Ek Tara – Stringed Instrument

 Single String Musical Instrument – Folk Music

The Ek Tara is a single string musical instrument. “Ek” means one and “Tara” means String.

Popularity of the Ektara

The Ektara is a very simplistic folk music instrument, most popularly used by Baul Singers in West Bengal. In addition, the Ek tara is also used in countries such as Bangladesh and Egypt, etc.

Other common names of the Ektara are Ektar, Iktar or Gopiyantra.

Look & Feel

There are three main components which make up this simple instrument. These include the spherical head or resonator which may be made of wood, coconut or gourd, a single stretched long string, and its long neck which is made by attaching a split bamboo cane.

The Ektara is played by plucking its solitary string with one finger. There are no frets on this instrument and the tone or pitch may be adjusted by pressing the two halves of the neck together.

The Baul community of singers have made the EkTara synonymous with Baul folk music. It has a very distinctive sound and this form of folk music is easily recognizable.

Different Types of Ek Tara

The different varieties of Ek tara depending on their size includes –

  •     Bass Ek Tara (also called Do Tara)
  •     Tenor Ek Tara
  •     Soprano Ek Tara

Ek Tara Performance

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