Bowed > Chordophone.
Nepal > South Asia.
C G c g.
Ian MacKenzie, Nepal.
The sarinda is a chordophone of the bowed instrument
family. In Nepal the sarinda is played amongst the gaine cast of the
Nawari people. The role of the gaine cast in Newari culture they are
traditionally“bards and story tellers”. The gaine musicians travel from
village to village, they play at various festivals to busking on the
street. The sarinda is played upright by resting upon the left knee, the
right hand controls the bow. Occasionally the sympathetic strings are
plucked with the left hand during performance. Sarinda players often come
from a cast called the Gaine who are literally wandering bards that
dispense the news and gossip of their local communities. The Nepalese
sarinda is closely related to the kamaicha of Rajasthan, such a conclusion
could be explained by the migration routes of the peoples who live there.
Numerous different varieties of these musical
instruments are found in this region of South Asia due in large part to
migration, distribution and geography. In Afghanistan one would encounter
a sarinda with multiple sympathetic strings. In Baluchistan one would
encounter the Qeycheck or Sorud the name qeycheck applies to the
instrument on the Iranian side of the boarder and the name Sorud applies
of the same instrument on the Pakistani side of the boarder. In the state
of Gujarat there are related instruments that are direct descendants of
the sarinda that bear the same name.
The Sarinda is skull shaped in its design, this
design feature allows for the sound to travel through the animal hide
membrane and behave as the sound chamber. The first two strings of the
sarinda are often of "packaging wire", or "thin steel wire" with the
desired tension for the instrument. The other two strings are sympathetic
or "drone" strings, the sometimes though the first and second strings are
played. A custom hand made bow is also made for this instrument, although
a violin bow can be used as a suited alternative. The neck of the sarinda
is quite thick and short.