The nadaswaram, nagaswaram, or nathaswaram is a double reed wind instrument from Tamilnadu. It is used as a traditional classical instrument in Tamilnadu, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala; this instrument is "among the world's loudest non-brass acoustic instruments". It is a wind instrument similar to the North Indian shehnai but much longer, with a hardwood body and a large flaring bell made of wood or metal. In Tamil culture, the nadaswaram is considered to be auspicious, it is a key musical instrument played in all Hindu weddings and temples of the South Indian tradition, it is part of the family of instruments known as mangala vadyam. The instrument is played in pairs, accompanied by a pair of drums called thavil. Nadaswaram is referred in many ancient Tamil texts. Silappatikaram refers to an instrument called "vangiyam"; the structure of this instrument matches that of Nadaswaram. Since there are seven holes played with seven fingers this was called as "Ezhil"; this instrument, too, is played in Tamil Nadu and popular among the Tamil Diaspora.
The nadaswaram contains three parts namely, kuzhal and anasu. It is a double reed instrument with a conical bore which enlarges toward the lower end; the top portion has a metal staple into, inserted a small metallic cylinder which carries the mouthpiece made of reed. Besides spare reeds, a small ivory or horn needle is attached to the instrument, used to clear the reed of saliva and other debris and allows free passage of air. A metallic bell forms the bottom end of the instrument. Traditionally the body of the nadaswaram is made out of a tree called aacha, although nowadays bamboo, copper, brass and ivory are used. For wooden instruments, old wood is considered the best, sometimes wood salvaged from demolished old houses is used; the nadaswaram has seven finger-holes, five additional holes drilled at the bottom which can be stopped with wax to modify the tone. The nadaswaram has a range of two and a half octaves, similar to the Indian bansuri flute, which has a similar fingering. Unlike the flute where semi and quarter tones are produced by the partial opening and closing of the finger holes, in the nadaswaram they are produced by adjusting the pressure and strength of the air-flow into the pipe.
Due to its intense volume and strength it is an outdoor instrument and much more suited for open spaces than for indoor concerts. Some of the greatest early nadaswaramists include Thirumarukal Nadesa Pillai Thiruvavaduthurai Rajarathnam Pillai Thiruvengadu Subramania Pillai, Vedaranyam Vedamoorthy Karukurichi Arunachalam Pillai Thirucherai Sivasubramanian Pillai Thiruvarur S Latchappa Pillai Kulikkarai Pichaiyappa Andankoil A V Selvarathnam Pillai Thiruvizha Jayashankar Brother teams of Keeranur and Thiruveezhimizhalai, Semponnarkoil Brothers S R G Sambandam and Rajanna. Dharumapuram S. Abiramisundaram Pillai and his son Dharumapuram A Govindarajan Sheik Chinna Moulana Namagiripettai Krishnan Madurai M. P. N. Sethuraman - Ponnusamy brothers Alaveddy N. K. Pathmanathan Dr. MSK Shankaranarayanan Injikudi E. M. Subramaniam Thirumalam T. S. Pandian Bangalore Ramadasappa Tiruvalaputtur T K Venupilla Kulikkarai Brothers K. M DaksahaMoorthi Pillai & K. M Ganeshan PillaiAmerican composers such as Lewis Spratlan have expressed admiration for the nadaswaram, a few jazz musicians have taken up the instrument: Charlie Mariano is one of the few non-Indians able to play the instrument, having studied it while living in India.
