As we are starting a new course this term all about playing finger cymbals (And this time it's not just for tribal fusion dancers!) I make a little intro video on youtube all about how to play them and introducing you to a couple of simple rhythms to play at home on your real zills, or maybe on your imaginary zills for some bad ass air zilling.
- How to hold and play the zills
- Different ways of playing the zills
- Three basic patterns: 3's, 31313, and 4's
Places to buy zills and how to choose!
As I said in the video, the bigger the better! You are probably looking at £10-£15 for a decent pair - for an awesome pair, it's somewhere between £20 and £60.
What you want to make sure you get are zills with two holes for elastic, rather than one hole. One hole makes them really flimsy and wobbly on your fingers and they will be harder to play - they sell these kind in Nomads in Cambridge and I have a few if you want them, but try to get ones with two holes.
You can get some pretty good ones from Zara's Zhouk here , they are about £14 all in with postage.
Aladdin's Cave (http://www.aladdinscave.com) are an awesome shop based on the Welsh Border who usually stock Saroyans (see below) - they don;t seem to right now, but you can always give em' a ring and see if they are getting them back any time soon.
Saroyan and Turqouise International are the top zill makers, based in America: They are pretty difficult to find a supplier of in the UK right now. Saroyan had a little closing up shop drama, but that seems to be all lies. On their site ( http://www.saroyanzils.com ) they have a cool bit where you can listen to each zill and see how it sounds.
The zills in the video come from Fat Chance Bellydance: they are sold out at the moment and are horrifically expensive to ship to the UK!
Other zills I am in love with are Suhaila Salimpour's zills: they are made and designed by Turquoise International and are proper high end and sexy.
If you have found any great UK suppliers of zills, let me know in the Comments below!