Iran (IP)- The Tonbak is of the major drum instruments of Persian music. It is played with the hands and positioned diagonally across the player's torso.

Iran PressIran news: The Tradition of Persian classical music is still vividly alive in Iran, from highly respected masters to folk music played by rural people. It is one of the most important aspects of Persian culture, whose many forms can be experienced in all the cities and villages of Iran.

Iranian traditional music is deeply rooted in its rich history


Iran possesses hundreds of traditional instruments, mostly string and percussion instruments. Most of them spread to the whole region under the Persian Empires, up to Europe and Asia thanks to the Silk Road merchants. Tombak is among the most iconic Iranian traditional music instruments. 


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Traditional Persian music is based on a series of modal scales and tunes. The repertoire, which has been fully developed in the 19th century, is called "Radif": it is based on seven modes called "Dastagh", with many sub-modes, and five derivated modes called "Avaz". These modes contain more than 200 short melodic motions, called "Gushe", which are succeeding to each other in a specific order.


This traditional and unique repertoire, the "Radif of Iranian music", has been listed by UNESCO, in 2009, as an element of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.


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Tombak Instrument

The tombak, tonbak, or zarb is an Iranian goblet drum. It is considered the principal percussion instrument of Persian music. The tombak is normally positioned diagonally across the torso while the player uses one or more fingers or the palm of the hand on the drumhead, often (for a ringing timbre) near the drumhead's edge. Sometimes, tombak players wear metal finger rings for an extra-percussive "click" on the drum's shell. Tombak virtuosi often perform solos lasting ten minutes or more.


The rhythm of Persian traditional music is set by Persian drums. Tombak (or tonbak) is one of these drums and our catalog includes a wide range of tombak. Tombak is a percussion instrument under the membranophone family. It is also known as “Zarb” which means beat. It is a goblet-shaped, wooden drum with a richer sound compared to the frame drums. They are mostly used in folk and entertainment music. The drum is made from a single block of walnut, ash, or mulberry wood. The skin stretched on the top may be goatskin, camel skin, or calfskin.


All tombaks we sell are hand-made and constructed by well-known makers who have mastered their craft from the older generations. Besides their quality, the ornaments on our tombaks are also attractive and reflect Persian culture. 


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