Instrument of the Week: Bongos
The Bongos originated in the Eastern area of Cuba known as the “Oriente”, but also have origins in West-Africa. Considered an Afro-Cuban percussion instrument, they’re comprised of two small open bottomed drums that vary in size and make different high-pitched sounds.
Introduced into Cuban culture during the slave trade era, the bongos had become a Cuban staple by the late 19th century. Transcending into American culture, they have an association with Jazz musicians and the “Beatnik” movement of the late 50’s, early 60’s. Bongos are commonly heard in Salsa, jazz and African tribal music.