Definition of tabla in English:



  • A pair of small hand drums attached together, used in Indian music; one is slightly larger than the other and is played using pressure from the heel of the hand to vary the pitch.

    • ‘Thus, when you mix the hypnotic qualities of dance music with the mystical range of Indian tablas, you open up the doors for interesting experimentation.’
    • ‘Even now his concerts are done only with a tabla and a harmonium.’
    • ‘By then I had been studying vocal music and the tabla for 8-9 years.’
    • ‘Their voices are modulated and trailed by a mournful accordion and occasional tablas.’
    • ‘Musically there's a lot to digest here: African flutes, Spanish guitars and the shimmer of tablas and Balkan violins.’
    • ‘Centering much of their music around tabla and sitar, these guys are obsessed with everything trippy.’
    • ‘His production incorporates a refreshing use of musicality and a wide array of East Indian arrangements, tablas and percussion.’
    • ‘They are at home with all kinds of instruments - keyboard, guitar, flute, tabla, drums.’
    • ‘He is great with musical instruments too, adept at playing the synth and the tabla.’
    • ‘An intriguing midway bridge of tabla and shimmering guitars is the song's highlight.’
    • ‘The tabla rests on the pillow, and is drummed with the fingers and palms.’
    • ‘Then the music began with family members taking turns to accompany the musicians with tablas and cymbals.’
    • ‘The most common instruments are the harmonium, the tabla, and the sitar.’
    • ‘At this time she also took lessons for the traditional Indian instruments, tablas and harmonium.’
    • ‘While he hums a song with his nose, he produces the sound of musical instruments like tabla, tango and drum through his mouth.’


From Persian and Urdu tablah, Hindi tablā, from Arabic ṭabl drum.