Tabla is an Indian percussion with an Arabic origin. Tabla is used extensively in Indian music in different styles and roles. Tabla can be an accompanying instrument whereas in the form Qaida tabla becomes the solo instrument. Although a tabla consists of two drums (dayan, the small high pitched drum and bayan the big bass drum) it has a huge range of timbres and is a highly expressive instrument. (here’s an out-of-the-world performance!) One of the techniques involves squeezing the membrane of bayan to form modulated strokes. This technique is very crucial in tabla listening and add great variety to the performance.
One of my active projects is “modeling the bayan strokes mathematically for different modulation techniques and synthesize them for real-time computer-generated tabla improvisation.” (more…)