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 Kacapi Zither like Sundanise

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PostSubyek: Kacapi Zither like Sundanise   Wed Jul 18, 2007 6:14 am

Kacapi
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Kacapi is a zither-like Sundanese musical instrument played as the main accompanying instrument in the Tembang Sunda or Kacapi Suling genre, or an additional instrument in Gamelan Degung performance.





Form

According to its form or physical appearance, there are two kinds of kacapis:

1. Kacapi Parahu (=Boat Kacapi) or Kacapi Gelung ; and
2. Kacapi Siter

Kacapi Parahu is a resonance box with uncovered underside to allow the sound out. The sides of this kind of kacapi is taper inward from top to bottom, which gives the instrument a boat-like shape. In ancient time, it was made directly from solid wood by perforating it.

Kacapi siter is a plan-parallel resonance box. Similar to kacapi parahu, its hole is located at the bottom. The upper and bottom sides of it form an almost-trapesium shape.

For both kinds of kacapi, each string is affixed to a small screw or peg on the top right hand side of the box. They can be tuned in different system: pelog, sorog/madenda, or slendro.

Nowadays, the resonance box of kacapi is made by glueing six wood-plates side by side.

Functions

According to its functions in a music accompaniment, kacapi is played as:

1. Kacapi Indung (=mother kacapi); and
2. Kacapi Anak (=child kacapi) or Kacapi Rincik

Kacapi indung leads the accompaniment by giving intros, bridges, and interludes, as well as determining the tempo. For this purpose, a large kacapi with 18 or 20 strings is used. Listen to an excerpt from a kacapi indung. (help·info)

Kacapi rincik riches the accompaniment by filling in inter note spaces with higher frequencies, especially in fixed metered songs like in Kacapi Suling or Sekar Panambih. For this purpose, a smaller kacapi with ~15 strings is used. Listen to an excerpt from a kacapi indung and rincik. (help·info)

Tuning and Notation

Kacapi uses degung notation. It is a subset of pelog 7 tone system. See following table.
Sundanese Degung- - - - - -Javanese Pelog 7
1 (da)- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -6
2 (mi)- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -5
3 (na)- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -3
4 (ti)- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2
5 (la)- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1

Note range, from lowest frequency to highest frequency is:
Note range (Listen) (help·info)

Kacapi is tuned to match the 60 cm length suling tones. With this length, approximation for the tuning compared to western scale is:
Tuning of kacapi
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Kacapi Zither like Sundanise
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