The SwarShala Indian music software includes Dholak and over 80 other perfectly sampled virtual Indian instruments.
The Dholak is an iconic drum widely used in North Indian traditional music. It is mainly made of wood and leather. Each of its skins is stretched around a rattan ring, and the Dholak is carved from a woodblock. Ropes connect the two rings. The strings are strung in a row and pass through a metal ring that allows the drummer to alter head tension by sliding up and down the length of the casing.
Unlike the Tabla or Pakhawaj, the masala paste is put inside the low-pitch skin of this drum. The inside of the head is fastened with flour tuning paste, which is sounded by the performer's left hand, lowering its pitch in comparison to the other head.
Dholak is native to India, but it was then introduced to areas like Guyana, South Africa, Fiji, and other British Empire territories in the 19th and early 20th centuries by the Indian travellers. It is still used by their descendants today.
The drummer is usually sat on the ground or the floor with the drum horizontally in front of him or on his lap, generally slanted slightly to raise the right-hand head higher than the left-hand one. To play music with Dholak, swipe your right finger up or near the rim of the higher-pitched head, then tap and slap with your left hand towards the resonant center of the lower-pitched head. You must also apply varying degrees of pressure on the head with the heel of your palm, resulting in subtle pitch inflections. To use Dholak’s technique expertly, it takes a lot of practice. However, mastering this instrument is not insurmountably tough.
Dholak drums were played during special festivals and musical occasions throughout the Mughal dynasty (1526-1857 CE) and were widely used drums in houses. It is currently considered an icon of Indian folk music.
Try the free SwarShala demo that includes Dholak along with various other Indian instruments by clicking on the "Try a Demo" button below.
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