The Darkuba

Middle Eastern music has a very distinctive rhythm to it and the Darkuba is the musical instrument most often associated with it. This is the term given to a goblet drum that is used not just in Lebanon and the Arab world but also in North Africa and Eastern Europe where the Ottoman Empire held sway not too long ago. This hand held drum that is in the shape of a goblet is very ancient in origin but it has also changed with the times. While it is an essential part of Arab dance and folk music, its popularity also ensures that contemporary musicians have also adopted its use. The two main types of this drum are the Arabian (or Egyptian) and the Turkish version, both of which sound entirely different.

These goblet drums produce a wide range of sounds ranging from a deep bass sound to higher pitched sounds. These are achieved by hitting the head of the drum at different areas. This drum is very versatile and it can be used to create a range of sounds such as slaps and pops. In addition, a musician can create different sounds by hitting the side of the drum or even using a stick to hit it. Many musicians also use hand clapping in order to create a larger range of percussion sounds.

The Darkuba, especially an antique one, is a very attractive looking instrument. It was traditionally made of wood or clay with a drum head made of stretched goat or camel skin. Traditional craftsmen used to decorate these musical instruments with intricate work, making them into veritable works of art. A Darkuba decorated with exquisite mother-of pearl inlay is a Middle Eastern musician's prized possession. These days, these drums are made of a variety of materials including aluminum, copper or even fiberglass. As a result, the variety of sounds that can be created are truly immense.

It is really interesting to see the way in which musicians play on this ancient instrument. Some drummers prefer to hold it tucked under the non-dominant arm whereas others prefer to play it by placing it sideways upon their laps. This drum is traditionally played by a seated musician although it is also possible to play it while standing or dancing if a strap can be used to hang it from the player's neck. People these days look for drums that can be played while dancing.

You have to be very careful when buying this instrument because there is a huge number of varieties and styles to choose from. In fact, this makes an immense difference to the type of music that you can create from this instrument. Traditional makers of these darbukas have a lot of experience doing this and they are able to create drums that produce beautiful music. Needless to say, there is a huge difference in the costs of these drums. Make sure that you buy a Darkuba from a well-known drum maker because this will make a huge difference to the type of music you create.