I would like to start off this review with a disclaimer – I have been a drumset player for over 10 years and have only dabbed in percussion duties sparingly here and there. I picked up this little guy at Guitar Center after seeing a youtube demo video and it looked like a good way to experiment for the price of a good dinner. I have later decided this was one of the best percussive purchases I’ve made…
I’ve played traditional min-bongos before, and it never felt comfortable to hold. Either the tuning pegs would get in the way of my hands or the thing would slip out of position when I was just getting into the groove.
The bongo-cajon has none of those problems. There are no tuning pegs to dig into your thighs, the flat side panels allow the bongo to stay in position much longer (depending on the fabric you are wearing), the corners and edges are smooth all around and the playing surface easily doubles that of traditional mini-bongos.
The sound is loud and the tone is smooth, I actually had a hard time putting it down once I started playing. It’s not quite as organic as a real pair of mini-bongos, but the sound certainly has its own flavour. Accents on the hi-pitch area are especially articulate and cutting, giving off a woodblock like quality. Anyone who can air drum / finger drum will do well on the bongo-cajon, perhaps even better than when on a drumkit.