Tabla (Drum) Solo
The tabla solo is the improvisational highlight of the tabla player and the dancer. The dancer interprets the dums and teks of the tabla (aka derbeki), shows off her technical skills and her shimmies. The Egyptian, Lebanese, Turkish and American approaches are each unique, but all impressive in their own way. When working with a recording it is important to memorize all the nuances of the piece so each can be related with style. A good drum solo builds to a climax and has a nice variety of rhythms and pace. If the dancer is working with a live drummer, she will have to pay very close attention to the drummer, and the drummer should pay attention to her, that means getting a little closer in proximity and within each other’s lines of sight. If a good rapport is established it can add energy to the performance. Ideally, the drummer will repeat his drum licks in sets of four. However not all drummers are that reliable, so having a sense of humor and a willingness to just go for it are great traits to have. The drum solo is usually the climax of a performance set, often the last piece before the finale.
Shems’s Drum Solos YouTube Playlist