Steel drums, also known as steel pans, and sometimes, collectively with other musicians, as a steel band or orchestra, is a musical instrument originating from Trinidad and Tobago. Steel drum musicians are called pannists.
The modern drum is a chromatically pitched percussion instrument made from 55 gallon industrial drums that formerly contained chemicals.
Steel pans are the only instruments made to play in the Pythagorian musical cycle of fourths and fifths.
Drum refers to the steel drum containers from which the pans are made; the steel drum is more correctly called a steel pan or pan as it falls into the idiophone family of instruments, and so is not a drum.
The pan is struck using a pair of straight sticks tipped with rubber; the size and type of rubber tip varies according to the class of pan being played. Some musicians use four pansticks, holding two in each hand.
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