Vinny Golia, J. D. Parran, William Parker have performed and recorded with the instrument; the German saxophonist Roland Schaeffer plays it, having studied from 1981 to 1985 with Karupaia Pillai. Among the Tamil movies, two released in 1960s,namely Konjum Salangai starring Gemini Ganesan and Thillana Mohanambal starring Sivaji Ganesan, featured nadaswaram playing characters. For the Konjum Salankai movie, Karukurichi Arunasalam Pillai provided the nadaswaram music. Madurai Sethuraman and Ponnusamy brothers were employed for the nadaswaram playing duo characters Sivaji Ganesan and A. V. M. Rajan for the Thillana Mohanambal movie. Tavil Images from The Beede Gallery Shawms, Southern India, ca. 1900-1940. National Music Museum, University of South Dakota
The contrabassoon known as the double bassoon, is a larger version of the bassoon, sounding an octave lower. Its technique is similar to its smaller cousin, with a few notable differences; the reed is larger than the bassoon's, at 65–75 mm in total length as compared to 53–58 mm for most bassoon reeds. The large blades allow ample vibration; the contrabassoon reed is similar to an average bassoon's in that scraping the reed affects both the intonation and response of the instrument. The fingering of the contrabassoon is different than that of the bassoon at the register change and in the extreme high range; the instrument is twice as long, curves around on itself twice, due to its weight and shape, is supported by an endpin rather than a seat strap. Additional support is sometimes given by a strap around the player's neck. A wider hand position is required, as the primary finger keys are spaced; the contrabassoon has a water key to expel condensation and a tuning slide for gross pitch adjustments.
The instrument comes in a few pieces. Sometimes, the bell can be detached, instruments with a low A extension come in two parts; the contrabassoon is a deep sounding woodwind instrument that plays in the same sub-bass register as the tuba and the contrabass versions of the clarinet and saxophone. It has a sounding range beginning at B♭0 and extending up three octaves and a major third to D4. Donald Erb and Kalevi Aho write higher in their concertos for the instrument; the instrument is notated an octave above sounding pitch in bass clef, with tenor or treble clef called for in high passages. Tonally, it sounds much like the bassoon except for a distinctive organ pedal quality in the lowest octave of its range which provides a solid underpinning to the orchestra or concert band; the lowest range, in comparison with the bassoon, can be played more than the bassoon can. Although the instrument can have a distinct'buzz', which becomes a clatter in the extreme low range, this is nothing more than a variance of tone quality which can be remediated by appropriate reed design changes.
While prominent in solo and small ensemble situations, the sound can be obscured in the volume of the full orchestra or concert band. Precursors to the contrabassoon are documented as early as 1590 in Austria and Germany, at a time when the growing popularity of doubling the bass line led to the development of lower-pitched dulcians. Examples of these low-pitched dulcians include the octavebass, the quintfaggot, the quartfaggot. There is evidence that a contrafagott was used in Frankfurt in 1626. Baroque precursors to the contrabassoon developed in France in the 1680's, in England in the 1690's, independent of the dulcian developments in Austria and Germany during the previous century; the contrabassoon was developed in England, in the mid-18th century. It was around that time; some notable early uses of the contrabassoon during this period include in J. S. Bach's St. John's Passion, G. F. Handel's Music for the Royal Fireworks; until the late 19th century, the instrument had a weak tone and poor intonation.
For this reason, the contrabass woodwind parts were scored for, contrabassoon parts were played on, contrabass sarrusophone or, less reed contrabass, until improvements by Heckel in the late 19th century secured the contrabassoon's place as the standard double reed contrabass. For more than a century, between 1880 and 2000, Heckel’s design remained unchanged. Chip Owen at the American company, began manufacturing an instrument in 1971 with some improvements. During the 20th century changes to the instrument were limited to an upper vent key near the bocal socket, a tuning slide, a few key linkages to facilitate technical passages. In 2000, Heckel announced a new keywork for its instrument and Fox introduced its own new key system based on input from New York Philharmonic contrabassoonist Arlan Fast. Both companies' improvements allow for improved technical facility as well as greater range in the high register. Most major orchestras use one contrabassoonist, either as a primary player or a bassoonist who doubles, as do a large number of symphonic bands.
