Pandeiros are considered to be the Brazilian national instrument and an icon of samba. Pandeiros are a tambourine with a head made of either animal (usually goat or calf) skin or plastic. The jingles (metal discs) have a drier sound than most American tambourines, and the pandeiro's jingles are mounted with the hollow sides facing each other. They come in various sizes, from 8" to 16" across. The most common sizes are 10", 11" and 12". Although the pandeiro is most commonly associated with samba, it is also used in almost all other Brazilian rhythms and music, including rock, funk and pop. Playing it well requires some practice, but once the techniques have been learned the pandeiro offers an amazing array of musical possibilities. To see our other types of tambourines, view our Main Tambourines Page.