‘Hidden Drummers of Iran’ Documentary

SKF NOTE: I came across this amazing drummer in an online news story about a Kickstarter campaign to fund a “Hidden Drummers of Iran” documentary. Ruairi Glasheen, the author of the news story, is also the “Hidden Drummers” documentarian. This one-minute Instagram video leaves me wanting to hear more from this drummer and her colleagues.

As of this writing, Mr. Glasheen has raised $2,325 toward his Kickstarter goal of $5,916.


Rhythm revolution: Young Iranians revive ancient drumming traditions
By Ruairi Glasheen, for CNN Updated 8:18 AM ET, Tue September 18, 2018

CNN)I first encountered the tonbak — Iran’s indigenous drum — as a student, when I heard it on an old LP I found in a dusty corner of the library at London’s Royal College of Music. Instantly, I was hooked.

A small, goblet-shaped drum, the tonbak…drives the fast and frenetic rhythmic intensity of Persian classical music.

The tonbak is usually made of walnut, ash or pear wood…with a thin piece of camel or goat skin.

Beyond formal drumming techniques, tonbak players have — over the instrument’s long history — devised a seemingly limitless range of deviations using different parts of the hands, fingers and nails to create entrancing solos and accompaniments. The modern generation’s top players have taken innovation a step further, incorporating elements of melody….

Today, Iran’s tonbak drumming scene is thriving.

[M]astering the tonbak is a long process that requires finding a teacher willing to take you under their wing, prayer and a lot of practice.

Full Story

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