Chanda

Name: Chanda.
Type: Membranophones > Drums > Barrel.
Hornbostel Sachs No#: 211.22
Country: Kerala, Karnataka & Tamil Nadu, India.
Region: South Asia.

Description: The Chanda or chande [in Malayalam: ചെണ്ട, [tʃeɳʈa] is a barrel drum used widely in the state of Kerala, Tulu Nadu of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu in India. In Tulu Nadu Coastal Karnataka it is known as chande.

Construction: Chenda has two sides, the left side called [in Malayalam: “Edamthala” ഇടം തല Left Head] and the right head [in Malayalam: വലം തല Valamthala]. The “Edamthala” is made of only one/two layer of cow skin and the “Valamthala” will have a five / seven layer skin, so as to have a bass sound.

The skin are dried under shadow and fastened on wooden rings [In Malayalam: ചെണ്ട വട്ടം Chenda Vattam, ചെണ്ട വട്ടം] made of the trunk of a locally available palm tree [Eeranpana] or bamboo, using a gum prepared from the seed of a tree called “pananchi maram”.

The skin are dried under shadow and fastened on wooden rings [In Malayalam: ചെണ്ട വട്ടം Chenda Vattam, ചെണ്ട വട്ടം] made of the trunk of a locally available palm tree [Eeranpana] or bamboo, using a gum prepared from the seed of a tree called “pananchi maram”.The circular frame is kept in a vessel, boiled for an entire day and then bent in the form of circle and dried up. The body of the Chenda which is 1 ft in diameter and 3.81 cm 1.5 inches thickness is made of the soft wood of the jackfruit tree [in Malayalam: വരിക്ക പ്ലാവ് Varikka Plavu].

The thickness is again reduced by 0.63 cm or 0.25 inches, at simultaneous points separated by 10.16 cm or 4 inches. This is done in order to produce highly resonating sound. Only the wooden rings with the skin [Chenda Vattam] is replaced once the quality of the sound is not up to the mark. For regular Chenda artists an average of 15 rings are required every year.

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