Show Summary Details

Page of

Printed from Grove Music Online. Grove is a registered trademark. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a single article for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy).

date: 26 January 2020

Gedumbak [gedombak]locked

  • Jack Percival Baker Dobbs,
  • Margaret J. Kartomi
  •  and Patricia Matusky



Drum of northern Malaysia, East Sumatra, and Riau islands, Indonesia. It is carved from one piece of jackfruit wood in the shape of a goblet on a hollow pedestal or foot, open at the bottom. In peninsular Malaysia the gedumbak usually appears in pairs, called ibu (‘mother’) and anak (‘child’). The mother stands about 45 cm tall, with a single head about 23 cm in diameter; the child is about 2 cm smaller in both dimensions. The head, normally of goatskin, is attached to the body by rattan laces that are sewn into the skin and extend down the body to a metal ring that encircles the top of the foot near the middle of the drum. The drum is placed across the player’s left thigh and struck with the right hand while the left hand supports the foot and can also close the open end to change the timbre. The head is struck with the entire hand and also with the fingers in certain areas to obtain specific timbres associated with various rhythmic patterns. Two large loops of rattan are sometimes affixed round the waist allowing the drum to be carried. In the Malaysian ...

You do not currently have access to this article


Please login to access the full content.


Please subscribe to access the full content.

Journal of the American Musical Instrument Society