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date: 14 November 2019


  • K.A. Gourlay


Mouth bow of the Konjo people of Uganda. It is made from a section of the wall of a bamboo pole 1.5 to 1.75 cm wide and a few millimetres thick. A small half-calabash, the size of an orange and large enough to cover the player’s mouth, is tied to the centre of the bow; the string is slack when not in use and for performance is passed over notches to the ends of the bow to hold it taut. When played, the half-calabash is placed over the mouth, or across a corner of the mouth and cheek, and the tip of the bow is supported firmly in the upturned left hand, the thumb and forefinger of which are free to stop the string, or occasionally to pluck it. The right hand strokes the string with a broad piece of grass not more than 5 cm long. (K.P. Wachsmann and M. Trowell: ...

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