What Makes a Frame Drum so Fascinating?

What Makes a Frame Drum so Fascinating?

People believe that drumming is complicated, but how can that be true when we have a drum inside us? The sound that our hearts produce is very similar to the pulse that one produces from a drum. 

The rhythm produced can vary, but you are in charge of that. People of every culture play drums to create music in different ways. And the frame drum has proven to be one of the most ancient drums to have emerged. 

You might have come across the name ‘frame drum’ for the first time since most people think most the drums are called drums. But this specific drum type is the oldest one, as proven by the many pictures. 

But do you know what makes the frame drum so fascinating? Let’s find out!

What Is a Frame Drum?

A frame drum is a drum with a huge drumhead. So the drumhead’s width is usually bigger than the drum’s depth. These frame drums are hand-held, which is a clear distinction from all other types of drums, such as tom-toms. 

Every frame drum varies, but most have some cymbals that produce a sound similar to the shaking of bells. The shell of these drums is mainly made from wood and sometimes metal, while the heads are made from fish skin or goatskin. 

How these hand drums are made plays a significant role in the sound produced. The frame drum offers varying pitch zones, the low pitch, and the high pitch. 

The low pitch is produced at the center of the drum head because the tension is the least here. At the same time, you’ll get a high pitch from the end of the drum head, as you’ll find that the tension is the most at the end of the drum. 

Sources show that the frame drum was first spotted in Turkey. But there are many variants of the frame drums worldwide that belong to various cultures. The Morrocan bendir has strings on the inside. Then there is the Iranian daf, which sometimes has chains inside. 

In Italy, they use Tamburello, which is similar to a tambourine. Then there is an Irish version called the Bodhran. And lastly, in India, they use the Kanjira

How Are Women Connected to the Frame Drum?

Looking at the frame drum’s history, it’s pretty clear that the frame drum was an instrument that women usually played. It’s said that during rituals and rites, the priestesses would play the frame drum for transformation. 

Nowadays, frame drums are played by men too, but initially, it was a women’s instrument to connect with divine feminine power. 

Why Should You Play the Frame Drum?

The frame drum is thought to be an essential and powerful instrument that could be used to produce a trance or even ecstasy within rituals. The frame drum allows a very steady rhythm to be created, and the sound comes out nice too. 

There can be multiple reasons that one would want to play the frame drum, such as:

1. It Keeps Everyone Entertained

To create an environment of serenity at a party, you can rhythmically play the drum to keep the people entertained. 

2. You Can Give Drum Classes 

If you are good at playing the frame drum, what is better than helping others in your community play the drum. Many communities remain connected to their traditions and roots through their music, and teaching others the skill of playing frame drum can keep all of you connected. 

3. You Can Use Drumming for Healing 

The frame drum was used at ceremonies and sacred rituals because of its calming and serene qualities. For people who seek help, professionals in the healing arts can help others recover from the pain they have experienced. 

4. You Can Develop a Unique Music Skill

If you are a musician and perform at concerts and events, playing the frame drum could help take your music to the next level. It could be a unique element that only you would have, and your competitors would be missing out on. 

Benefits of Playing the Frame Drum

Drumming has many benefits, and its thought to be a significant source of happiness. Here are a few benefits of playing the frame drum.

1. It’s Fun to Play 

People that start playing the drum often find it hard to quit because of how energetic and entertaining it is. 

2. Promotes Happiness 

You should also know that drumming contributes to increased endorphins, which is our body’s way of dealing with pain, so the release of endorphins makes us feel even happier. The production of endorphins can counter any negative feelings cultivated in your brain. 

3. Reduces Stress 

Because drumming will make one feel happier, the stress would automatically lessen. And just by playing the instrument, you would be distracted, and it would help you forget the stress. 

4. Keeps You Fit

Drummers are considered to be fitter and happier. Mainly because of the exertion and focus they put in while drumming. 


Our history shows the centuries-old connection to the frame drum, and isn’t this just fascinating? It’s also great to know that women initiated this tradition, and they were at such a prestigious place to get the chance to play drums. 

There are multiple benefits and reasons why you should learn and play the frame drum. So what’s stopping you from getting your first frame drum?