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Japanese instruments: Wikis

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Kitagawa Utamaro, "Flowers of Edo: Young Woman's Narrative Chanting to the Samisen", ca. 1880

Traditional Japanese musical instruments comprise a wide range of string, wind, and percussion instruments.

Contents

String

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Plucked

Bowed

  • Kokyū (胡弓) - bowed lute with three (or, more rarely, four) strings and a skin-covered body

Wind

Flutes

Japanese flutes are called Fue.

Reeded Instruments

Free reed mouth organs

  • Shō () - 17-pipe mouth organ used for gagaku
  • U () - large mouth organ

Horns

  • Horagai (法螺貝) - seashell horn; also called jinkai (陣貝)

Percussion

An ornately painted tsuri-daiko, used in gagaku music

Drums

Other

  • Hyōshigi (拍子木) - wooden or bamboo clappers
  • Mokugyo (木魚) - woodblock carved in the shape of a fish, struck with a wooden stick; often used in Buddhist chanting
  • Shōko (鉦鼓) - small gong used in gagaku; struck with two horn beaters
  • Sasara (ささら) - clapper made from wooden slats connected by a rope or cord
    • Ita-sasara (板ささら) - clapper made from wooden slats connected by a rope or cord
    • Bin-sasara (編木, 板ささら; also spelled bin-zasara) - clapper made from wooden slats connected by a rope or cord
  • Kokiriko (筑子, こきりこ) - many people confuse the kokiriko with the sasara and sasara are often sold in the West under the name kokiriko. In fact, the kokiriko is a pair of sticks which are beaten together slowly and rhythmically.
  • Kagura suzu - hand-held bell tree with three tiers of pellet bells
  • Kane () - small flat gong
  • Shakubyoshi (also called shaku) - clapper made from a pair of flat wooden sticks

Other

See also


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