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date: 20 January 2020


  • Mireille Helffer
  • , revised by Gert-Matthias Wegner
  •  and Simonne Bailey


Hourglass drum of West Nepal, Kumaon, and Garhwal. The body, up to 30 cm tall and 20 cm in diameter, is of turned wood or metal. The waist is pierced by a small hole which is described as allowing the instrument to breathe. The two goatskin heads are wrapped over circular hoops and laced together in a V or Y pattern. A cord or strip of fabric around the lacing regulates the tension of the heads to change their pitch and timbre. A shoulder strap affixed to the fabric strip and bearing several small bells is placed over the left shoulder, and the left hand is slipped under the lacing to grasp the waist of the drum and pull it forwards so that the upper head can be struck by the right-hand fingers.

Huḍko players are usually members of the Huḍkya subcaste of the Damāi tailor-musicians. The drum is used in western Nepal to accompany ballads and dances; in Kumaon, it is sometimes accompanied by a little gong, and participates in ...

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