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date: 15 November 2019

Tabshi [taushi, zambuna]locked

  • K.A. Gourlay

Extract

[taushi, zambuna]

Small snared kettledrum used by the Hausa and other peoples of northern and central Nigeria. The wooden body is 27 cm tall and 22 cm in diameter. It has a goatskin or duiker-skin head with a patch of tuning-paste. The head is lapped to a leather-bound rope ring and V-laced, with leather thongs and a horizontal tuning brace, to an iron ring at the base of the body. A hole in the side of the body is used to pour in a libation of oil and spices. In Hausa music the tabshi is one of the main instruments used by classical praise singers to accompany songs praising emirs or their senior officials, and its use spread to other peoples. For example, the drum was introduced in the 19th century into the Bauchi region, where in the 1970s it was one of the instruments accompanying praise singers of the Chief of Dass, and among the Nupe people at Bida it became part of the court music....

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