Type: Huqins > Spike Fiddles > Bowed > Chordophones.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 321.312.7
Pa Yin: Silk 絲.
Tuning: C / G / D / A.
Inventor: Yang Yusen [1926-1980].
Region: Far East Asia.
Description: The gehu [in Chinese; 革胡 pinyin: géhú] is a Chinese instrument developed in the 20th century by the Chinese musician Yang Yusen [杨 雨 森, 1926–1980]. It is a hybrid of the Chinese Huqin family and cello. The four string of the gehu are tuned the same as the cello C / G / D / A. Unlike most of the bowed instruments in the huqin family. The bridge does not come into contact with the snakeskin which faces the other side.
A contrabass version of the gehu also exists; it functions as a double bass. Known as the diyingehu, digehu or beigehu [倍 革 胡]. By the late 20th century the gehu had become a rare instrument, even within China.
There is a tendency for the snakeskin to lose its tightness increases with humidity. Today, it is used mostly in Hong Kong and Taiwan, although even there, the cello is beginning to become a popular replacement for it.