Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Mridangam South Indian's Drum Beat

Mridangam is one of the classical south indian instrument,It prescribes our culture during marriages and other most cultural functions.South indian drumming has a language all of its own.FOr every sound produced by mridangam there is a corresponding syllable .These syllables known as solkattu ,are combined to form inumerable rhythms.The present day mridangam is made up of single block of wood either jackwood  or redwood.It is shaped like a barrel and both side used for drumming .The two heads are made up of layers of skin stretched by leather straps.The term mridangam word is derived from the sanskrit word "Mrid Ang" which literally means " clay body" indicating that it was orginally made of clay.

The right head is made up of three concentric layers of skin.the outering layer called meetu thol is made up of sheep skin  and the inner ring called the chapu thol is made of calf hide.At the center of the right head is permanent spot of black paste called soru.It is a mixture of boiled rice,manganese and iron fillings.The black spot is the special tone for mridangam allowing emisson of harmonics.

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