Modern Bodhrán

(4 customer reviews)


Modern Bodhrán brings the age old traditional Celtic frame drum into the contemporary music landscape. With its rhythmic heartbeat resonating through centuries of Irish culture, the bodhrán has evolved into a captivating instrument sought after by musicians across genres.

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Modern Bodhrán brings the age old traditional Celtic frame drum into the contemporary music landscape.

With its rhythmic heartbeat resonating through centuries of Irish culture, the bodhrán has evolved into a captivating instrument sought after by musicians across genres.

Modern Bodhrán captures the essence of these iconic drums with its meticulously recorded and expertly crafted samples.

Walkthrough by Audio Plugin Deals
Review by Composing Gloves

Whether you’re composing cinematic scores, folk tunes, or experimenting with electronic music,

Modern Bodhrán empowers you to add an authentic and innovative touch to your compositions, igniting the spirit of the bodhrán in the modern era.

The 13000 samples in this library were beautifully performed by Marissa Waite and recorded at Grans House Studio in Scotland.

Technical Walkthrough

Technical Walkthrough

Audio Demos

About the Library

Modern Bodhrán is a traditional Celtic percussion library featuring four unique drums. These instruments have been hand built by master craftsmen.

The bodhrán is capable of producing a wide array of tones based on the musician’s hand position within the instrument. Despite the complex nature of playing a real bodhrán this library makes it easy for anyone with a keyboard to play like an expert.

The five performance presets make the library incredibly flexible. You can choose the preset that suits your playing style to quickly integrate the library into your workflow.

We recorded five unique tones for each drum, they were all played with three different sticks, recorded at three dynamics, with five microphones, and we included individual up and down strokes, with 6 repetitions for each. This gives you a total of 36 recorded variations per tone.

In addition to the library and its 13300 samples, you’ll also receive 22 MIDI loops to give you a starting point for your own creations. The loops were created from notation provided by Marissa and as a bonus you will also receive that hand written notation.


Modern Bodhrán features four unique drums recorded with three different types of stick:

Drum 1 was built by Seamus O’Kane in Ireland in 2005. It’s made with lambeg skin and has 8 standard tuners on the inside of the rim which are manipulated with a screwdriver. This is quite a big drum with a 16″ frame and it has a beautiful smooth tone with a huge range. The tones have a really clear and soft quality, with a booming low end and a very high and striking top end.

Drum 2 is a wonderful bodhrán made by Christian Hedwitschak, who is based in Germany. He crafts beautiful bodhráns, and they are certainly some of the most sought after and revered in the bodhrán playing community. The model we sampled is the Martin O’Neill Signature line, made around 2014. This is a slightly smaller drum at 14″ with a depth of 6″. It has a beautiful skin with a huge range of tones that gives a very balanced sound across the whole range of the drum.

Drum 3 was built sometime around 2007 by Steve Forman. Steve is a fantastic and highly respected percussionist based in LA who relocated to Scotland. This bodhrán is one he made as part of his Tambourine Studios Bodhrán collection. This bodhrán is made with a premium natural rawhide goatskin, on a 13″ all-maple Keller cylinder frame. It has a wide range of tones and a slightly ‘harder’ tonal quality to the skin

Drum 4 was crafted by John Wilson of Skye Bodhráns sometime around 2009/2010. Another of the more modern style bodhráns with a deep rim and smaller 13″ frame. It has quite a wide range of tones and responds nicely under a mic and live. It also gives a good range of volume and responds well to the strength with which you strike the skin. As is common for many bodhráns made around this time, it is a more comfortable drum to play with its diameter and depth, but not as big a range tonally as one of Seamus O’Kane’s.


The bodhrán is capable of producing a range of tones depending on how and where the player places their hand inside the drum. In addition to the five hand positions we also recorded a selection of rim shots.

Round Robins & Dynamics

For every stick and every tone of the four drums we recorded both up and down strokes at three dynamic levels. Each of these was recorded six times to give a total of twelve variations at each dynamic or 36 per tone.


Each drum includes five patches that change how the samples are mapped and the methods used to trigger them. Which one you choose will depend on your preferred playing style.

Some patches spread the samples across the keyboard allowing you to trigger individual up and down samples and even individual round robins.

There is an auto patch that will select the stroke direction for you automatically so you can focus on the rhythm.

Other patches try to emulate the way the real instrument is played. Letting you pick the stroke direction and intensity with one hand while the other hand selects the tone.

You can explore the details of each patch in the user guide.


We recorded everything with five microphones. Three were placed at the back of the drum and two at the front. In addition a stereo mix of the five microphones is included. The volume and pan of each channel can be controlled using the on-screen mixer.

MIDI Loops

Modern Bodhrán includes 22 MIDI loops for you to drop in to your sessions.

The selection of loops provide 4/4 grooves and Irish reels, 6/8 jigs, 7/8 grooves, and 9/8 slip jigs.

Creating MIDI Loops

Top Features


Each with it’s own history and sonic character.


6 Individual up and down strokes for each drum, recorded with 3 different sticks.


You have control over each individual mic plus a mix down stereo channel.


A huge range of variations per tone thanks to the number of dynamics, sticks, strokes, and round robins.


22 MIDI loops with handwritten notation to get you started.


Each drum includes 5 different performance patches to suit your playing style.

System Requirements

GNU/Linux (Ubuntu 16.0+)
Windows 7+
MacOS 10.14+ (Apple Silicon native)
Runs in the free Rhapsody player

Host must support 64bit VST3 or AU
AAX (Pro-Tools) is not supported

4 reviews for Modern Bodhrán

  1. Norbert (verified owner)

    Amazing library. Samples sound realistic and while they’re not completely dry, they have a very subtle room baked in, leaving plenty of space for additional reverb and other creative FX, not to mention 5 out-of-the-box mics you can freely mix together. It’s very playable with Auto presets to get quick inspirations and ideas, and some more detailed other presets for advanced production. It instantly became my go-to Celtic drum library and I really can’t recommend it enough!

  2. Geoff Beasley (verified owner)

    Top notch library. Rhapsody is a fabulous engine too! I love the flexibility and straightforward interface. The new load features are great and easy to use and understand at a glance. The midi implementation offers great usability.

    The Bodhran(s) sound full, lifelike and balanced. The multi outputs give fantastic variety of positions and focus. The included midi files are a real bonus too! Excellent work.

    A very impressive library.

  3. jazzkeyboard (verified owner)

    MODERN BODHRAN sounds great !!! There so much you can do with this instrument. With the many controls and sounds here, you could take a week just trying things out to fit your tracks. A drum kit together with a bodhran is beautiful for rhythm textures.

  4. Shinami-Sound (verified owner)

    I was first worried that this library might sound too boomy with excessive lows, but with the ability to tweak the available mics, I was able to get the right mix for myself. Moreover, multi-channel output support really helps to shape the sound even further. The sufficient number of round-robins and flexible MIDI control options make for a realistic sound.

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