The contrabassoon is a supplementary orchestral instrument and is most found in larger symphonic works doubling the bass trombone or tuba at the octave. Frequent exponents of such scoring were Brahms and Mahler, as well as Richard Strauss, Dmitri Shostakovich; the first composer to write a separate contrabassoon part in a symphony was Beethoven, in his Fifth Symphony, although Bach, Handel and Mozart had used it in other genres. Composers have used the contrabassoon to comical or sinister effect by taking advantage of its seeming "clumsiness" and its sepulchral rattle, respectively. A clear examp
The algaita is a double reed wind instrument from West Africa among the Hausa and Kanuri peoples. Its construction is similar to the zurna; the algaita is distinguished from these other instruments by its larger, trumpet-like bell. Instead of keys, it has open holes for fingering, similar to the zurna. Music from the Villages of Northeastern Nigeria "Music of the Cameroon - The Fulani of the North" Yusef Lateef, In Nigeria, Yusef Lateef, The African-American Epic Suite H. G. Farmer, "The Arab Influence on the Western Soudan." The Musical Standard, 15 November, 1924. Oboe Rhaita Shawm Zurna Alghaita page Algaita page
An aulos or tibia was an ancient Greek wind instrument, depicted in art and attested by archaeology. An aulete was the musician; the ancient Roman equivalent was the tibicen, from the Latin tibia, "pipe, aulos." The neologism aulode is sometimes used by analogy with rhapsode and citharode to refer to an aulos player, who may be called an aulist. There were several kinds of aulos, double; the most common variety was a reed instrument. Archeological finds, surviving iconography and other evidence indicate that it was double-reeded, like the modern oboe, but with a larger mouthpiece, like the surviving Armenian duduk. A single pipe without a reed was called the monaulos. A single pipe held horizontally, as the modern flute, was the plagiaulos. A pipe with a bag to allow for continuous sound, a bagpipe, was the askaulos. Though aulos is erroneously translated as "flute", it was a double-reeded instrument, its sound — described as "penetrating and exciting" — was more akin to that of the bagpipes, with a chanter and drone.
Like the Great Highland Bagpipe, the aulos has been used for martial music, but it is more depicted in other social settings. It was the standard accompaniment of the passionate elegiac poetry, it accompanied physical activities such as wrestling matches, the broad jump, the discus throw and to mark the rowing cadence on triremes, as well as sacrifices and dramas. Plato associates it with the ecstatic cults of Dionysus and the Korybantes, banning it from his Republic but reintroducing it in "Laws", it appears that some variants of the instrument were loud and therefore hard to blow. A leather strap, called a phorbeiá in Greek or capistrum in Latin, was worn horizontally around the head with a hole for the mouth by the auletai to help support the lips and avoid excessive strain on the cheeks due to continuous blowing. Sometimes a second strap was used over the top of the head to prevent the phorbeiá from slipping down. Aulos players are sometimes depicted with puffed cheeks; the playing technique certainly made use of circular breathing much like the Sardinian launeddas and Armenian duduk, this would give the aulos a continuous sound.
Although aristocrats with sufficient leisure sometimes practiced aulos-playing as they did the lyre, after the fifth century the aulos became chiefly associated with professional musicians slaves. Such musicians could achieve fame; the Romano-Greek writer Lucian discusses aulos playing in his dialogue Harmonides, in which Alexander the Great's aulete Timotheus discusses fame with his pupil Harmonides. Timotheus advises him to impress the experts within his profession rather than seek popular approval in big public venues. If leading musicians admire him, popular approval will follow. However, Lucian reports. In myth, Marsyas the satyr was supposed to have invented the aulos, or else picked it up after Athena had thrown it away because it caused her cheeks to puff out and ruined her beauty. In any case, he challenged Apollo to a musical contest, where the winner would be able to "do whatever he wanted" to the loser—Marsyas's expectation, typical of a satyr, was that this would be sexual in nature.
