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Mridangams for Authentic South Indian Sounds

If you want to bring the sounds of South India into your very own home, an authentic mridangam from one of the southern Indian states can fill your home with those sounds. This surprisingly musical drum is a unique instrument in a number of ways, and there's no better place to purchase one of these instruments than on eBay. To learn more about how to make music with these instruments and pick your own mridangam, check out these questions and answers.

What are the unique characteristics of mridangams?

The most notable unique characteristic of the mridangam is that it is a two-sided percussion instrument. Most types of drums have hide on one end and an opening on the other end to allow the sound out, but mridangams have hide on both ends. Instead of placing this type of large drum between their knees, mridangam players sit cross legged on the ground, place this type of drum across their laps, and play by hitting both sides of the drum alternately.

What are these instruments made from?

These instruments are made from a variety of different components:

  • Wood - The bodies or mridangams are usually made from wood. The type of wood that is used to construct this type of drum varies, but it is always carved into a distinctive shape that bulges outward in the middle.
  • Metal - Some makers of these instruments do away with convention and make the bodies of their mridangams from various types of metal. The types of metal that are used include steel and brass, but the sound will be different so be sure it's the kind you want.
  • Hide - Both ends of these types of instruments are covered with hide. The type of hide that is used varies, but it has been specially treated to ensure its utility for percussion purposes, and it has been stretched thoroughly to cover each end of its instrument.
  • Rope - The hide ends of these types of percussion instruments are held on by rope. This rope is usually relatively thick, and it serves the dual purpose of providing a place where the player can easily grasp the body of the drum.
Do these instruments come with any accessories?

Here are some examples of the types of accessories that are offered for these instruments.

  • Cases - You can purchase a bag to keep your instrument safe from damage. These bags have zippers along the sides, and they also usually have handles to make it easy to carry your instrument.
  • Covers - To protect the hide ends of your instrument from damage, you can cover them with special covers. These covers are usually made from fabric, and they are often embroidered with intricate designs.
  • Tuning sticks - If you're trying to produce a certain tone with your instrument, you can use one of these accessories.
How do you select the right mridangam?

As you select the instrument that's right for you, you'll need to choose between materials such as wood and brass. Also, these instruments vary in size, so you'll want to pick an option that will fit in your lap perfectly. Lastly, you'll need to decide if you want to invest in any accessories such as a carrying case or a tuner.

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