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Bodhran

BodhranA simple Drum with a wooden frame and a goatskin head. The frame has crossbars for rigidity which also provide a convenient way of holding the drum. It is normally played with a double headed beater but brushes (short bundle of brush wood) or fingers are used. The hand inside the frame can be moved around to alter the quality of the sound and even the pitch to some extent according to the pressure applied. The beater may be used all over the drum skin for different effects and even on the rim.

 


winkA goatskin stretched over a circular wooden frame and beaten mercilessly. It is a traditional Irish Drum.

It is a difficult Instrument to master but a deceptively simple one to play which accounts for the many Bodhrans seen at Sessions. They are limited by Session Law to one at a time if played within earshot of the musicians unless a valid nuisance licence is produced.

Good players are always welcome and enhance the music. Skilled players can even perform an enjoyable solo piece on the instrument.

Poor players tend to spend more time wetting the skin or tightening the head or selecting the right striking implement than playing, which is a blessing and in its own way, entertaining to watch.

banjolin March 11, 2008