Tabla for Hire
The Tabla is the plural name for the instantly recognisable pair of Indian hand drums, the bhaya and tabla. The shell of the lower drum (bhaya) is made of metal and the higher drum (tabla) of wood. Each of the drums have hoops attached to the head and each of these hoops are strung with leather strings. Small wooden dowels are slid up and down the leather to provide the tension on the head. The smaller of the drums has a head size of 5" whilst the larger is closer to 9". Each of the heads have a black patch glued to the head which is vital to the distinct sound of the instrument. On the smaller of the drums the patch is in the centre and on the larger slightly off-centre. Both drums are supported with material rings as they are not normally played horizontally. The technique for playing tablas is extremely specialist and a standard orchestral percussionist would have a hard time playing this instrument correctly without training.