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date: 16 December 2019

Zeze(i) [zenze, nzenze, nsense, nzensi, dzendze, lunzenze, nzeze, luzenzu, dizeze, sese, lusese]locked

  • K.A. Gourlay
  • , revised by Ferdinand J. de Hen

Extract

[zenze, nzenze, nsense, nzensi, dzendze, lunzenze, nzeze, luzenzu, dizeze, sese, lusese]

Stick zither widely distributed throughout the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The stick is a solid bar of wood 55 to 65 cm long and 2 to 3 cm wide throughout most of its length. Both ends of the bar terminate in a small knob to which the strings, of plant fibre, are attached. Three cylindrical ‘frets’ protrude on both sides of the stick. The U-shaped bridge is usually made of a feather quill. One or more drone strings pass beside the frets. A resonator made of two superposed calabash halves, or seldom a single half-calabash shell, is attached near one end; it is affixed to the underside of the bar by means of a small part-calabash collar and a cord. The zither produces four notes (open string and one note from each of the three frets) together with the drone(s). Accounts of the method of performance vary. Among the Shi the zither is held to the left so that the frets can be stopped with the fingers of the left hand while the thumb activates the drone string and the fingers of the right hand stroke the melody string. The half-calabash is usually placed on the player‘s chest and opened or closed in the same way as the resonator of a ...

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J.S. Laurenty: Les chordophones du Congo belge et du Ruanda Urundi (Tervuren, 1960)