Certainly percussionists and drummers tend to have a certain riff or fill that they can use when they play something new. Well What I recommend is to always go back the basics of percussion: what do I want to do as a percussionist? I want a package to color or just want to add value to what is already there? Focus your attention on what you want to do so again and try to challenge yourself. Ask yourself: what can I do? What are my strengths? What are my weaknesses? I want to improve those weaknesses if I want to exploit more stronger sides? I think it is always good to exploit your strengths.

TIP 3: Congas in pop I

There are advantages and disadvantages to the conga as an instrument. The advantage is that you can create great music with free drum samples and the colors that you can give to a basic beat as we know it in the West. Specific groove Of course there is also immediately the biggest drawback: congas give a very specific color (drum sounds) to your music.

TIP 4: Congas in pop II

The basic function of drums in the pop world is congasthat they give structure and a groove to the song. Congas cannot do that because they are not powerful enough. In the pop world as we know it, the real drum sounds of the conga are just the little brother of the rhythm. Then you have to know your place well if conga players will always be something in the pop music that complements the groove and creates atmosphere. You can in other words, what the drummer is doing, complete with a melody, but you can also in a very different way to give color to the rhythm with these drum samples section by building a next step. Of course, you will first have to match well with the drummer, but that’s an art in itself. Thanks for reading on this site!

Various Percussion And Their Drum Sample Sounds


In this article the following percussion instruments will be discussed; The Darbuka, Frame Drum/Bendir, Indian Tabla, and the Cajon. These instruments create very unique drum sample sounds and can really add something extra when working in music production. Lets get started: Darbuka (also darabuka, derbouka (Fr.) or tarabuka) is a vase drum, and it is used especially in the Balkans, the Middle East and the rest of the Arab world. The right-hand turn (towards the center) the heavy beat, ‘doom’ and the so-called ‘branch’ on the edge of the drumhead. The left hand fills the rhythm (usually with additional ‘power). It is important to note that there are two types darbuka, the Egyptian and the Greek / Turkish model, both producing their own unique drum sound. You often play the Greek / Turkish model with the left hand to cut the edge of the drumhead (branch) with the fingers. However, when playing the Egyptian model that technique is rarely used and you will play the instrument differently. There have been many music producers that use these as hip hop drum samples. It adds nice diversity to the music. Some producers even go as far as saying it makes for the best drum samples they’ve ever heard due to the distinct ethic timbre. Continuing on, the darbuka in Greece, also called toumberleki is well known and often used in combination with a lira (kementsje). Which can create a very special sound. In case you are producing music and you want to implement the darbuka in one of your track. Make sure you find some real samples to make it sound as real and lively as possible.

Here’s a good video of these types drums:

Frame Drum / Bendir

A framedrum is a drum of which the drum head is stretched and tuned over a wooden, cylindrical ring. A clear characteristic for frame drums is that the drumhead diameter is much grater than the height of the frame or ring, creating nice drum sounds. Again just as with the darbuka when using samples, make sure you use real samples for adapting the frame drum in your music, for the best sounding results. You can even find free drum samples on the web, such as, if you search well.

Congas (Great for Latin music)

congasA conga is about 70-75 cm high and is a safe drum, barrel-shaped and open at the bottom, which is usually played with hands. The trunk is hollowed to an hourglass-shaped vase, which is then covered with a shaved skin which is pulled right by ropes for the correct tension in order to produce the real drum sounds – this is why a lot of audio engineers use them for real drum samples, they just sound so authentic! The skin must be strong and supple. An antelope skin, therefore, is the most appropriate, but since the antelope poaching has become scarce and prohibited, goatskin is now commonly used. The origin of the instrument can be found in the Congolese Makuta drum back. This was taken to Cuba by slaves and eventually became important in the Cuban music. After 1930, New York’s jazz orchestras discovered the real drum sounds of the conga, and the instrument was gradually established in the western music. The conga received over the years a lot of changes in form and appearance. Today, the conga is thicker. The instrument is made of wood or fiberglass. Wooden congas generate generally warmer, fuller and deeper drum sounds than fiberglass congas…This is really reflected in conga drum samples too. However, congas from fiberglass usually have a brighter and slightly more powerful character than their wooden brethren. If you look hard enough, you can probably find some free drum samples of congas online…You won’t regret it.

For Drum Types Click The Picture



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