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Aporo  

Peter Cooke

End-blown trumpet of the Labwor and Nyakwai peoples of Karamoja, Uganda. It is an open tube of aporo wood (hence the name) up to 91 cm long and 5.5 cm in diameter. The aporo is played by women, chiefly for their acut dance and is blown into at either end with the cheeks well distended and the hands holding it in the middle. It sounds not unlike a foghorn. A number of ...

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Apwanga  

F.J. de Hen

Article

Kenneth S. Habib

Having come to Amrīkā (or Amērikā) from every Arabic-speaking society, Arab Americans have sought liberty and opportunity like their newfound compatriots hailing from elsewhere in the world. With roots stretching from Morocco to Iraq and from Syria to Yemen, they have brought a rich musical heritage that involves wide-ranging musical practices and that includes some of the oldest continuously performed art music in the world. They also have played formative roles in the development of American popular music and in the multilateral exchange of music culture between Arab and American societies.

Arabs have immigrated to the United States from widespread geographical and socio-political environments. Motivations to leave home for a land halfway around the world have included fleeing political persecution, seeking greater economic prosperity, and following loved ones who preceded them. Immigrants typically have sent money “back home” in support of immediate and extended families while any hope of eventually returning themselves has often given way to an acceptance or an embrace of the United States as their new and permanent home....

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Ardin  

K.A. Gourlay

Angle harp played by Moorish women of Mauritania. It usually has 11 to 14 strings and a neck more than 100 cm long. The neck is inserted into a hemispherical calabash resonator, about 40 cm in diameter, which is covered with a stretched sheepskin. The strings are attached to a curved wooden rod on the soundtable, into which each end of the rod disappears, and to tuning pegs at the upper end. Circular metal discs with small rings round the edges are fixed on the soundtable. The harp is played with its body in front of the seated player, the neck to the left of the player’s head. It can be played with both hands or only with the left, the right then providing a percussive accompaniment on the soundtable.

The ardin is used to accompany solo singing, usually by women (sometimes two harps accompany two women singers), together with either the drum ...

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Arekwa  

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Ari (i)  

Peter Cooke

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Arigo  

F.J. de Hen

[drigo, rigo]

Trapezoidal or tulip-shaped Slit-drum of the Mangutu of the northeastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. In the region of Watsa Gombari the trapezoidal arigo is reserved for the use of the chief.

LaurentyTF, 139 F.J. de Hen: Beitrag zur Kenntnis der Musikinstrumente aus Belgisch Kongo und Ruanda-Urundi (Tervuren, 1960), 48, 59...

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Aro  

Amanda Villepastour

Combined rattle and concussion Clappers of the Yorùbá people of Nigeria and Benin. The instrument comprises two metal rings, each holding three containers, inside which are pellets. The player holds the instruments more or less horizontally and strikes the sides of the rings together. The aro can be incorporated into the ...

Article

Watson Forbes

(b King William’s Town, South Africa, March 4, 1916; d Ipswich, Sept 7, 1978). British viola player of Russian-Lithuanian parentage. He studied the violin with Achille Rivarde at the RCM, London, and played in the major London orchestras until the war, after which he changed to the viola. He became principal viola with the Goldsbrough Orchestra (later the English Chamber Orchestra) in 1949 and with the London Mozart Players from 1952 to 1964. In the English Opera Group orchestra he played in the early performances of Britten’s church parables. However, it was chiefly in chamber music that he achieved distinction; he was a founder-member of Musica da Camera (1946), the Melos Ensemble (1950) and the Pro Arte Piano Quartet (1965). He had a particularly polished technique and an easy manner of integration, qualities very evident when he played as extra viola with the Amadeus String Quartet in quintets, blending with those players to produce performances of outstanding merit. He married the pianist Nicola Grunberg, with whom he formed a duo ensemble. He was professor of the viola and chamber music at the RCM from ...

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Arote  

F.J. de Hen

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Christian Poché

[‘arṭab, ‘arṭāba, ‘urṭuba]

Abyssinian drum, lyre, or lute of the early Islamic era. The word sounds foreign to the language and has no known derivation in it, but an Ethiopian origin remains plausible. Some Arab lexicographers have identified the instrument as an Abyssinian drum, similar to the kūba, but there is no solid evidence for this. Others have identified it as a ṭunbūr, which might be a lyre or a long-necked lute. Evidence presented by the 9th-century historian al-Hamdān (Iklīl, viii, 160–65) suggests a lyre as the more likely, but the possibility of a lute cannot be rejected. Since the classical era (9th and 10th centuries) the instrument has been classed with the ‘ūd, as have other types such as the kinnāra, barba , muwattar, and mizhar. Andalusian writers specify the quality of the instrument’s strings, which they call ma ḥbad (‘bow string or string of a wool-carder’), but Abbasid authors are more general in their descriptions. The instrument was finally integrated into the lute family and the name transformed by metathesis into ‘atraba’, as mentioned by the 16th-century writer Ibn Ḥajar al-Haythamī (...

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Arub  

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J.H. Kwabena Nketia

[Ashanti]

The music of one of the dominant and culturally important ethnic groups in Ghana, Republic of . The Asante number about 1,500,000 and are grouped politically into large territorial units, each of which is headed by a paramount chief under whom there are district chiefs of different ranks. The constitutional head of the Asante is the Asantehene, to whom all paramount chiefs owe allegiance. In the pre-colonial period, the Asante sphere of influence spread over many parts of Ghana and extended westwards to the borders of Côte d’Ivoire and eastwards across the Volta.

The traditional political structure of the Asante is reflected in the organization of their music. Firstly, the music of the court is separated from that of the community, while the hierarchical ordering of chiefs under the Asantehene is reflected in the number and types of instruments and ensembles that each royal court can have. Secondly, court music is performed on state occasions and festivals, whereas community music is performed on all other social occasions. Thirdly, as the practice of music in community life is organized on the basis of the social groups within it, the inventory of musical types and songs of the community is much larger than that of the court. Fourthly, although there is no idiomatic differentiation between court music and the music of the community, the music of the court tends to be more sophisticated or elaborate in organization, or more complex in structure. Accordingly, the training and recruitment of court musicians is institutionalized....

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Asei  

F.J. de Hen

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Saadalla Agha Al-Kalaa

(b during a voyage from Turkey to Syria, 1917; d Egypt, July 14, 1944). Syrian singer. Born to a well-known Syrian family, she moved to Cairo with her family in 1924 and made some commercial recordings while still a teenager. In 1932 she married her cousin Prince Ḥasan al-Aṭrash and returned to Syria. After giving birth to a daughter she was pronounced unable to produce any more children (and not therefore a son and heir). She left her husband to give him the chance of having an heir, and thereafter deep sadness marked her life and the romantic meanings in her songs.

Staying in Cairo with her mother, she made singing her profession. She sang compositions by her brother, Farīd al- Aṭrash, and later co-starred in his film Intiṣār al-shabāb (‘Triumph of youth’). The greatest composers wrote for her: Midhat Assem, Zakariyyā Aḥmad, Muḥammad al-Qasabjī and Riyāḍ al-Sunbaṭī. She sang in Muḥammed ‘Abd al-Wahhāb's film ...

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Asok  

Article

Jeremy Montagu

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Laurence Libin