25 Facts About Drums & Drumming Statistics

drumming facts

Percussion instruments, like drums, are the backbone of many musical arrangements. Here are a few interesting global percussion industry statistics to enjoy while listening to your favorite beats!

Percussion Industry Statistics

  1. Global revenue in the percussion industry amounts to $1.62 billion in 2022. (Statista)
  2. China creates the most revenue in the industry, with $346.30 million in 2022. (Statista)
  3. North America generates the biggest percussion instrument sales, accounting for 34.4% of the revenue in 2021. (Grand View Research)
  4. The global percussion instrument market size stood at $1.5 billion in 2021. (Grand View Research)
  5. Per person revenue for the percussion industry is $0.45 in the US and $0.20 in Asia. (Statista)
  6. The Asia Pacific Region is expected to grow the fastest at a CAGR of 1.6% between 2022 to 2028. (Grand View Research)
  7. The market for percussion instruments is expected to grow annually by 4.37%. (Statista)
  8. The most sizeable segment of the percussion instrument market comes from professional use, which accounted for over 65% in 2021. (Grand View Research)
  9. Offline sales of percussion instruments make up around 60% of all sales. (Market Growth Reports)
  10. Drum kits, which are the most popular percussion instruments, cost an average of $500 to $1,000. 
  11. The most expensive drum kit sold at auction is Ringo Starr’s Ludwig drum kit, which sold for $2,100,000 in 2015. (Guinness World Records)
  12. For the percussion industry, the educational segment is predicted to grow fastest from 2022 to 2028 at a rate of 1.5% CAGR. (Grand View Research)
  13. Traditional percussion instruments amount to 79% of instrument sales, with the rest being electronic percussion instruments. (Grand View Research)
  14. The top four manufacturers in the percussion industry are Pearl Music Instrument, Yamaha, Gretsch Drums, and Drum Workshop, accounting for 45% of the market share. (Market Growth Reports)
  15. Percussion industry growth slowed down in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic. (Grand View Research)
  16. In the musical instrument industry, percussion instrument sales are the smallest behind wind and string instruments. (Statista)
  17. Percussion is the oldest group of instruments with unique instruments found globally. (Omaha School of Music & Dance)

There are also many more facts about drums that are quirky and unusual! Read on to find some interesting facts about drums that you may not know about.

Fascinating Facts About Drums

18. Drums Have Been Used to Communicate Over Long Distances

African tribal drummers were so skilled at drumming that they could accurately mimic speech patterns through performing rhythms. This was used to send messages long distances to other tribesmen who would otherwise be out of earshot. This skill was used by tribespeople as far apart as Ghana and Southern Africa!

19. You Can Play Drums With One Arm!

rick allen

Next on the list of fun facts about drums: You can play difficult drum parts with only one arm!

Rick Allen of Def Leppard fame joined up with the band when he was just fourteen – his mum wrote in reply to the ad looking for a drummer on his behalf! – but lost his arm while they were still on their way to legendary status.

After recovering, he rearranged his gear to use extra foot pedals to replace the drum set components he used to operate with his left arm. His disability has not held him back at all, and he came 7th on Gigwise’s list of The Greatest Drummer of All Time.

20. Drums are The Oldest Instrument

Drums have not changed much over the millennia. The form of a drum has stayed virtually the same: a skin or membrane stretched tightly over a hollow contained space that provides the reverberation needed to make the sound.

There are, of course, modern drums, such as electronic drums, and drum tuners exist that make it possible to dramatically alter the sound, and various improvements to the layout, manufacture, and sound – but if you were to time-travel to the earliest drum user and bring him (or her) to modern times, they would instantly recognize a modern drum – and be able to use it too!

The oldest drum that has been found was dated to 5,500BC – or 7,500 years old – but it is almost certain that our prehistoric ancestors would have used some kind of percussion to chase away predators, inspire speed and intensity on a hunt or in battle, and even to attract a mate or celebrate a success or joyful event.

21. Drums Have Been Featured In Every Civilisation

Traditional drum

There is no sustained period of time or civilization that has risen, existed, and fallen without being touched, in some way, by drums. They have been used in a wealth of ways: to announce celebrations, to declare war, to psyche up soldiers, and to quicken the pace of movements of everyone from rowers to soldiers on the march.

There have been times when drumming has declined in popularity, such as in pre-Renaissance Europe, or has been threatened by external forces, such as the American plantation owners fearing that drums would be used to incite rebellion and riots amongst their slaves, leading them to ban the practice of singing, music and dancing.

22. The World Record for Most Nationalities in a Drum Circle is 77

Another record was broken in 2019 when the Australian city of Stirling was determined to strike a blow for harmony and diversity. They succeeded in bringing together over 100 drummers of 77 different nationalities to play together for long enough to satisfy the Guinness Records judge. They succeeded and hold the title of ‘most nationalities in a drum circle‘.

23. The Heartbeat is Our First Sound

As we gain shape and form, the first thing we become aware of is our mother’s heartbeat: a steady beat that accompanies everything from that point until we are born.

With hearing being the first sense to arrive, our almost primitive attraction to a compelling beat becomes more understandable and adds something wholesome to this list of facts about drums.

24. The Largest Drum Set Has 340 Pieces

World's largest drum set

It wouldn’t be a complete list of drumming facts without mentioning who owns the world’s largest drum set! The world’s largest drum set is comprised of a staggering 340 pieces and its owned by Dr. Mark Temperato.

He has been growing this drum set for over 40 years and it takes 4 people over 15 hours to set it all up! Temperato describes himself as an “agent of rhythm” and it’s clear to see why!

25. The Most Beats Per Minute is 2,109

Believe it or not, the world record for the most drum beats in one minute goes to Siddharth Nagarajan who smashed the world record with a colossal 2,109 beats.

Siddharth is a professional drummer from India and used an alternate single-stroke sticking drum pattern with multiple stick bounces on each stroke to achieve the world record. However he did it; that is a highly impressive 35 beats per second! He earned his record some years ago on Valentine’s Day in 2017, in plenty of time to get himself a comfortable place on this list of facts about drums.

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