Turkish Music Instruments

Koltuk davulu (Nagara)


nagara koltukdavulu

 The nagara (also called koltuk davulu) is a Turkish folk drum or percussion instrument. It is placed under the arm and beaten with the hands. It is longer compared to the regular drums and its diameter is smaller. This is the same as the Azerbaijani naghara. There is a proverb in the Azerbaijani language that says "toy-dan-sora-naghara!" This literally means after the wedding ceremonies naghara! This instrument helped the doctors to deal with bad mood, melancholy, intellectualphysical exhaustion, as well as low blood pressure. It was considered that the Naghara could substitute for some medicinal plants and tones like spicy cloves. The rhythmic beating of the naghara is believed to lead to the strengthening of the heart. The naghara is described in the Early Middle Age Azerbaijani literary epic, "Kitabi Dada Gorgud" (Book of Dede Korkut) (The Book of my Grandfather). Instruments resembling the Naghara were also well known in ancient Egypt.

Thus, according to the rich scientific and musical heritage of our ancestors, it seems that not only did they listen to music for enjoyment and entertainment, but they perceived music a potent force in the prevention and treatment of various diseases. and  


Tkoltuk davulu nagarahe doli is a widespread percussion instrument all over Georgia. It represents a small Doliwooden cylinder, both sides of which are covered with leather . The leather is tightly attached to the body and has iron rings , which are used for straining the leather on the surface. It is played by palms and fingers. When playing doli is held under the left arm or hung over the arm. Doli player plays the instrument in a sitting position or dances during performance. To get the effect of Forte it is played in the center. But to get Piano effect, at the edges of Doli. Doli’s body is made of wood; they give the form of cylinder to it and stretch the leather on it. The Doli’s height and diameter of sound producing surface are about 3 to 1. Men mostly play Doli. While dancing doli creates the rhythm of a dance. Doli is often combined with Chonguri, Chiboni, Salamuri, Buzika and Duduki.

           Tayyar Akdeniz



Davul (Hanging drum)

davul_tay.jpg  davul.jpg

    Turkish Davul                                   Tayyar Akdeniz   

The davul (or screw davul) is one of the very oldest instruments, having been used down the ages by the various civilisations of Anatolia, and later by communities in Central Asia. Despite some changes in form and construction technique, the percussion instrument that has come down to the present day ıs actually one of the least altered traditional Turkish musical instruments. It is one of the fundamental elements of traditional Turkish music, and has been used for a variety of purposes. These include communications by means of local or mehter music, making announcements and issuing warnings. The davul is traditionally associated together with the zurna, although in many places it has also been used on its own, not unlike the meydan sazı. The davul has gone by a number of names down the years, including; tug, tavul, kuvrug, tuvil and tabl. Davul players have been called "tablzen", "davulzen" and "davulcu". The davul was the principle instrument used by shamans, and was and still is used in Turkey at weddings, to wake people so they can eat something before fasting all day, traditional sports and games, horse racing, wrestling matches and festivals. It has also been used to spread tidings of good news, security matters, war and fire. In essence, davuls can be classed into three different sizes. These are the small (diameter approx. 60 cm.), medium (diameter 70 cm.) and large (80-90 cm.). The width of the rim changes considerably from region to region and depending on the player. It consists of two main parts, the skin of leather which has been passed over a stretching hoop, and the wooden section joined to it, known as the "kasnak" (rim). The two kins that have been stretched over the hoop can be tightened as wished to produce the desired tone by means of the attachments on the side. The frame may be made of walnut, lime or fir, although oak is probably the most popular of all. Over it is stretched calf, dog, sheep or goat skin, attached to the top and bottom of the frame. They are put on wet, and tied down at the top and bottom with zig-zag cords. The skin is kept fully stretched once it has dried out in order to maintain the desired pitch. It is also oiled with sesame or olive oil to prevent it cracking as it dries out.

After being hung round the neck by a stout cord, the davul is played by hitting it with a thick stick called the "tokmak" (or comak, meccik, metcik or comaka) held in the right hand, and a thinner one known as the "thin stick" or ‘cubuk (or cirpi or zipzibi) held in the left. The tokmak beats the main stresses of the rhythm, and the cubuk the lighter ones. The cubuk is usually about 40-50 cm. long, and the tokmak

Davul Class At The CampDavul Show At The Camp

Tayyar Akdeniz is teaching davul in Folk Tours  dance&music camp

 Teaching To play DavulTurkish Davul drum clss

 Tayyar Akdeniz is teaching davul to Baran Efendioglu was 4 years old 



 darbuka Tayyar Akdeniz

                                               Tayyar Akdeniz


The goblet drum is a goblet shaped hand drum used in Arabic music, Persian music, Balkan music, Armenian music, Azeri music, Jewish music and Turkish music. Its thin, responsive drumhead and resonance help it produce a distinctively crisp sound. It is of ancient origin, and is believed by some to have been invented before the chair.

