Azerbaijan International

Winter 2001 (9.4)
Page 13

Reader's Forum
Gavals, Anyone?

StampI'm interested in knowing if anyone in the U.S. imports gavals? I have a video of Glen Valez, a well-known American drummer, who plays a frame drum called gaval. He performs a unique finger style on it that sounds incredible.

As you may know, there has been a large interest in hand-drumming these past few years. It's a field that has grown greatly, and there's a great deal of information on the Web. I'm a drummer, but I had never heard of the gaval prior to this. I can't find a single mention of it at any of the retail drum sites. It was on your web site -, that I discovered that it is played in Azerbaijan. My ancestry is Irish, so I have a Celtic bodhran, another type of frame drum, played with a stick.

Valez' gaval is made of fish skin, which I understand is becoming rare but greatly effects the sound. I'm wondering if the fish by any chance, is sturgeon? Clearly it is the knowledge accumulated through generations about the subtleties of constructing these drums that really makes them sing. I hope this art has not been lost.

Mark Kielty
Taos (New Mexico)

Azerbaijan International (9.4) Winter 2001.
© Azerbaijan International 2002. All rights reserved.

Back to Index AI 9.4 (Winter 2001)
AI Home
| Magazine Choice | Topics | AI Store | Contact us

Other Web sites created by Azerbaijan International
| |