For Beginner Players

Do I need to know anything about music to play the HAPI Drum?

The Mini, Bell, Aura, Slim, and Origin Drums come in pentatonic scales. The word "pentatonic" comes from the Greek word pente meaning five and tonic meaning tone. It is a musical scale that consists of five notes within one octave. Because of their arrangement, pentatonic scales are often used to introduce beginners to music. There are no wrong notes! You can play any note in any order and the drum will sound great! Our Tini Drum comes in a minor scale based on A, with the pitches A, B, C, D, E, F, and G. Its key signature has no flats and no sharps. It includes numbers for the drum, the included instruction book has 12 songs for you to play along with.

What drum is right for me as a non-musician?

All of our fixed tuning drums (Mini, Bell, Aura, Slim, Origin) are a great choice for a non-musician. These drums are fixed to one scale. Our tuneable drums require some understanding of music theory and use of a chromatic tuner to change the scale.

What scale should I choose?

We have narrowed down your scale choices in each drum model to the most popular and best sounding ones. Our scales are compatible with other instruments and with other HAPI Drums. It just comes down to your personal preference and which scale "speaks to you" the most. Click here to listen to all the scales, use a good pair of headphones for the best sound quality.

What are your highest and lowest voiced instruments?

The HAPI Tini our highest voiced drum. The HAPI Mini is next and is great for rhythmic melodies. The HAPI Aura and Slim are our mid-range drum, versatile drums that have lows and highs. They can play slow or fast rhythms. The HAPI Origin is our low-voice drum, great for slow meditative ethereal style playing. The HAPI UFO is mid to low-voiced, this drum sounds best when playing 2 to 3 notes simultaneously to build chords. The UFO Drum is a more intermediate to advance level instrument.

Does the drum need to be plugged in or amplified in any way to sound good?

No! These are a true acoustic instrument with a strong, powerful sound. 

Can I only play the drum in my lap?

Most steel tongue drums on the market can only be played in your lap. This is because if you set the drum on a table or hard surface it will dampen the sound severely. We have added isolating rubber feet to our drums. Our rubber feet solve this problem and give you the perfect sound in your lap or on any playing surface.

Can the HAPI Drums be played by hand?

Yes! It does take practice to learn this technique. One finger is used, to get a clean sound it takes what is called a "percussive stroke or slap". The drum comes with a booklet that explains this technique. It takes most people a few days of practice to master. It is similar to playing a tabla drum.

Here is a good overview of the HAPI Drum that also shows the hand playing technique from our friend Kalani:

Best Sellers:

HAPI Drum Steel Tongue Drum Mini

HAPI Mini Steel Tongue Drum
  • These mini drums have a big sound at a small price!
  • Dimensions: 8" wide x 5.5" high. Weight: 3.4 lbs.
  • Available in: C Major or D Akebono
Price: $159
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HAPI Steel Tongue Drum Slim

HAPI Slim Steel Tongue Drum
  • Slim and sleek design.
  • Dimensions: 12" wide by 6" high. Weight: 7 lbs.
  • Available in: A Akebono or G Major.
Price: $245
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HAPI Steel Tongue Drum Omni

HAPI Omni Steel Tongue Drum
  • An innovative tongue drum shape with a great sound!
  • Dimensions: 15" wide by 5" tall. 7.5 lbs.
  • Available in: G Major or F Major.
Price: $296
Click here for more details.