Definition of snare drum in English:

snare drum

Pronunciation /ˈsner ˌdrəm/ /ˈsnɛr ˌdrəm/


  • A small drum in the form of a short cylinder with a membrane at each end, the upper one being struck with hard sticks and the lower one fitted with snares. It originated in military use.

    ‘Using only his bare hands, the drummer, Johnny Cobra, would sit slapping the busted head of the snare drum.’
    • ‘The rest of the instruments cut out except for James ' soft steady beat on the snare drum.’
    • ‘The sound is almost like brushes on a snare drum.’
    • ‘Their studio also has a large collection of snare drums.’
    • ‘I don't use any samples at all; the kick drums, snare drums, tom toms, everything is real.’
    • ‘The simplest sounds - the rustle of a snare drum, a snatch of vocals looped repeatedly - induce a trancelike state.’
    • ‘Predictably, snare drums conjure up images of US troops hastily moving through the desert.’
    • ‘The snare drum erupts, introducing the third movement.’
    • ‘The snare drum was part of a second-hand kit on internet auction site ebay.’
    • ‘The snare drum of the set resembles the side drum of the symphony orchestra - both drums derive from the medieval tabor.’
    • ‘We sent away to Germany one year for a few snare drums.’
    • ‘You could hear a baby cry and a bird chirp and the sound of bagpipes and snare drums.’
    • ‘At first, he helped carry the bass drum, and later played the snare drum.’
    • ‘I play guitar, bass drum, a tambourine on my foot and a snare drum.’
    • ‘On my left he played the saxophone and on my right he slapped against the snare drum.’
    • ‘Let me state hangovers and snare drums don't mix.’
    • ‘By the late 1990s, electric guitars, keyboards, and snare drums were common in urban areas.’
    • ‘On another session, I placed the mic above a snare drum that was hit with blast sticks.’
    • ‘Snare drums strike up an ominous patter that warns the audience this is a trick with real danger.’
    • ‘It opens with the flute and snare drums joined then by the trumpet in a festive mood.’


Probably from Middle Low German and Middle Dutch snare ‘harp string’.