Type: Chordophones > Lutes.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 321.312.5
Specimen: 1 in collection.
Country: Kyrgyzstan, Xinjiang China [Turkestan].
Region: Central Asia.
Description: The komuz is a three stringed, fretless long necked lute. The back of the instrument is slightly vaulted at a minimum angle. It is related to the Azeri gopuz and Turkish kopuz. A unique feature in the tuning of the komuz is that the middle or centre string is tuned the highest strings the second and third strings are usually tuned either in fourths, fifths. During the soviet era, frets in the 12-tone chromatic scale were added.
|A D A|
|G D G|
|G D A|
|A D G|
|A D E|
|G G D|
Construction: Typically the komuz has a pear shaped body, it is carved from apricot or juniper wood, with a skin membrane or wooden sound table. The strings are traditionally of gut or nowadays nylon [or occasionally metal pass over a loose adjustable bridge to a tailpiece. Originally wooden tuning pegs would be used, although mechanical guitar tuners are common place.
Citations: Bibliography: Table 1. Komuz Tunings ~Kirgiz Instrumental Music by Mark Slobin, New York, Society for Asian Music 1969 Library of Congress No 70-93475 ; Websites: Komuz / Grove Music Online ;