Percussion Mallets

Percussion mallets.

Various percussion mallets are commonly used on the harp.

Production

Percussion mallets can be used to hit single strings, hit clusters of strings, or to make tremolos. 

For single string hits it is best to use a mallet with a small head, for example a hard marimba mallet or a timpani mallet. Bigger mallets will hit two or three strings at a time.

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Single hit with marimba mallet.

Tremolos are produced by using two mallets, one in each hand. Soft mallets will produce a drone-like sound while hard mallets give a clear tremolo sound.

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Tremolo with soft timpani mallets.

Rattan mallets or the handles of other percussion mallets are often used to create rattling sounds against a string.

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Rattan rattling against a string.

Rattan mallets or other sticks can also be used to make guiro sounds on the tuning pins.

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Rattan guiro on tuning pegs.

Sound

The sound of strings hit with percussion mallets depends on the material and size of the mallet. 

 

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Single hit with hard rubber mallet/drumstick

 

 

Notation

A verbal explanation is needed.