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An udu

The udu is an African drum originated by the Igbo people of Nigeria. In the Igbo language, udu means vessel. Actually being a water jug with an additional hole, it was played by women for ceremonial uses. Usually the udu is made of clay.

The instrument is played by hand and produces a special and unique bass sound[1] by quickly hitting the big hole. Furthermore the whole corpus can be played by fingers. Today it is widely used by percussionists in different music styles.

The instrument is both an aerophone and an idiophone.

Derived instruments

Utar is an udu with disk-like body with the hole on the top and the neck on the side. It can be played more like a conventional drum.

Kim-kim is an udu with two resonating chambers connected by a short neck. Each chamber has its own hole.

Based on the original udu Behnam Samani, a master in Persian percussion, created the Zarbang-Udu having one or two side holes and a membrane of natural skin placed beside it or in between them. This way the membrane and the holes can be played with one or two hands at the same time. This is a hand percussion instrument.

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