Academic journal article Yearbook for Traditional Music

Musique Du Kirghizistan / Music of Kyrgyzstan

Academic journal article Yearbook for Traditional Music

Musique Du Kirghizistan / Music of Kyrgyzstan

Article excerpt

Musique du Kirghizistan / Music of Kyrgyzstan. 2005. INEDIT / Maison des Cultures du Monde W 260122. Recorded by Jean During. Annotated by Jean During and Razia Syrdybaeva. 27 pp. of notes in French and English. English translation by Frank Kane. 2 colour, 3 b/w photographs, 1 map. 1 compact disc, 24 tracks (72:27).

Although the Kyrgyz Republic is landlocked by Kazakhstan, China, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan, Jean During notes that "the Kyrgyz have kept their ancient Turkic musical forms which, surprisingly, are closer to the intonations of Northern Europe than to those of neighboring countries" (p. 17). Their inclination towards polyphony connects them to the musical area north of the silk roads, an area encompassing Tatarstan, Russia, Central Europe, Scandinavia, and Scotland.

The disc includes examples of common Kyrgyz instruments: komuz (three-stringed plucked lute), kyal (two-stringed bowed lute), temir komuz (metal jew's harp), jigach ooz komuz (wooden jew's harp), and chopo choor (clay ocarina). Twenty tracks are küü (narrative instrumental pieces); the remaining four are songs accompanied by the komuz. One of the highlights of the disc is Ruslan Jumabaev's performance of "Toguz kayryk" (Nine stones; track 18), a popular küü that requires the performer to employ the entire technical range of komuz playing including distinct fingerings for each hand, different ways of holding the instrument, top to bottom strikes, hand inversions, and arm movements. …

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