Eastern Expressions

The Darbuka

Eastern Expressions

The goblet drum (also chalice drum) is a goblet shaped hand drum used mostly in music originating in countries near the Middle East. It is known as the doumbek in Arabic and the toumberleki in Greek. Its thin, responsive drumhead and resonance help it produce a distinctively crisp sound. Though it is not known exactly when these drums were first made, they are known to be of ancient origin.
There are two main types of goblet drums. The Egyptian style has rounded edges around the head, whereas the Turkish style exposes the edge of the head. The exposed edge allows closer access to the head so finger-snapping techniques can be done, but the hard edge discourages the rapid rolls possible with the Egyptian style.

Traditionally, goblet drums may be made of clay, metal, or wood. Modern goblet drums are also sometimes made of synthetic materials, including fiberglass. Modern metal drums are commonly made of aluminum (either cast, spun, or formed from a sheet) or copper. Some aluminum drums may have a mother-of-pearl inlay, which is purely decorative. Traditional drum heads were animal skin, commonly goat. Modern drums commonly use synthetic materials for drum heads, including mylar and fiberglass.

Eastern Expressions, darbuka