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Darbuka/Tabla - A Middle Eastern drum. The Darbuka, from the Arabic word "darba" ("to strike"), is known as a "Tabla" to the Egyptians. It began as a drum with a hollow clay base covered in fish or animal skin. Nowadays, the Darbuka can sport a wooden base covered with attractive mother-of-pearl or made from tougher alloy. The Darbuka, played open-handed, produces a variety of tones, from a deep, deep tone - called a "dom" - created by striking close to the center, to a light treble sound - called a 'tak" produced by striking the rim. When these main doms and taks are arranged in special combinations, the resulting series of Middle Eastern rhythms can be the basis for an emotive dance balad or a climatic "drum solo".