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Friday, March 4, 2011

Korean Chordophones Instrument

Music is the window of the heart. Everybody loves music. I would like to share about Korean Traditional music especially chordophones instrument.

Chordophones instrument
Chordophones instrument is any musical instrument which makes sound by way of vibrating string or strings stretched between two points. Violins, guitars, and harp are some examples of chordophones instrument.

Two of Korean traditional chordophones instrument :

1. 거문고 or 현금 Geomun-go

Geomun-go, or hyeongeum in Chinese character form, is a composite word of:"geomun," meaning black(or Goguryo); and "go," meaning stringed instrument. According to the History of Three Kingdoms, Wang San-ak, a high-ranked official of the Goguryo dynasty, revised a Chinese seven-stringed instrument and made a new musical instrument. When he performed some musical pieces with the new instrument, a black crane came to the earth to dance to Wang’s music. From that time this musical instrument had been called hyeonhak-geum, meaning "black crane stringed instrument." Later it was called hyengeum meaning "black stringed instrument." The geomun-go has been played by the literati for their moral training.
The geomungo is generally played while seated on the floor. The strings are plucked with a short bamboo stick called suldae, which is held between the index and middle fingers of the right hand, while the left hand presses on the strings to produces various pitches. The most typical tuning of the open strings for the traditional Korean music is D#/Eb, G#/Ab, C, A#/Bb, A#/Bb, and A#/Bb an octave lower than the central tone. The instrument is played in traditional Korean court music and the folk styles of sanjo and sinawi.

2.가야금 Gayageum.

The gayageum means a stringed instrument (geum) of Gaya, an ancient country located in the southern part of the Korean peninsula. According to the History of Three Kingdoms, King Gasil of the Gaya dynasty created the gayageum based on a Chinese instrument. The body of the gayageum is made of a long paulownia. The instrument has twelve strings placed on movable bridges. The right hand makes the sound and the left hand makes the tunes. There are two kinds of gayageum; one used for classical music and the other used for folk music.

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