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date: 13 November 2019

Rawaplocked

  • Rachel Harris

Extract

Long-necked lute of the Uyghurs. Several types are used, all played with a horn plectrum. The Kashgar rawap is about 90 cm long and has a small bowl-shaped soundbox with skin soundtable, a slender fretted neck with lateral pegs and five metal strings. Two down-curved ‘horns’ (munguz) extend from the neck on either side just above the soundbox. Traditionally played by narrative singers, it has been developed as a professional solo and orchestral instrument (tekemmul rawap) with six metal strings; orchestras include a bass version. The Khoten qoychi rawap (‘shepherd’s rawap’), about 70 cm long, has three single or two pairs of gut strings. The Dolan rawap, with pear-shaped soundbox, one melody string and several drones, resembles the Afghan rubab; it is the main instrument of the Dolan muqam (a genre of sung, instrumental, and dance music). The similar Qumul version accompanies folk songs and plays in the Qumul ...

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