Where Does the Darbuka Come From?



The Darbuka has been around for millennia. Some have estimated that its origins date back to as far as the Babylonian period. This estimate is likely because hand drums have been an integral part of many cultures and societies, likely since early human history. The Darbuka, a goblet-shaped hand drum, has manifested itself in its current form in the Middle East, North Africa, South-East Asia and Turkey. Other instruments such as the African Djembe, Iranian Tombak, and various other West African drums are likely to be different manifestations of the same original Babylonian drums.


A Djembe

In present times the Darbuka is deeply embedded into Middle Eastern and North African heritage. It is used in countries like Algeria and Syria as a core part of any wedding or celebration. Consequently, most children (male and female) grow up with some education on how to play the Darbuka. It's no surprise then that some of the greatest Darbuka masters alive today hail from such countries.

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