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Bagara  

Ferdinand J. de Hen

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Bagpipe  

William A. Cocks

revised by Anthony C. Baines and Roderick D. Cannon

(Fr. cornemuse; Ger. Dudelsack, Sackpfeife; It. cornamusa, piva, zampogna; Port. gaita; Sp. cornamusa, gaita, zampoña)

A wind instrument which in its commonest forms consists of a chanter and one or more drones, all supplied with air from the bag, which is compressed under the player’s arm to provide a constant pressure. The instrument is classed as a composite reedpipe.

Bagpipes are generally used in the performance of traditional folk musics, and their designs vary in different countries or ethnic regions. The main exceptions to this rule include the occasional adoption of bagpipes by fashionable society and by composers of opera, ballet, concertos and chamber music, most notably in 18th-century France (see Musette and Musette), and the case of the Scottish Highland bagpipe, which became widespread in the 19th century and has displaced some local types. Some bagpipe traditions have flourished continuously to the present day, notably in Great Britain and Ireland, in north-western Spain, and in Bulgaria, but by the mid-20th century many regional types had become obsolete. Since the 1960s, however, there has been a considerable revival of interest, and many regional and older types are again being manufactured and played....

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Alastair Dick

Name for different flutes in Sind, Pakistan. One type is a thin, wooden transverse flute, about 1.5 cm in diameter and about 30 to 45 cm long, with six equidistant fingerholes. The other is an end-blown duct flute, this name being given to a flute of the paired duct flutes ...

Article

Alastair Dick

A bagpipe of central and southern India. It consists of a short blowpipe, a goatskin bag, and a bamboo single-reed chanter, and is used in the instrumental ensemble bajānā to accompany devotional music. Other south Indian names for the instrument are śruti upa ṅga and titti. The bagpipe appears to be obsolescent in this context nowadays and has been replaced by the ...

Article

Bajón  

J. Richard Haefer

[bajunes]

Multiple trumpet of the Mojos (Moxos) Indians of the San Ignacio de Moxos and Tacanas areas of Bolivia. Erroneously sometimes called a fagot or panpipe, it is popularly referred to as a bajón (big bass) by the Moxeños. It comprises 5 to 14 conical tubes of graduated length, made of rolled cusi palm fronds (Attalea speciosa) tied together side by side with pita (cactus fiber) or cotton yarn. It is sounded by buzzing the lips in a wooden mouthpiece at the end of each one-note tube, and is normally played in pairs. The longest tube is about 1.7 m long with a diameter of 22 mm at the blowing end and 5 to 10 cm at the distal end.

The bajón is probably of post-Contact origin and developed as an instrument for evangelization, likely providing a bass line in performances of European music in Jesuit missions. A similar instrument is the ...

Article

Bákura  

Alastair Dick

[bākurá dṛ́ti]

Indian term found in the ancient Sanskrit Ṛgveda (pre-1000 bce), sometimes interpreted, but without certainty, as a musical instrument. It occurs only twice, both times connected with the verb dhmā (‘to blow’), once in the simple form bákura (i, 117.21) and once in the adjectival form bákurá, qualifying the word dṛ́ti (‘skin, bag’; ix, 1.8). In the first, the twin sky-gods (the Aśvin) are said to have made light for the Aryans by blowing with a bákura upon the aboriginal foe; in the second, ‘the virgins send him forth: they blow the bākurá bag and fuse the triple foe-repelling mead [the sacred drink soma]’. The two passages appear to be mythologically connected. Some Indologists have translated the word as ‘trumpet’ or, in the latter instance, ‘bagpipe’, clearly implausible. Sachs (1940) identified it as the conch horn, an important instrument, under the name śa ṅkha...

Article

Ferdinand J. de Hen

Article

Jean During, Johanna Spector, Scheherazade Qassim Hassan and Mark Slobin

[balaman, yasti balaman, duduk]

(1) Cylindrical oboe of the Caucasus (particularly Azerbaijan), northern Iran and north-east Iraq. In northern Iran the bālābān is also known by its older Turkish name nerme ney or mey. It has a cylindrical wooden pipe, a broad reed and eight finger-holes, giving the scale E♭ (with an A♮). The warm, full tone of the bālābān is often used with the choghur (lute) and qāvāl (frame drum) to accompany the singing of an ‘āshiq (poet-singer); it is also played solo, and in pairs with one instrument providing a drone.

The Azerbaijani balaban is 28 to 31 cm long and made of mulberry or apricot wood. The reed is 9 to 11 cm long and is inserted into the globular head. The older balaban had five to seven finger-holes, while contemporary instruments have eight finger-holes and one thumb-hole. Sometimes an additional hole is made in the lower end of the tube at the back....

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Article

José Maceda

Bamboo instrument of the Kalinga people of the northern Philippines, combining elements of an idiophone and aerophone. It is called pahinghing or paginggeng by the Isneg and pakkung by the Ibaloy. A slot divides the upper half of the thin bamboo tube (about 40 cm long and 3 cm in diameter), and these halves are shaved and shaped into slender tongues. The lower part of the tube is split partway down as a continuation of the slot. When the tongues are struck against the heel of one hand, the split allows them to vibrate and buzz. A small hole at the base of the split is closed or opened by the thumb (or third finger) of the holding hand, altering the length of the air column of the tube and thus the pitch of the buzz. The balingbing is believed to drive away evil spirits when played by young girls in the evening or by boys along paths....

Article

Ferdinand J. de Hen

Article

John Webb

A tenor brass instrument with three valves, circular in shape and pitched in c (Trumpet family). It has a conical bore and a bell about 18 cm in diameter. An amateur's instrument, it was designed to play from songsheets or piano music without transposition.