But Apollo and his lyre beat his aulos. And since the pure lord of Delphi's mind worked in different ways from Marsyas's, he celebrated his victory by stringing his opponent up from a tree and flaying him alive. King Midas was cursed with donkey's ears for judging Apollo as the lesser player. Marsyas's blood and the tears of the Muses formed the river Marsyas in Asia Minor; this tale was a warning against committing the sin of "hubris", or overweening pride, in that Marsyas thought he might win against a god. Strange and brutal as it is, this myth reflects a great many cultural tensions that the Greeks expressed in the opposition they drew between the lyre and aulos: freedom vs. servility and tyranny, leisured amateurs vs. professionals, moderation vs. excess, etc. Some of this is a result of 19th century AD "classical interpretation", i.e. Apollo versus Dionysus, or "Reason" opposed to "Madness". In the temple to Apollo at Delphi, there was a shrine to Dionysus, his Maenads are shown on drinking cups playing the aulos, but Dionysus is sometimes shown holding a kithara or lyre.
So a modern interpretation can be a little more complicated than just simple duality. This opposition is an Athenian one, it might be surmised that things were different at Thebes, a center of aulos-playing. At Sparta – which had no Bacchic or Korybantic cults to serve as contrast – the aulos was associated with Apollo, accompanied the hoplites into battle; the battle scene on the Chigi vase shows an aulos player setting a lyrical rhythm for the hoplite phalanx to advance to. This accompaniment reduced the possibility of an opening in the formation of the blockage. In this particular scene, the phalanx approaching from the left is unprepared and momentarily outnumbered four to five. More soldiers can be seen running up to assist them from behind. Though the front four are lacking a fifth soldier, they have the advantage because the aulete is there to bring the formation back together. An amphora from ca. 540-530 B. C. depicts H
Woodwind instruments are a family of musical instruments within the more general category of wind instruments. There are two main types of woodwind instruments: reed instruments. What differentiates these instruments from other wind instruments is the way in which they produce their sound. All woodwinds produce sound by splitting an exhaled air stream on a sharp edge, such as a reed or a fipple. A woodwind may be made of any material, not just wood. Common examples include brass, cane, as well as other metals such as gold and platinum. Woodwinds are made out of earthen materials ocarinas. Common examples include flute, clarinet and saxophone. Flutes produce sound by directing a focused stream of air below the edge of a hole in a cylindrical tube; the flute family can be divided into two sub-families: closed flutes. To produce a sound with an open flute, the player is required to blow a stream of air across a sharp edge that splits the airstream; this split airstream acts upon the air column contained within the flute's hollow causing it to vibrate and produce sound.
Examples of open flutes are the transverse flute and shakuhachi. Ancient flutes of this variety were made from tubular sections of plants such as grasses and hollowed-out tree branches. Flutes were made of metals such as tin, copper, or bronze. Modern concert flutes are made of high-grade metal alloys containing nickel, copper, or gold. To produce a sound with a closed flute, the player is required to blow air into a duct; this duct acts as a channel bringing the air to a sharp edge. As with the open flutes, the air is split. Examples of this type of flute include the recorder and organ pipes. Reed instruments produce sound by focusing air into a mouthpiece which causes a reed, or reeds, to vibrate. Similar to flutes, Reed pipes are further divided into two types: single reed and double reed. Single-reed woodwinds produce sound by placing a reed onto the opening of a mouthpiece; when air is forced between the reed and the mouthpiece, the reed causes the air column in the instrument to vibrate and produce its unique sound.
Single reed instruments include the clarinet and others such as the chalumeau. Double-reed instruments use two cut, small pieces of cane bound together at the base; this form of sound production has been estimated to have originated in the middle to late Neolithic period. The finished, bound reed is inserted into the instrument and vibrates as air is forced between the two pieces; this family of reed pipes is subdivided further into another two sub-families: exposed double reed, capped double reed instruments. Exposed double-reed instruments are played by having the double reed directly between the player's lips; this family includes instruments such as the oboe, cor anglais and bassoon, many types of shawms throughout the world. On the other hand, Capped double-reed instruments have the double reed covered by a cap; the player blows through a hole in this cap that directs the air through the reeds. This family includes the crumhorn. Bagpipes are unique reed pipe instruments since they use two or more single reeds.
