Books + CDs
The lute Dan Tam
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* Sample (MP3, 577 KB) *
picture clearly shows the relation to equal Asian lutes like the
Chinese San Xian or the famous Japanese Shamisen.
The three strings are tuned in a fifth/fourth and an octave, and
most playing traditions play the melodies on the highest string.
The Dan Tam is played with a fingerpluck made of stone, jade or metal.
Sometimes a normal plectrum is used to pluck the strings,
as well as the fingers alone or even a Japanese "bachi".
The fretless long neck provides various sliding, bending and other
ornamentation techniques for the left hand, while the right hand
sometimes uses tremoli and rapid repetitions.
The body of the instrument reminds us of the idea of a possible mixture
between a long neck and a drum in ancient times, resulting in the first
long neck lutes as we can find it described for the Chinese Pipa lute.
The Nguyet is getting more and more famous and will not take long to
enter the Vietnamese pop music market, like it happened with the
The very rhythmical playing of the short-in-sound notes is also
attractive to modern rock bands.