Music: New Pop Records, Sep. 5, 1955

Long before World War II. the government of Caribbean Trinidad banned bamboo drum bands in order to stop bloody street fights between competing drummers. For a while there was comparative quiet, but with the war and the arrival of U.S. forces came a deluge of 50-gallon oil drums, and some inventive fellows discovered a way to make them into musical instruments. They divided the heads into pie-shaped segments, peened them until each segment gave on': a separate musical note when struck with padded sticks. For "bass booms" the drums were left full length, for baritones they were, chopped in half, for...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!