Telephone numbers and e-mail address Back to Contact information

Numan Elyer

Numan Elyer is a Turkish percussionist who is starting to make a reputation for himself in the UK. He began playing the darbuka some 15 years ago and in recent years he has vastly increased his repertoire.

The darbuka, an hourglass shaped drum with a single head, is best known in the Middle East and Eastern Europe, but its influence is spreading fast. The flexibility of this instrument, in that it can be played in many ways, means that it can blend with lots of different musical styles. The traditional method of playing the darbuka, whilst effective is somewhat simplistic although this still has a place in traditional music. The new 'all-finger' style, as popularised by Numan, is fast gaining in prominence. This new style is much influenced by classical Indian percussion such as the tabla and gatam. The all finger style translates exceptionally well to the darbuka and has much increased its range and uses.

In the West, percussion is generally perceived as just part of the rhythm section, whereas in the Middle East a skilled darbuka player is considered a virtuoso in their own right.

Numan started his career playing traditional Turkish music in various folk groups around the South West of the country. He subsequently moved to Istanbul where he studied under the county's leading darbuka players. Since then, he has developed his own individual style, which has evolved further following his move to the UK a few years ago.

Now settled in the London area, he has played with several bands including, Mukka, Abdelkader Saadoun and various classical Indian groups. He also plays regularly for some of Britain's best-known belly dancers and runs darbuka workshops. In addition to the darbuka, Numan plays davul, gatam, djembe, bongos and frame drum. This range, ability and ear for all rhythms enables Numan to play many musical styles, not only those from the Middle East. So far his playing has encompassed jazz, Latin and Indian, as well as broad based Western European styles.

Numan can be contacted as follows:

[email protected]

or tel : 07960 047876