North-Eastern India’s musical instruments are an important element of the country’s cultural history.
North-Eastern India is home to a wide range of musical instruments, including wind instruments, string instruments, and percussion instruments.
Wind instrument: A wind instrument is a musical instrument with a resonator (typically a tube) in which the player blows into (or over) a mouthpiece situated at or near the end of the resonator to cause a column of air to vibrate. The length of the tube and manual adjustments to the effective length of the vibrating column of air define the vibration pitch.
Blowing through a reed produces sound on some wind instruments; buzzing into a metal mouthpiece produces sound on others, and blowing into a hole at an edge separates the air column and produces sound on yet others.
String instrument: String instruments, often known as stringed instruments or chordophones, are musical instruments with vibrating strings that make a sound when a person plays or sounds them in some way.
Musicians pluck the strings with their fingers or a plectrum on some string instruments, and beat the strings with a light wooden hammer or rub the strings with a bow on others. The musician hits a key that plucks the string on various keyboard instruments, such as the harpsichord. Sound is produced by striking the string on other musical instruments.
Percussion instrument: A percussion instrument is a musical instrument with connected or enclosed beaters or rattles that are pounded, scraped, or rubbed by hand or struck against another similar instrument to produce sound. The percussion family is said to include the oldest musical instruments, excluding zoomusicological instruments and the human voice.
Drums, tabla, flutes, mouth organs, clarinets, harmoniums, guitars, trumpets, fiddles, Jews-harps, leaf instruments, and other unique and distinctive musical instruments are examples of the people of the North East’s musical talents.
Singing and dancing are performed using these indigenous instruments. A detailed examination of these devices exposes another facet of people’s relationship with nature. Nature inspires them and provides them with the materials they need to make these instruments. The majority of their instruments are self-made and designed.
Musical Instruments of 5 Regional states
Musical Instruments of Assam-
Assamese Dhol is a well-known instrument. It’s a barrel-shaped drum with two heads. It is played with two wooden sticks made of cane wood or bamboo, which vary in size depending on the locality.
Gogona is a reed instrument that is commonly used in conjunction with Bihu. It is made out of a bifurcated piece of wood or horn on one end.
Pepa, a cane or bamboo instrument with a horn at one end, is another instrument from this region.
Taal is combined with Assamese traditional music to produce a high-pitched sound.
Khol is an Assamese percussion instrument. It’s a terracotta drum with two sides.
Moreover, other musical instruments from this state include Toka, Xutuli, Madol, Baanhi, Nagera, Ektara, Zuri tala etc.
Musical Instruments of Meghalaya-
Musical instruments are an important part of Meghalayan art and culture. Dama is a popular wood-based percussion instrument. It is a long, narrow drum that produces forceful rhythms.
Kram is a similar instrument to Dama, although it is slightly larger. The instrument is only played on exceptional occasions, according to tribal beliefs.
Nagra is another instrument. It is usually played to gather people at Nokma’s residence for a feast or entertainment.
Flutes are also used in Meghalayan traditional music.
The Gongmina, also known as the Jew’s harp, is a bamboo slit instrument.
The regional people of Meghalaya use cymbals to perform a game that involves beating a pair of cymbals against each other. These are divided into two categories: Kakwa and Nenggilsi.
Musical Instruments of Nagaland-
In Nagaland, a variety of musical instruments have evolved to accompany and enhance the beauty of the state’s traditional music.
Tati, Theku, Asem, Jemji, trumpets, cup violins, bamboo flutes, and other Naga instruments are among them.
Musical Instruments of Mizoram-
Mizoram has also seen the emergence of a number of musical instruments. Khuang is a mandatory instrument for all of the state’s regional occasions. It’s a percussion instrument, after all.
Tawtawrawt is a bamboo trumpet, while Phenglawng is a flute that generates a wide range of tunes.
Another sort of wind instrument is the hnahtum, which is built of leaves and can make a variety of sounds.
Tuium dar is a bamboo-stringed instrument. It contains three strings that can be used to make melodies.
The mizo guitar is another name for Tingtang. It’s also made of bamboo and official positions at gourd.
Musical Instruments of Tripura-
Music is an important element of Tripura’s culture, and a number of instruments developed there.
Sumui is a well-known instrument among the state’s ancient instruments. It’s constructed of bamboo and emits lovely tunes.
Sarinda is a string instrument that is mostly utilised by tribal people.
Another popular tribal instrument is the chongpreng. It is a kind of chordophone lute composed of bamboo.
Dangdoo is a percussion and wind instrument hybrid.
Kham is a double membrane drum that is often employed in the state’s regional music. Kham is played by tying it to the waist and suspending it around the neck. Strings or the hand are used to play these.
Tripura’s Lebang-Lebangti is one of its most distinctive and special instruments.
The uakhrap is a traditional instrument as well. Its origins can be traced back to antiquity. Bamboo sticks are used to create rhythmic tones in this instrument.
North-Eastern Indian musical instruments are popular among tribal and modern performers alike. These instruments have played an important role in the spellbinding North East Indian renditions. Over time, a number of well-known artists with expertise in various instruments have risen to prominence across the country.