However, bagpipes are functionally the same as a capped double reed instruments since the reeds are never in direct contact with player's lips. Free reed aerophone instruments are unique since sound is produced by'free reeds' – small metal tongues arranged in rows within a metal or wooden frame; the airflow necessary for the instruments sound is generated either by a player's breath, or by bellows. The modern orchestra's woodwind section includes: flutes, oboes and bassoons; the piccolo, cor anglais, bass clarinet, E-flat clarinet, contrabassoon are used supplementary woodwind instruments. The section may on occasion be expanded by the addition of saxophone; the concert band's woodwind section is much larger and more diverse than the orchestra's. The concert band's woodwind section includes piccolos, oboes, B♭ clarinets, bass clarinets, alto saxophones, tenor saxophones, baritone saxophones; the cor anglais, E♭ clarinet, alto clarinet, contra-alto clarinet, contrabass clarinet and soprano saxophone are used, but not as as the other woodwinds.
Brass instrument Musical instrument Wind instrument Percussion instrument How do Woodwind Instruments work Woodwind Fingering Chart Woodwind Reference – ClassicalMusicHomepage.com
Balaban, or balaman is cylindrical-bore, double-reed wind instrument about 35 centimetres long with eight finger holes and one thumb hole. Balaban, one of the ancient wind instruments, is played in all corners of Azerbaijan; this instrument is played in the Republic of Azerbaijan. Balaban can be made of other harder woods, such as walnut; the bore through the instrument is about 1.5 centimetres in diameter. The double reed is pressed flat at one end; the performer uses air stored in his cheeks to keep playing the balaban while he inhales air into his lungs. This “circular” breathing technique is used with all the double-reed instruments in the Middle East. Balaban, called yasti balaban for flat mouthpiece and soft sound, consists of body made of apricot tree, cane and cover. Body has 1 on the back in the middle of 1st and 2nd holes on the surface, it consists of a stem, a reed, a regulator, a cap. The stem of the balaban, or govda, is a 280–320 millimetres cylindrical tube made of apricot wood; the process of carving a balaban stem is called balaban chakma.
The upper end of the stem is given a round shape. The bore is 10 millimetres in diameter. Eight holes or "tones" constituting a "sound tone" are made on the obverse and another one is made on the bottom side, opposite of the interval between the first and the second holes of the sas pardasi. Sometimes an additional hole called nizam pardasi is made on the lower end of the bottom side to ensure good timbre; the holes made on the stem are classified as follows: The reed made of club-rush that grows in an arid area is inserted into the upper end. It takes the shape of a double reed, it is tied to a 60 millimetres long and 10 millimetres wide regulator made of a willow or grape branch cut lengthways. The reed is fixed by a collar-like regulator on one side and a 7–12 millimetres pivot on the other side; the cap made of willow, cornel or mulberry is put on the reed to prevent it from damage. It is tied to the regulator in order not to be lost. On solemn occasions such as weddings and holiday ceremonies, a balaban-player is accompanied by a percussionist.