The instrument is known by different names in different regions. These names all refer to a goblet-shaped drum; however, the construction and playing methods of each are so varied as to make many of them different instruments altogether. Nowhere outside the United States is the drum called Dumbek or Doumbeck, regardless how similar the name might seem. Darbakeh/Tarabuka (General), Doumbek/Doumbeg (Armenian), Dumbul/Dunbul (Azeri), Tarambuke (Balkan),  Tombak/Tonbak (Iranian)

 African drums such as the Djembe are related in origin through the African connection, but are rarely included in discussions of the goblet drum.


The great goblet drum has a single drum head on one end and is open on the other end. The body may be made of beaten, cast, or spun metal, ceramic (often with a glued-on head) or wood. Materials for the head include synthetics such as PET film or FiberSkyn, as well as more traditional animal skins, such as goat or fish. In general, goblet drums tend to have much lighter heads than African or Indian drums.

While ceramic bodies with skin heads are usually considered to have the best tone, metal bodies and Mylar heads are generally favored by professional musicians because of their practicality, since they are far more durable, easily tunable, and insensitive to weather conditions. Furthermore, drums with Mylar skins can be played very loudly, making them well-matched with modern brass and electric instruments.

The West African djembe, a related instrument, is larger and made from a log carved into a goblet shape.

Dabka Class At the Camp

Seido Salifoski is teaching Turkish stayle darbuka in folk tours dance & music camp

Name for some are Turkish classical rhythms used

2 time "Signature" or "usul": "Nim Sofyan"

3 time “Signature" or "usul": "Semai"

4 time “Signature" or "usul":   "Sofyan"

5 time "Signature" or "usul": "Turk Aksagi"  

6 time "Signature" or "usul" "Yoruk Semai"

7 time "Signature" or "usul" "Devr-i Turan" and "Devr-i Hindi"

8 time "Signature" or "usul" "Duyek" and "Musemmen"

9 time "Signature" or "usul" Aksak", Evfer" and "Raks Aksagi"

10 time "Signature" or "usul" "Aksak Semai" and "Oynak"



Sipsi (sile a boatswain’s pipe)


The Sipsi (sile a boatswain’s pipe) is a wind instrument made out of bone, wood or reed. The reed version is most common.

A small reed at the end of the instrument produces the sound. This is taken into the mouth and air blown over it.

The sipsi is most commonly found in the Aegean region of Turkey. It has six holes, five on top and one on the bottom.





Tulum (bagpipe) is one of the wind instrument group, it consists of three parts; the skin, "nav" and mouthpiece. Air is stored in the skin, and when this is squeezed the air is sent on to the nav, which is itself divided into two parts, the "analik" (main part) and "dillik" (tongue part). The mouthpiece is used to send the air into the skin.

The tulum is used in Trabzon, Rize, Erzurum and Kars, and in the northern and central regions of Anatolia, as well as in the Thracian region, where the tulum made from lamb and goat skin is called "gayda".




Mey is an old Turkish musical wind instrument. It is mainly practiced in the Eastern part of the country. Evliya Çelebi mentions the Asian name of Mey as follows: "Belbam or Balaban was first discovered in Shiraz. It does not have a "Kalak" like in Zurna. It is widely used by the Turks "100 people played it". That is to say that these instruments were practiced in Istanbul in the 17th century. Türkmens beyond the Caspian Sea use "Mey" even today with the same original name. (V. Belaier 1937: Fitret page:48) Lower point of the "Mey" body is not as large as in Zurna. It comes down straight as in Kaval (pipe). "Mey" is composed of three parts: 1.Body / 2.Reed / 3.Reed claws which help sounds to be produced accurately. In Turkish: (Ana Gövde/Kamis/Kiskaç )

The best meys are those which are made of plum-trees. They also vary in size; the body lengths are 40 cm in Ana Mey, 35 cm. in Orta Mey and 30 cm. in Cura Mey. It has one octavo sound range. These exist 8 sound holes, 7 on the top of the body and 1 at the bottom. 9-10 hole mey is still practiced in Azerbaijan and Türkistan under the name of "Balaban" 

Page 2 of 4

Facebook: tayyarfolkdancer Facebook Group: 6667428643 LastFM Artist: tayyar akdeniz Linked In Group: tayyar-akdeniz Meet Up: folktours MySpace: folktours Picasa: tayyarfolktour Twitter: tayyarfolktours Vimeo: folktours YouTube: folktours

0 users and 122 guests online


You are here: TURKISH DANCE Turkish Music Instruments