What to know

Discover These Arab Music Instruments

Arabic musical instruments arab music

Long before digital music and streaming, the Arab music and musical instruments dominated the world.

Not only do Arabic music and Arab musical instruments share a long history of interaction with music from around the different Arab and non-Arab communities that surround the region, but also all over the world.

Not only has Arabic music made it across the globe and gained a following of millions. Musical instruments that originated in the Arab world have influenced music all over the planet.

These are some:


The pear-shaped oud has a short-neck and sets of either 11 or 13 strings grouped in 5 or 6 courses. It resembles a guitar, but have been said to be harder to master by musicians who are familiar with both.


When the Arabs discovered the flute, they decided it was so awesome they doubled it (not true, just a joke). The name mijwiz means “dual” or “paired”, given that the instrument consists of two, short, bamboo reed popes.


Also known as a tambourine around the world, the daf is a large frame drum used in both contemporary and classical music. The hardwood frame is covered with fish skin (or other animal skin) and has several metal ringlets attached.


Made popular in movies with oriental themes, the qanun is a string instrument played solo, mostly as part of an ensemble.

The rebab

Also known as a joza around the Arab world, the rebab is something like a tiny violin. It is very popular among nomadic tribes and folk musicians.

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