Bhapang Music Instrument

Bhapang Music Instrument: Bhapang is a rare single stringed percussion instrument affectionately known as a 'talking drum' It originates from the Mewati community in the Alwar district. It is known as a Chongar in Maharashtra, Apang in Gujarat and Tumba in the Punjab. The Bhapang emits a unique sound due to the gut string passing through a skin parchment. It has a varying pitch which requires rapid hand movements and dexterity for the innumerable slides, oscillations and grace notes that are necessary in producing a haunting melody. It is often played to accompany Bhajans - spiritual, devotional songs - and poetry. Positioned under the armpit and plucked, it has a wonderful ability to convey emotion and depth despite its superficial simplicity.
When bhapang is played the musician grasps a wooden handle that is attached to a string. The same string is attached to the membrane. During performance the drum emits a oscillating tone that gives the instrument its particular voice. A membrane of animal skin is attached with tacks to hold the instrument together. A string is attached from handle to membrane. Five small metal bells are attached to the handle.