The Atlas of Plucked Instruments
December 29, 2006 1:09 AM   Subscribe

The bouzouki, the saz, chonguri and sarod, the veena and the shamisen, the cuatro and the oud. These and many hundreds more are to be found at the Atlas of Plucked Instruments. Plenty of guitars, banjos and mandolins as well.
posted by flapjax at midnite (12 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
posted by jonson at 1:18 AM on December 29, 2006 [1 favorite]


Sir, your callous and irreverent comment has struck at the very soul of the Greek people. No mousaka for you tonight!

Oh, and from the "miscellaneous" page of the Atlas, scroll down to what appears to be quonsar playing a quintuple-neck guitar in front of a stack of Marshalls.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 1:38 AM on December 29, 2006


Oh, heaven forbid. I am one who delights in all manifestations of the Terpsichorean muse.
posted by three blind mice at 1:39 AM on December 29, 2006

Plucking excellent.
posted by Abiezer at 2:03 AM on December 29, 2006

The 'charango' is wild, tiny body and huge headstock. And you can get one where the body is (was) an armadillo. Really looks like a mutant. No, not you.
posted by toma at 3:02 AM on December 29, 2006

Nice. Too many pages are still under construction, which is only exacerbated by the coolness of what's already there.
posted by OmieWise at 6:10 AM on December 29, 2006

flapjax, you've made my day. Years ago I kinda inherited a Zas and I've been trying to remember the name of the damn thing. All this time I thought it was from Thailand, which explains why I could never find it googling. Thx a lot m8.
posted by micayetoca at 11:18 AM on December 29, 2006

Wonderful post flapjax at midnite. Likeable site. I'm crazy about the music of plucked/stringed instruments. Love that plucking sound.

Wish there were sound samples for the instruments and traditional styles played, as well as links to CD examples of the music. Like sarod, banjo, harp, flamenco guitar, bouzouki etc.

This guitar is insane.

There's a franchise of chicken restaurants in nyc, called Pluck U.
posted by nickyskye at 1:42 PM on December 29, 2006

Terrific post, flapjax. A great resource. I love looking at stringed instruments even though I can't play any of them at all (I'm much better at pounding on things with sticks).

At the end of November I went on tour for a week (ME, NY, Toronto, MI, VT) with a six-piece improv band that carted along several hundred instruments (including all the rattles, shakers, bells and whistles, etc.), and the one that got the most attention was new to me: the baglama (from Greece). People loved it.

nickyskye: more info about Pat Metheny's 'insane' Pikasso guitar is found here. I first read about it in Tim Brookes’s interesting history/memoir Guitar.
posted by LeLiLo at 12:47 AM on December 30, 2006

lelilo, your link points to bouzouki rather than baglama for some reason, baglama is much smaller than bouzouki, almost the length of a grown person's arm. I am not surprised that baglama got such an attention in your tour. Its high pitched and resonant sound makes excellent accompaniment for sad songs about love, hopelessness, injustice and destitution. Just a stroke on the damn thing, can make you feel all the misery the lyrics will subsequently unleash on you...
posted by carmina at 10:07 PM on December 30, 2006

Thanks lelilo. That is one straaaange guitar.

Sound clip of virtual baglama. And a baglama used in Damian Draghici's wonderful music.
posted by nickyskye at 11:01 PM on December 30, 2006

lelilo, your link points to bouzouki rather than baglama for some reason

Sorry, carmina, that site doesn't link to specific instruments; that link goes to all four of the plucked examples from Greece. I should have said that the baglama is the third one down.
posted by LeLiLo at 10:39 PM on January 2, 2007

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