A traditional Azeri musical group consisting of two balaban-players and a percussionist is called balabanchilar dastasi. The short selection of Azerbaijani mugham played in balaban, national wind instrument was included on the Voyager Golden Record, attached to the Voyager spacecraft as representing world music, included among many cultural achievements of humanity, it was used in pastoral songs and funeral music. According to Huseyngulu Sarabski, hunters played the balaban to attract quails. Certain types of the balaban are used in ashik music. Kamil Jalilov's recording of the song with balaban was included on the Voyager Golden Record, attached to the Voyager spacecraft as representing mugham, only Azerbaijani song included among many cultural achievements of humanity. Ch. Albright. BĀLĀBĀN. Iranica. Balaban and Mey
The shawm is a conical bore, double-reed woodwind instrument made in Europe from the 12th century to the present day. It achieved its peak of popularity during the medieval and Renaissance periods, after which it was eclipsed by the oboe family of descendant instruments in classical music, it is to have come to Western Europe from the Eastern Mediterranean around the time of the Crusades. Double reed instruments similar to the shawm were long present in Southern Europe and the East, for instance the Ancient Greek, Byzantine, the Persian sorna, the Armenian duduk; the body of the shawm is turned from a single piece of wood, terminates in a flared bell somewhat like that of a trumpet. Beginning in the 16th century, shawms were made in several sizes, from sopranino to great bass, four and five-part music could be played by a consort consisting of shawms. All shawms have at least one key allowing a downward extension of the compass; the bassoon-like double reed, made from the same Arundo donax cane used for oboes and bassoons, is inserted directly into a socket at the top of the instrument, or in the larger types, on the end of a metal tube called the bocal.
The pirouette, a small wooden attachment with a cavity in the center resembling a thimble, surrounds the lower part of the reed—this provides support for the lips and embouchure. Since only a short portion of the reed protrudes past the pirouette, the player has only limited contact with the reed, therefore limited control of dynamics; the shawm’s conical bore and flaring bell, combined with the style of playing dictated by the use of a pirouette, gives the instrument a piercing, trumpet-like sound, well-suited for outdoor performances. In English the name only first appears in the 14th century. There were three main variant forms, schallemele and scalmuse, each derived from a corresponding variant in Old French: chalemel and chalemeaux, each in turn derived from the Latin calamus, or its Vulgar Latin diminutive form, calamellus; the early plural forms were mistaken for a singular, new plurals were formed from them. The reduction in the 15th and 16th centuries to a single syllable in forms such as schalme, shawme, "shawm", was due to this confusion of plural and singular forms.
In German the shawm is called Schalmei This is borne out by the similar names of many folk shawms used as traditional instruments in various European nations: in Spain, many traditional shawms with different names can be found, such as the Castilian and Leonese dulzaina. In Portugal there is an instrument called charamela. However, it is possible that the name comes from the Arabic salamiya, a traditional oboe from Egypt, as the European shawm seems to have been developed from similar instruments brought to Europe from the Near East during the time of the Crusades; this Arabic name is itself linguistically related to many other Eastern names for the instrument: the Arabic zamr, the Turkish zūrnā, the Persian surnāy, the Chinese suona, the Javanese saruni, the Hindu sahanai or sanayi. Instruments resembling the medieval shawm can still be heard in many countries today, played by street musicians or military bands; the latter use would have been familiar to crusaders, who had to face massed bands of Saracen shawms and nakers, used as a psychological weapon.
It must have had a profound effect, as the shawm was adopted by Europeans, for dancing as well as for military purposes. The standard outdoor dance band in the fifteenth century consisted of a slide trumpet playing popular melodies, while two shawms improvised countermelodies over it. In many Asian countries, shawm technique includes circular breathing allowing continuous playing without pauses for air. By the early 16th century, the shawm had undergone considerable development; the harsh tonality of the medieval shawm had been modulated somewhat by a narrowing of the bore and a reduction in the size of the fingerholes. This extended the range, enabling the performer to play the notes in the second octave. Larger sizes of shawm were built, down to the great bass in B♭, two octaves and a major third below the soprano in D. However, the larger sizes were unwieldy, which made them somewhat rare; the smaller sizes of shawm, chiefly the soprano and sometimes the tenor, were more coupled with the Renaissance trombone, or sackbut, the majestic sound of this ensemble was much in demand by civic authorities.
The shawm became standard equipment for town bands, or waits, who were required to herald the start of municipal functions and signal the major times of day. The shawm became so associated with the town waits that it was known as the wait-pipe; the shawm was reserved exclusively for outdoor performance—for softer, indoor music, other instruments such as the crumhorn and cornamuse were preferred. These were double reed instruments fitted with a capsule