I play an Indian classical instrument called the tabla, some of you may have heard of it and some of you may not have but the overall point is that there are two drums and I was wondering what pitches that both should be at to sound harmonious.

The first drum is high in pitch and is currently perfectly tuned to B3. The pitch of this drum is usually between B and D.

The second drum is much lower in pitch and is currently at a pitch of F2.

I do not know much about harmonies but I would like to know what you think would be the best pitch to tune both drums at would be, bearing in mind that both are drums and cannot have dramatic changes in pitch. I would also appreciate a formula to help me understand how the harmonies would work if I say tuned the first drum to C# then how would the second drum change in pitch to stay harmonious with the first drum.

Any help will be greatly appreciated. Many thanks, D S


I've never tried to play tabla, but this seems like a good video on tuning:

In the last section he suggest tuning the low drum a perfect fifth below the high drum. Your B(natural) and F(natural) is a semitone bigger than a perfect fifth and probably won't sound good - for a long time in Western music that interval (a tritone) had the Latin name of "diabolus in musica" - the devil in music!

A perfect fifth below a C# would be an F#.

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  • You mean "a semitone smaller than a perfect fifth" for that B-F interval, right? – Dekkadeci Dec 18 '19 at 11:10

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