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The chocalho

The chocalho

The chocalho is a kind of "wand" with jingles ("cymbalettes" probably of Portuguese origin, for religious processions), which number can exceed one hundred! The handle can be wood, in the middle, or be constituted by a rectangular frame made of steel.

How to handle the chocalho In the first case, we can use it with one or two hands, in the second, only with both hands. The cymbalettes are usually steel and mix pandeiro and classic (European) tambourine cymbalettes, which gives it a sound that is both dry and powerful, with rich timbre (super high and high pitched tones). This power is needed to resonate in the street, which tends to emphasize the bass more than the high tones. The timbre, the playing techniques and basic rhythms of chocalho approaching the ganza, we prefer the last, less strong for clubs and small bands of musicians.

In my opinion, it is especially an excellent muscle-building and endurance instrument for the biceps and triceps (especially when played for 2 hours in a row, as it is often the case during parades)!

chocalho sound demo

chocalho basic samba pattern

Marc De Douvan, October 2005, translation in English: May 2013.

© 2005 Marc de Douvan Crédits Mentions légales