The style of music the paseos currently play is very similar to the Conga Habanera (known as the “comparsa” rhythm to many musicians). The ensemble includes percussion and horns such as saxes trumpets, etc.
According to Mililián “Galí” Galis Riveri’s book La percusión en los ritmos afrocubanos y haitiano-cubanos, since the 1920s, the paseos have used two bass drums: the tambora (a larger bass drum) and tamborita (smaller drum, similar in size to a large tom-tom). Both of these are played with one hand and one hard mallet. A brief demonstration of these drums’ patterns can be viewed here. Transcriptions are available in Gali’s book.
Gali also points to the Paseos’ addition of cowbells and tumbadoras (conga drums) in the 1930s as a result of “influence of the Havana and Matanzas comparsas” .
Recordings of the paseos are pretty rare but here are some examples from a 1987 Egrem recording:
Vienen los pinos
El Zapato Angó
A Gozar con el Comercio
Galí’s book is one of the most comprehensive sources of Afro-cuban percussion styles I’ve seen. It includes rare transcriptions and descriptions of little known styles such as Tajona and Tumba Francesa from Oriente, as well as other drumming styles from Central and Western Cuba such as Gangá, Eguado, Bembé Obakosó, and Bembé Kuelé.
Main source :
Galís Riverí, Mililian. La percusión en los ritmos afrocubanos y haitiano-cubanos. Santiago de Cuba: Ediciones Caserón, 2015. Print.