Saturday, August 25, 2012

The Japanese Musical instruments

A girl on a  peacock playing a Biwa

Let's design a new Gekkin

The Gekkin is the close relative of the Chinese yueqin, and nowadays the instrument is not made in Japan anymore.
The old instrument is almost the same as the yueqin : so two circles of softwood for soundboard and back, joined by a narrow strip of hardwood for the sides. It has a separate neck, with a sickle shape pegbox, ending in a decorative plate at the front with some woodcarving.
The strings are tuned with long rounded friction pegs, two on each side of the open pegbox. Bamboo strips glued to the fingerboard are used as frets, usually in a full western scale.
Sometimes on the old Japanese instruments there was special decoration or even soundholes on the soundboard.
It is played with a plectrum, but the gekkin is not often used anymore.
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2 boys hide behind a Gekkin

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