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How to Identify Parts of a Drum Set

Learn how to identify the parts of a drum set from drum teacher Jason Gianni in this Howcast drum video.


We're going to take you through all the parts of the drum set now, each individual drum and what makes up the full drums. Basically right now I'm sitting in front of what's called the 5-Piece Set. 5-Piece indicates the amount of drums that you have, one, two, three, four, five, the fifth one being on the floor. We're going to start with that drum on the floor and the largest one, called the bass drum, that's entitled the bass drum.

The one right in front of you is called the snare drum. We call that the snare drum because it has wires on the bottom, if you listen, called snares, and we're able to turn those wires on and off. The drums in front of me are called toms or tom-toms, and, or they're also known as rat toms, back in the day when the drum set was created about a hundred years ago, it was initially called a contraption set, or a trap set, which a lot of parts were brought together to create a setup, and when they used to put percussion devices on a rack, and little tom-toms on a rack, so that name has stuck through the years, and now we call them the rat toms. The last tom right here is called the floor tom. It's suspended off the ground, and there are two types of floor toms, suspended floor toms, and toms that have legs.

This one particularly has legs which sits on the ground. The second floor tom would be suspended off of a stand, usually to your right over there. Now the cymbals here that I have in front of me is a standard cymbal setup on a 5-Piece kit. You have a high hat over here, which is comprised of two cymbals, played together by a pedal on a stand. You have a crash cymbal off to the left side, which is also on a stand, and you have the ride cymbal off to the right side.

And again, this is your typical setup, what you have here. The tom-toms often are on a post that goes through the center of your bass drum called the tom-tom mount, this one the toms are on separate mounts on stands, and either way you'll find that on any type of drum set you'll find different variations on how these are set up. So again, this is your standard setup right here.

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