July 31st, 2006

Quinto Sample Pack:

These notes are the same for all samples in the pack and are the same for all three Sample Packs (Natal Quinto Conga and Tumbadora) beyond this point.


1 in a set of 3 Natal congas, recorded individually with a Sure SM57 microphone placed very close to the skin of the drum. The signal went direct from the mic into a MOTU 828MKII. No mixing desk was used. The samples were taken and edited using Logic 7 in 24 bit resolution at a 96Khz sample rate.

The recording was made after midnight, minimizing extraneous noise, as this was not made in a studio. Nevertheless there is a loud ringing sound somewhere in the region of 800Hz (you can measure it) after the louder notes. This is caused by the nature and contents of the tiled room.

I have left plenty of space at the end of each sample for the ambiance to ring. If the user doesn't want the ring to be a featured then I suggest using the decay and sustain settings on a sampler's AHDSR generator or just chop them off and fade with a digital editor.

I have not attempted to make easy loops etc these samples are for those who want something to programme creatively with. There are plenty of alternate takes of each sound, offering plenty of feel in a groove or simply alternative hits.

The start points were edited to where the sample visibly began to rise above room silence. This is sometimes noticeably in advance of the strike as the playing hand pushes air past the microphone, which is very close to the action. This creates more feel and less regimented programming. That’s half the point. If you don’t like that then edit them tighter or buy a sample CD.

You should be able to get something towards a live feel yet quantized if you want to. Just write your groove and shift the start time of the loop a few milliseconds backwards maybe.

There may be noise of hands moving, breathing or whatever after the note as I have left plenty of sample time at the end. Take it or leave it. If you include the movement immediately after, it should link nicely with the following beat the way they are currently edited. Running the samples monophinicly per drum should do the trick and make the flow sound a bit more live than a stiff drum machine type effect.

The SM57 really starts to do its thing with the louder notes, you can really hear the compressed effect. It behaves like an ear: The louder the sound, the bigger the buffer of compressed air against the diaphragm. There is no compressor in the chain and no post-processing.

Filenames with 'MoveHand' and 'MoveTap' are edits of taps on the drum changing pitch by moving the left hand or a finger of, which rests on the skin, to different positions, i.e. further from the centre of the drum each time. 'MoveHand' is what you hear between the taps.

Other filename abbreviations:

C= Closed note (either whole hand resting in middle of drumhead or bouncing off it).

H= Heel note (a 'transit' or 'shuffle' note linking the louder notes - the 'heel-tip’ is a consecutive movement with the same hand)

T= Tip of the fingers usually played whilst heel is resting on drum: a 'grace' note or transit played as part of a flowing 'heel-tip' movement

O= Open note; the full sound of a drum being played allowing the skin to resonate and the pitch to be clearly heard. The main note of the drum.

M = Mute or muffled note, made by striking just a little bit more toward the edge than for an open note and not releasing the hand. The skin must not resonate but the body of the drum must for full impact. This can be a surprisingly loud note, sometimes louder than an open note.

Tap= Left hand muting the drum by resting on it, left hand strikes the edge of the surface producing a small nutty sound, variable in pitch depending on the location of the left muting hand.

aTum = Tumbau - (a dissection of) a Cuban rhythm sampled note for note and labeled aTum/bTum/cTum etc sequentially to indicate the order in the rhythmic motif played. This is not a traditional Tumbau but my own development using a Tap instead of a slap and played on a Quinto instead of more usually a Conga.

z in the filename is my way of grouping sounds. In this case, as the open notes of a Quinto progress towards the edge of the drum, the sound gets lighter and changes character.

The stick samples played on the conga (all with the right hand) are either on the fibre glass body, on the metal rim, a tuning lug or on the skin of the drum either open or with a finger of the left hand touching the skin to change the tone.

These three drums could be played individually as in traditional music (rumba, conga, samba etc) or together by one player in a band. Solos might then involve all 3 drums.

In Afro-Cuban Rumba:

Tumba (dora) is the lowest and largest of the set of 3. The Mother drum. Calls the changes.
Conga is the middle drum of the set of 3. Holds it down. Responds to the call.
Quinto is the highest in the set of 3.Used for solos and punctuation.

Tumbau = (L)Heel/Tip/(R)Slap/(L)Tip/Heel/Tip/(R)Open/Open


Peace & Dub

Ramjac 2006



  • avatar
    frosthardr 8 years, 11 months ago

    might use, thanks


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