Broom (percussion)

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A broom , also called a jazz broom , is a special type of drumstick .


The history of the broom began in New Orleans in the early 1900s . Based on the tradition of the barbers' rhythmic sweeping of brooms ( barbershop music tradition) and brushing the shoe shiners , drummers were looking for a softer sound. They experimented with fly swatters made of fine metal wires, which were very similar to the special jazz brooms produced from around 1920.


The brooms consist of a shaft that serves as a handle. This consists of a rubber-coated metal tube, plastic or wood. The wires of the broom have different thicknesses and can be made of (light) metal or plastic. In some variants, they can be pulled into the inside of the shaft with a metal rod . In this way, the opening angle of the wire fan and thus its hardness acting against the batter head can be changed.


Brooms have a soft, flowing and gentle sound what the ideal conditions for the interpretation of jazz - ballads are. They are used in many styles of music, such as modern jazz , country , Dixieland, and New Orleans jazz .

Style of play

Wipe ” or “stir” technique: The purpose is to create a constant, rhythmically rustling sound ( sustain ). One hand moves in a circle on the snare , while the other hand phrases or creates a continuous swing rhythm. This varies depending on the desired style. A rough drum skin surface (natural skin or coated plastic skin) is required for this wiping broom sound.

With a broom you can work with a beating like with sticks, but the sound and the beating behavior are completely different.

The cymbals can be played either with the shaft (handle) or the wires.

See also


Individual evidence

  1. ^ Gerry Paton: The Richmond Assault: a short history of barber-musicians and their role in the development of brush-playing . 2018, ISBN 978-1-73080-709-1 , pp. 302 .
  2. Garry Patton: Never Swat a Fly! the origins of brush playing in jazz. (No longer available online.) 2015, archived from the original on December 29, 2016 ; accessed on December 1, 2017 (English).
  3. ^ Garry Patton: What Swat - A guide to early wire brushes. (No longer available online.) 2010, archived from the original on December 1, 2017 ; accessed on December 1, 2017 (English).
  4. Clayton Cameron: Brushworks: the new language for playing brushes . Carl Fischer, 2003, ISBN 978-0-8258-4962-6 .