Part 2: Xaxado

Implied Brazilian Rhythms keyThe xaxado is a lively folk dance associated with baião rhythms, which also originated in the Pernambuco region of Brazil in the 1920s. The instruments normally used to accompany baião were incorporated into the xaxado and include accordion, triangle, and zabumba (bass drum).

Baião and xaxado rhythms sound similar, so you have to be careful to distinguish them. The xaxado consists of two muted tones and one open tone on the zabumba. (In baião, the pattern goes muted, open, muted.)Implied Brazilian Rhythms 1

In these next two examples, play the zabumba rhythms (the bottom notes) on the bass drum. Try to apply the muted and open tones with your foot, and play the upper notes as rimclicks on the snare.

Implied Brazilian Rhythms 2

Here is a beat that implies the xaxado feel. The left hand is switching between rimclicks and regular hits on the snare.

Implied Brazilian Rhythms 3

Now add some ghost notes on the snare and 16th notes on the hi-hat.

Implied Brazilian Rhythms 4

Here are two more beats that contain typical zabumba patterns on the bass drum.

Implied Brazilian Rhythms 5

Uka Gameiro was born in Recife, Brazil. He’s the author of the upcoming book Brazilian Pernambuco Rhythms: Implied Beats. For more info, visit