July 24, 2024
punjabi musical instruments

Top 14 Folk Punjabi Musical Instruments You Should Know!

Folk Music is a composition of songs by not the professionals but by the ordinary people. It is composed by making use of folk musical instruments. It is basically the traditional form of singing. It is played all over India, like in Rajasthan, Punjab and many others.

When we talk about the Punjabi Folk Music, there are a number of Folk Musical Instruments used while performing the folk dance of Punjab. The youth today is unaware of the usage of some Punjabi Instrument. While some musical instruments are rare to find and use.

Let’s make the youth aware about such precious Folk Instruments of Punjab.

List of Punjabi Folk Musical Instruments

  1. Algoze

Algoza Instrument is a woodwind Punjabi Instrument that can be seen in pairs. The instrument is used in Baloch, Sindhi, Punjab and Saraiki. One of the folk musical instruments also used in Rajasthan and Kutchi. It is a two beaked instrument, out of which one beak generates melodious sound while the other generates a droned sound. The beaked flutes are either tied to each other or can be held loosely held into hands. The music generated from this Punjabi folk musical instrument is very soothing to hear and anyone can fall in love with the voice.

  1. Bugchu

The Bugchu Punjabi Instrument is another folk musical instrument that is mostly used in Punjab. This Punjabi folk instrument is mainly used in the performances of Punjabi folk Dance like Malwai Giddha, Bhangra. It is an hourglass-shaped gourd and on its skin, some strings are stretched. The instrument is played by keeping it in the crook of the arm and strings are pulled to generate a beautiful and croaky voice. The sound obtained from the bugchu instrument seems to be very traditional.  

  1. Chimta

Chimta is another Punjabi Folk Musical Instrument which is majorly used in the Punjabi folk Dance like Bhangra, giddha. The chimta instrument is also used in Gurbani Kirtans in Gurudwaras. It is in a tongs shape, and it is striked against each other to produce a chiming sound. This musical instrument is made up of steel or iron and the jingles are made up of metals and they create a metallic sound. It is held between the fingers and striked against each other. 

  1. Dilruba

The Dilruba Instrument which is a bow shaped instrument originally found in India. This Punjabi Musical Instrument has a lot of importance in the Sikh History. The instrument was created by the tenth guru of the sikhs, Guru Gobind Singh Ji with older and much heavier taus. The structure of this instrument is somewhat like a medium sized sitar like neck with 20 metal frets. The punjabi instrument is held with the left shoulder and played with the help of a bow with the other hand along the frets. It is one of the Punjabi string instruments.

  1. Dhadd

Another hourglass-shaped Punjabi Folk Instrument is Dhadd. The Dhadd Instrument is natively used by the Dhaddi Players. This instrument is used in Punjab while performing Bhangra and creating live music for the dancers. The instrument is in an hourglass shape with ropes attached to its skin. This instrument is played by striking the fingers at one of its ends. This Punjabi Folk Musical Instrument also produces opening and closing sounds.

  1. Dhol

One of the favourite Punjabi Folk Musical instruments is Dhol. Everyone gets ready to dance to the sound of dhol from any corner of the nation. The dhol is a commonly seen instrument in Indian weddings. The culture of Dhol has been taken all around the world also by the Punjabis. It is a double sided barrel drum played with the help of wooden sticks. The musical instrument is mainly used during weddings, festivities around the nation. Everyone has their own style of playing the Punjabi Dhol. Even the girls around the culture can be seen playing it very professionally. Some people have a passion and now a career in being a Dholi around the world, which is something we should be proud of that the culture of the instruments is still alive.

  1. Gagar

A musical instrument which is used mainly to draw water from the wells, Ghagar. But today, Gagar Instrument is one of the Punjabi Instruments played by wearing rings in the fingers to produce a pitchy sound. It is a rarely used instrument in the punjabi folk songs.

  1. Ghara

    Ghara is another Punjabi Folk Musical Instrument. It is usually used during folk music, folk dance and composition of folk songs and majorly used in Punjab. It is basically the Earthen Pitch. It is played with both the hands and rings worn in the fingers. It produces a very soothing sound. To make the sound more fascinating, the player adds more of the gharas to add effects to the sound.
  1. Ektara

As the name suggests, Ektara is a single stringed Musical Instrument. It is majorly used in the Folk Music of South Asia. In Punjab, it is called IKTARA. The Ektara instrument is leaned against one of the shoulders and the string is plucked with the help of the index finger. Another Punjabi String Instruments which has only a string and produces a very melancholy voice.

  1. Kato

A beautifully created and composed Punjabi Instrument, Kato is originally created in Punjab. The kato instrument is used in the folk dance of Punjab. It is also used in traditional Punjabi Folk Music. The instrument literally means squirrel in Punjabi. It is made up of wood and is given a squirrel shape which is attached to a long wooden stick. A rope is attached to the squirrel’s mouth and tail. To play it, the rope is pulled to create a clap sound. 

  1. Khartal

An ancient discovery of Khartal Instrument is natively used in devotional and folk songs. In punjabi culture, it is mainly used in Gurudwara Kirtans. The Khartal Musical Instrument comes up in different shapes. Every shape consists of metallic jingles which generate a metallic sound and add rhythm to the song or the kirtan.

  1. Sapp

A creatively crafted wooden Punjabi Musical Instrument, Sapp is majorly used in Punjab. The sapp instrument is used in the bhangra performances. It is an X shape joined together. The sound is produced with the expanding and collapsing of the Instrument. It is one of the favourite instruments of the Bhangrachis. This punjabi folk instrument enhances the grace of the performance.

  1. Sarangi

Sarangi is another bow shaped stringed Punjabi Instrument. The sarangi instrument is used in Nepal Folk Music, Punjabi Folk Music and many others. The sound produced with this instrument resembles the human voice. This instrument is majorly used for the classical composition of the music.

  1. Tumbi

Tumbi, another favourite instrument among the Punjabi Folk Music. The instrument produces a high- pitched and is a single stringed instrument. Punjabi Tumbi is an instrument which is played with the fingers in which the single string is plucked. The Punjabi Tumbi is loved by every other Punjabi Folk group and even the bhangrachis. 


These instruments are just the love of every other Punjabi Folk Group whether a singing group or the Bhangra Group. The vibe created with the sound of such Punjabi instrument takes the audience to the traditional times. So, keep the Punjabi folk music and its antiqueness alive with the coming generation. 

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