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The Tombak is a percussion instrument originating from Iran. Despite its simple construction, it provides the performer with an array of performance possibilities and complicated techniques, which sound and seem pleasant and appealing. In the 1960s and the 1970s, the instrument was introduced to other countries of the world, and today, particularly in Europe, it is loved and brilliantly played by many and can also be heard in the works of non-Iranian musicians.
The present book is the interactive version of the first, and the best-selling, Tombak coursebook, which was compiled by a group of the greatest contemporary Iranian musicians nearly 40 years ago. One of the reasons the book has been so well-received is the presence and collaboration of Hoseyn Tehrani (1912-1974), the renowned musician and Tombak player, in the process of composing the drills part of it. He is considered the most outstanding master and the initiator of a new period in the history of Tombak playing in Iran.
There are some points worth mentioning regarding this interactive book:
In compiling this new electronic edition, the aims of the original developers of the pedagogical method of the book and the techniques of Hoseyn Tehrâni in playing the Tombak have been taken into account. The writer has also tried to employ his own ideas, expression and conception, which are the result of 20 years of practical experience and research in the field of Persian music in general and teaching this very book in particular.
Some points should be stressed in order for the dear reader to make the best use of the book:
‧ New exercises have been added to the main exercise of almost all drills in the book, and this is done for several reasons:
‧ Some techniques, such as " Eshâre" , require more practice to be fully grasped, and the additional exercises can provide the learners with the opportunity to practice and master such techniques.
‧ Some hand or finger movements, in performing the " Riz " technique, for instance, need to be learnt through simpler drills or heavier or more basic tempo exercises. In such cases, the additional exercises can prepare the learners for the initially planned ones.
‧ As the learners improve their performance techniques, sometimes, they may be able to perform the drills with more technique, faster tempo and greater details, and the additional exercises help them do so.
‧ In the Definitions part, some techniques, such as " Riz-e Pelang " and " Riz-e Nâkhoni " on the wood, were introduced to which no drills were assigned. Through the additional exercises, the writer has tried to employ these techniques as well.
‧ Some complicated techniques, such as " Riz-e Kuchak ", which is a significant technique found in Hoseyn Tehrâni’s performances, seemed to be briefly mentioned in the original version. Therefore, in the additional exercises, such techniques are employed to be practiced.
‧ The writer has tried to incorporate the material including his personal interpretations, ideas and taste into the additional exercises in order to be faithful to the original text.
‧ There are extra movements and techniques, such as " Pishriz-e Shast " and " Nimtom " which are presented as additional exercises.
‧ With regard to the movements, in addition to the descriptions in the original text, the writer has given some tips, on the common mistakes, for example, which will hopefully help the learners to gain a better understanding of the subject. These tips are presented in the form of graphic widgets apart from the main text.
‧ The simpler additional exercises precede the main drills, whereas the more complicated ones or the ones consisting of extra techniques follow them. It is recommended that if at first glance an exercise seems difficult, the learners start with the prerequisite exercises, and if it seems easy, the more complicated ones be focused on.
‧ Based on experience, a certain number of exercises are considered enough material for a single instructional session, and accordingly, some divisions have been made in the drills part of the book. Therefore, the learners may find it more effective to move to a new part only after they have practiced sufficiently and are proficient enough in performing all the exercises in a part.
It is hoped that this book will help you enjoy learning and playing the Tombak more than ever.