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Booking Dhol Players For Asian Weddings & Events

What Is A Dhol?

Drums have always been used for communication and the dhol is no exception! In recent times the dhol’s main message is to have a good time!

In its current form the dhol is a North Indian drum which originates from the Panjab region. It has existed in various forms for centuries from being a war drum and then evolving to become a tool of celebration.

The actual instrument could be described as a derivative of the tabla with a bass side and treble side that are used to construct beats.

The dhol is played with 2 sticks - a daggah and a thili, by the dholi (dholplayer). The thili is a light, thin and flexible stick that allows you to get speed and clarity from the treble side whereas the daggah is a heavier and rigid L-shaped stick that allows you to get power for the bass.

Where Is A Dhol Used?

The Dhol is a loud instrument and is commonplace at weddings, parties, festivals and generally anywhere you want to have fun!

At weddings dhol players have the responsibility of creating a positive energy and are generally used to inform guests of the arrival of the Bharat (groom's family) or the arrival of the newly weds.

During the wedding celebrations the dhol players can collaborate with the event DJ to provide a performance with music. This is the true test of a dholplayer's skill because the dhol player should be able to cater to any type of audience and their music preference.

How Can You Book Yourself A Professional Dhol Player?

Over the years many dhol groups have formed and now even DJs offer dhol player services to clients.

However, although the choice is great, like many industries, Asian entertainment also suffers from unprofessional outfits trying to take your money and not focusing on your all important event.

How can you avoid this happening to you? has compiled a list of important questions to ask when booking dhol players:

What can I do to check that the dhol player is of a high standard?
Always check the dhol player's credentials and, where possible, ask to see feedback from previous clients and/or videos of the dhol player's past performances. Better still, ask to see the Dhol players in action.

You can’t beat a live demo and it gives you the chance to meet the dhol players, see if the team are a professional & synchronised, and whether they are fit to perform at your event.

What is the Dholplayer going to wear?
A dhol player and his team should be able to play to a high standard but they should also dress the part.

Do you really want to look back at your wedding video and see a dhol player in jeans and trainers?? This actually happens and clients accept it as the norm – it isn’t! A professional dhol player knows presentation is everything.

How many dhol players do I need?
The role of a the dholplayer is to fill your venue with powerful dhol beats and to grab everyone's attention.

An easy guideline therefore is one dhol player for up to 150 guests. If you have a venue that holds 500 guests, four dhol players will sound fantastic and give you the energy you’re looking for.

For bigger venues, or to accommodate smaller budgets, professional dhol players can provide wireless microphones.

Should I book the dholplayer separately or through the event DJ?
Take the time to see what you’re booking. A good DJ will only use the best dholplayers and can sometimes offer you preferential rates on dholplayers.

However, DJs can be unprofessional too and very often use amateur dhol players with little experience to save some money – you get what you pay for!

What’s a reasonable amount to spend on a dhol player?
A good quality professional dhol player will charge around the £100 per dhol player mark but dhol players are known to offer discounts if you book more than one.

However, don’t make the mistake of booking a dholplayer solely based on price. You might find yourself faced with two options where one dhol player is £20 cheaper but is it really worth the risk to your once in a lifetime event? No!

We hope you find this article both informative and useful to you in your upcoming events. Good Luck in your search and we hope your event is one to remember!

This article was kindly contributed by Gurdev Lota of The Dholplayer Collective.