Meaning of maraca in English:


Pronunciation /məˈrakə/


  • A percussion instrument in the form of a hollow gourd or gourd-shaped container filled with dried beans or similar objects and played, usually in pairs, by being shaken.

    ‘One morning the youngest children shook maracas, banged small cymbals, and danced and skipped to international music in a room lined with colorful banners and maps.’
    • ‘Larger bands have trumpets and strings as well as extensive percussion sections in which maracas, guiros, and bongos are primary instruments.’
    • ‘That zone now belongs to the hordes of zealots invited there personally to take up maracas and other such percussion.’
    • ‘He jumps up on the riser, picks up a pair of maracas and gets them to double the tempo!’
    • ‘These three main patterns are amplified by turtle shells, claves, timbales, bongos, congas, maracas and tambourines.’
    • ‘We were given drums, triangles, maracas and tambourines to experiment with.’
    • ‘The men in sombreros were miked and amped and they were shaking maracas and playing guitar.’
    • ‘There have also been a number of instrument peripherals, from maracas and guitars to turntables.’
    • ‘Throughout the song, we hear tinkling piano, barely-tapped chimes and sporadic maracas.’
    • ‘Nearby, a pair of high-school girls shook wired maracas, precisely mimicking a pair of maraca-shaking characters on a video screen.’
    • ‘Its instruments include maracas, drums, and turtle shells.’
    • ‘The clack and tip tap of the dancers heeled shoes echoed in short rhythmic steps to the time of the varied instruments: seeded maracas and strings of hand made guitars, violins, flutes and drums.’
    • ‘In sharp contrast - and contrasts define the album - marimba, piano and maracas set up a sepia-tone backdrop for track two, ‘The Nurse’.’
    • ‘He recalled that he'd flown the coup, aged 17, and learned to play the maracas, harmonica and guitar.’
    • ‘‘White Moon’ is a slow piano paean, stinging with maracas, moonlight-sonata piano, and subtle drums.’
    • ‘But any concert that features mock sadomasochism, skull-shaped maracas and an accordion player wearing tinted goggles is either the work of lunatics or of a band with a very healthy sense of irony indeed.’
    • ‘Bonus points awarded to the band for having a guy named Iggi Sniff playing tambourine and maracas; double bonus points to Mr. Sniff for getting a gig playing tambourine and maracas.’
    • ‘Some of today's Grenadian American calypso bands also use electric guitars, maracas, and steel drums.’
    • ‘The band's sound was driven by the four-strong marimba/drum section, which was augmented by bass guitar, saxophone, maracas and two electric guitars - one rhythm, the other lead.’
    • ‘And despite a lack of any real visual element to their performance (apart from when the guitarist downs tools for a bit to hit some maracas with a stick) they are never dull.’


Early 17th century from Portuguese maracá, from Tupi.