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Walton's 8' Bodhran Bodhran Player

Goatskin Head

8" Goatskin Bodhran. Bodhran player. Handcrafted from the finest wood. comes with beater in gift pack. This size bodhran is great for children of the beginner bodhran player.

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Waltons Bodhrán Player

Bodhran Player

Handcrafted in Ireland from the finest wood. Real goatskin head. Comes in a gift pack with bodhrán beater. This 8' bodhrán is ideal for any beginner.

Condition:

NEW

IBSN: 5-390731-015332

Publisher: Waltons Manufacturng Ltd

The Bodhrán

The bodhrán (plural bodhráin) is an Irish frame drum ranging in anywhere from 8' to 26' in diameter, with most drums measuring from 14' to 18'. The sides of the drum are 3 1/2' to 8' deep. A goat skin head is tacked to one side (although nowadays, synthetic heads, or new materials like kangaroo skin, are sometimes used). The other side is open ended for the left hand to be placed against the inside of the drum head to control the pitch. One or two crossbars may be inside the frame. Some professional modern bodhráin integrate mechanical tuning systems similar to those used on drums found in drum kits.


Playing
The drum is usually played in a seated position, held vertically on the player's thigh and supported by his or her upper body and arm (usually on the left side, for a right-handed player), with the hand placed on the inside of the skin where it is able to control the tension (and therefore the pitch) by applying varying amounts of pressure and also the amount of surface area being played, with the back of the hand against the crossbar, if present. The drum is struck with the other arm (usually the right) and is played either with the bare hand or with a lathe-turned piece of wood called a 'tipper', 'beater', or 'cipín'. Brush-ended beaters are also used. There are numerous playing styles, mostly named after the region of Ireland in which they originated. The most common is Kerry style, which uses a two-headed tipper.

Another style which has gained in popularity is the so-called 'top-end' style, often played on a smaller (16 inch) and deeper (6 inch) drum with a thinner resonant skin, prepared like the skin of a Lambeg drum. The tipper in this style is usually long and straight, and most of the expressive action is focused on the top end of the drum. Crossbars are often absent, allowing a more unrestricted access for the left hand to modify the tone. This enables a more melodic approach to this rhythm instrument, with a wide range of tones being employed. An influential proponent of this style is John-Joe Kelly playing with Flook. This band is renowned for their tight arrangements and expressive playing, where a top-end bodhrán style adds significantly to the overall texture and dynamics. This approach to playing, however, doesn't always fit in with the informal setting of many Irish music sessions unless the player has a good ear for improvisation and listens to what the tune needs. A good player of any style accompanies and enhances the tune, rather than uses the tune as an opportunity to show off or go through their repertoire of techniques.

Although most common in Ireland, the bodhrán has gained popularity throughout the Celtic music world, especially in Scotland, Cape Breton, and Newfoundland. In Cornwall, traditional music sometimes uses a version of the bodhrán called a crowdy crawn.


Players
Some notable bodhrán players include: Johnny 'Ringo' McDonagh, Tommy Hayes, Fergus O'Byrne, Cormac Byrne (of Uiscedwr), John-Joe Kelly (of Flook), Kevin Conneff of The Chieftains, Paddy Mackey, Nathan MacDonald, Mel Mercier and his father Peadar Mercier, Sean McCann, Mance Grady, Lucy MacNeil, Frank Torpey, Brian Morrissey, Joseph Mulvanerty (of Black 47), Ken Larson, Jim Dawson, Caroline Corr (of The Corrs), and Lorcan Mac Muiris, who has incorporated jazz and Ghanaian styles into his technique, often playing the drum held between his knees and mutating the sound by pressing on the outer surface of the head.


Origin
The bodhrán is a frame drum similar to instruments distributed widely across northern Africa from the Middle East, and has cognates in Arab music and musical traditions of the Mediterranean region.

Some claim that its name is derived from the Irish word bodhar, meaning deaf, and that this indicates that it has been known on the island long enough to have acquired the name. However, there are no known references to the instrument prior to the 20th century, and it was observed in Irish traditional music only in the 1960s, during which it was popularised by bands such as The Chieftains and The Dubliners. Previously tambourines were used, and others have suggested this is the origin of the word (from the abbreviation 'bourine').

Peter Kennedy observed a similar instrument in Dorset and Wiltshire in the 1950s, where it was known as the 'riddle drum', and suggests that this is the likely origin of the bodhrán.

Glen Velez has combined techniques from other frame drums to the bodhrán, using Arab, South Indian, South Italian and Central Asian finger techniques. Additionally, a new flock of players abound after this exploration including N. Scott Robinson, Yousif Sheronick, Randy Craftone, Glen Fittin, and John Loose. John Bergamo has also explored cross-techniques for bodhrán with the drum seated between his legs and using fingers in methods close to Indian drumming techniques