Jam block

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Jam Block
Jam Block on white background.jpg
Percussion instrument
Classification Percussion
Hornbostel–Sachs classification 111.2
(Percussion idiophones)
Related instruments
slit drum, temple blocks, Log drums, muyu, wood block
LP Percussion

A jam block is a percussion instrument which is a modern, hard plastic version of the more fragile wood block, and is sometimes referred to as a "clave block", "gock block" or "tempo block". It is sturdy, designed for hard hitting and is becoming more and more popular with modern drummers and percussionists, due to its durability and sound.

Jam blocks are usually attached to timbales and drum kits or are used as stand alone orchestra instruments. These blocks are often used in Salsa, Cuban, and Latin American music, although some modern drummers have made use of them in rock songs. Jam blocks are often used in the marching percussion idiom as well.

There are several manufacturers of jam blocks, though they sell them under different names. The main manufacturers include LP, Pearl, Meinl and Toca.

There are various colours of block, these colours usually represent the pitch and are different for each manufacturer. Many other manufacturers use LP's Blue-Red classification system. Larger jam blocks have a lower pitch than smaller ones. Other variations of this instrument include the stealth jam block and the guiro jam block, a combination of the guiro and low pitch jam block, jam tamb, a variation of a tambourine, blast blocks, sambango bells and granite blocks

See also[edit]