The ballad horn was introduced by the London maker Henry Distin about 1856. Distin's instruments were made in ‘bell-down’ (french horn) form (see illustration), but Boosey & Co., who took over the Distin firm in 1868, added a ‘bell-up’ version and a version pitched an octave higher, which they called the liedhorn. Mouthpieces were funnel-shaped with an 18 mm inner rim diameter. Boosey supplied B♭ crooks with their ballad horns to allow them to be played with other brass instruments in B♭ and E♭, but there is no evidence that the instrument was ever used in brass bands. Similar instruments were made by several other makers, most notably Rudall, Carte & Co., whose ‘bell-forward’ model was called the ‘vocal horn’ (Boosey had registered the ballad horn name). Such instruments were very popular and many examples survive....

Article

Baluat  

Margaret J. Kartomi

revised by Gini Gorlinski

[belobat]

Narrow end-blown duct flute, found in slightly varied types in northern Sumatra, Indonesia. The instrument is used most notably by the Karo Mandailing and Toba Batak peoples of the province of North Sumatra, but also by the Gayo and Alas peoples of Aceh. Two types of baluat are distinguished in the Karo area: the baluat pingko-pingko and the baluat gendek. The relatively soft-toned baluat pingko-pingko is made from a bamboo tube usually 30 to 50 cm long and 1 to 2 cm wide at the top. The louder baluat gendek is about 24 cm long and 2 cm wide. Both types narrow towards the bottom and have six small fingerholes about 2 cm apart, sometimes with the third and sixth holes larger than the others. A bamboo or wooden block inserted into the top forms a small duct that directs the breath onto the sharp edge of a V-shaped opening cut just below the block. The lower end of the flute is usually cut at a node, which serves to strengthen the instrument. A small hole is made in the node. The ...

Article

Balum  

Bullroarer of the Bukaua, Yabem, and other peoples, Huon Gulf, Morobe Province, Papua New Guinea. The term is also used for a cult associated with secret flutes.

A.C. Haddon: ‘Migration of Cultures in British New Guinea’, Journal of the Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland, vol.50 (July–Dec 1920), 237–80....

Article

Balur  

Article

Stephen Cottrell

Term denoting several different single-reed aerophones. The most common type comprises a simple keyless reedpipe, in which one end is cut away at an angle to accommodate a large single reed. The reed is attached over the cut portion by a ligature and rests on the lower lip in performance. Six to eight fingerholes and a left-hand thumbhole are burned or drilled into the bamboo to provide a simple diatonic fingering pattern. Chromatic notes are achieved through cross fingerings or occasional half-holing. Notwithstanding the descriptor ‘saxophone’, almost certainly used for marketing purposes, the coupling of a large single reed with a cylindrical pipe means that such instruments are technically clarinets. Their sound lies somewhere between the clarinet’s and the Armenian duduk’s, and they have been used in film scores to emphasize exotic or ‘ethnic’ themes. An injection-moulded plastic version of the instrument has become known as the ‘pocket saxophone’. A less common type uses short bamboo sections of increasing diameter, glued end to end to create a conical-bore instrument that looks and behaves more like a conventional saxophone. Mouthpieces tend to vary, but in other respects, including fingering, the instrument resembles the first type; however, some examples have one or two added keys. The range of the instrument is up to two octaves, with the upper octave achieved by opening the thumbhole or overblowing other fingerings....

Article

Banci  

Patricia Matusky

[bangsi]

Large bamboo flute with five fingerholes, of the Bidayuh people of southern Sarawak, Malaysia. It is often played for entertainment (as background music) but can also be used in rituals, where it is believed to recall the spirit of a girl who has fainted or been in a trance. Young Bidayuh men play the smaller ...

Article

John M. Schechter

revised by J. Richard Haefer

(Sp.: mocha, ‘to cut’)

An ensemble of gourd (puro) trumpets of various sizes, used in the Chota river valley of Imbabura and Carchi provinces of Ecuador. Formed in the late 19th century by Afro-Ecuadorians without access to Western military band instruments, the ensemble includes several puros (calabazas) and pencos (cabuyos) along with other instruments. Puros, about 30 to 60 cm long, are made by cutting a rectangular blowhole near the stem end of a dried gourd and opening the distal end to form a sort of bell. Various sizes provide lead, alto, and tenor ranges. Pencos are made of hollow agave stems about 30 cm long and 7 cm in diameter, with a blowhole cut near one end on a side. The similar chile frito, an ensemble of central Guerrero, Mexico, consists of imitation band instruments made of assembled sections of gourds.

C.A. Coba Andrade: ‘Instrumentos musicales ecuatorianos’, ...

Article

[bandoneón]

Square-built button accordion or Concertina developed in the 1840s by Heinrich Band of Krefeld, but similar to the ‘Chemnitz’ concertina of C.F. Uhlig, invented in the previous decade. All early models were diatonic: they produced different notes on the push and pull of the bellows (see illustration ). In 1921 a chromatic model was introduced that produced the same note on the push and the pull: this instrument has almost totally eclipsed the diatonic variety. Most bandoneons have two reed banks and no shifts (register changes). Different models may have 64, 88, 104, 106, 128, 154, 176, and even 220 notes; the South American instrument usually has 38 keys or buttons for the high and medium registers and 33 for the lower register. The bandoneon has been used since about 1900 as a solo virtuoso instrument in tango orchestras of Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil. Perhaps its most famous exponent was the Argentine Astor Piazzolla (...