The Stringed Instrument Database The Stringed Instrument Database: J-K

J



Jakhay


Alternative names: Jakhe, Chakhe, Jakae, Jakay, Takhe, Charakhe
Origin: Thailand
Tuning:
Strings/Courses: 3/3
Further notes: 2 Silk or nylon strings, 1 brass.
Scale Length: 700mm



Jarana Huasteca


Alternative names: Jaranita
Origin: Mexico
Tuning: G3, B3, D4, F#4, A4
Strings/Courses: 5/5
Further notes: Nylon strings.
Scale Length: Around 400mm



Jarana Jarocha


Alternative names: Jarana de son Jarocha, Jarana Veracruzana. Often just called Jarana, as it is the most common variety.
Origin: Mexico
Tuning: G3, C4 C4, E4 E3, A3 A3, G3 (most common) or A3, D4 D4, G3 G4, B3 B3, E4 or D4, G4 G3, B3 B3, E4 E4, C4
Strings/Courses: Usually 8/5, but sometimes 10/5 (all courses doubled) or 6/5 (just the middle course doubled).
Further notes: Nylon strings. Comes in different sizes. From smallest to largest: chaquiste/chakiste, mosquito/moskito, primera, segunda and tercera.
Scale Length: Less than 290-320mm for the chaquiste/chakiste, 320-340mm for the mosquito/moskito, 380-400mm for the primera, around 500mm for the segunda and 580mm for the tercera.



Jarana Jarocha Requinto


Alternative names: Jarocha Requinto, Requinto Jarocha, Guitarra De Son.
Origin: Mexico
Tuning: G2, A2, D2, G3 or C2, D2, G2, C3 or C2, D2, G3, C3 or A2, D3, G3, C3 for 4 stringed versions. E2, A2, D3, G3, C3 for 5 stringed versions.
Strings/Courses: 4/4 or 5/5
Further notes: Nylon strings.
Scale Length: 550mm



Jarana Leona


Alternative names:
Origin: Mexico
Tuning: G2, A2, D3, G3.
Strings/Courses: 4/4
Further notes: Nylon strings.
Scale Length: 680mm



Jouhikko


Alternative names: Jouhikannel, Jouhikantele
Origin: Finland, 14th century, but died out in the 20th century and has only recently been revived.
Tuning: D, A, E
Strings/Courses: 3/3
Further notes: Strings are made of horse hair.
Scale Length: Made by individual luthiers, therefore no standard.



Junga


Alternative names: Jungga
Origin: South-east Indonesia.
Tuning:
Strings/Courses: 2/2
Further notes:
Scale Length: Around 350mm, but not standard.


K





Kabosy


Alternative names: Kabosi, Mandoliny, Mandoly
Origin: Madagascar
Tuning: No standard tuning, but a commong one is G2, G3, B3 B3, D4 D4
Strings/Courses: 6/6, 6/4 or 4/4.
Further notes: Often not all the frets go across the whole fretboard. The Kabosy is usually box shaped but other shapes exist. The strings are made from nylon fishing line or bicycle brake wire.
Scale Length: There is no accepted standard due to the wide variety of sizes, and the fact they are locally made by individual luthiers.



Kamancheh


Alternative names: Kamanche, Kamancha, Kamanjah.
Origin: Iran.
Tuning: No fixed pitch, but usually the second string is tuned a fourth above the first, and the third a fifth above the second (and an octave above the first).
Strings/Courses: 4/4 or 3/3
Further notes: It is now (as well as Iran) played in Turkey, Egypt, Azerbaijan and elsewhere. There are many different varieties as a result.
Scale Length: 320-400mm



Kamayacha


Alternative names: Kamaicha
Origin: Rajasthan, India.
Tuning:
Strings/Courses:
Further notes:
Scale Length:



Kelutviaq


Alternative names: Qelutviaq
Origin: Played by the Yupik eskimo people in Alaska, USA.
Tuning:
Strings/Courses: Usually 1/1, but can also be 2/1 or 2/2
Further notes: Both plucked and bowed.
Scale Length:



Kemenche


Alternative names: Kemence, Black Sea Lyra, Pontic Lyra, Qamani.
Origin:
Tuning:
Strings/Courses: 4/4 or 3/3
Further notes: It is now (as well as Iran) played in Turkey, Egypt, Azerbaijan and elsewhere. There are many different varieties as a result.
Scale Length: 320-400mm


Keroncong


- See Cak and Cuk


Khonkhota


Alternative names: Qonqhota, Qonqhota, Jitarron, Ponputu, Mokholos, Machus.
Origin: Potosi, Southern Bolivia.
Tuning: G4 G3, C4, D4 D3, A3, D4 D4.
Strings/Courses: Usually 8/5 but sometimes 7/5, 9/5, 10/5 or 11/5.
Further notes: The strings are either all steel, or a mix of steel and nylon.
Scale Length: Usually between 580-680mm, although quite a wide variation. 650mm is common.



Khushtar


Alternative names:
Origin: Uyghur Region, Western China.
Tuning: G, D, A, E
Strings/Courses: 4/4
Further notes:
Scale Length:



Kibangala


Alternative names: Gaboussi, Gabusi, Quanbus, Gabbus.
Origin: Originally from Eastern Africa or the Middle East. Now played throughout Africa and in Indonesia and Malaysia.
Tuning: D2, G3, B3 B3, D3 D3
Strings/Courses: 6/4 or 7/4
Further notes:
Scale Length: 480-600mm.


Kirki


- See Charango


Kobza


Alternative names: Kobsa, Koboz, Cobza
Origin: Romania and Hungary.
Tuning: D D, A A, D D, G G.
Strings/Courses: Usually 8/4, but sometimes 10/4 or 10/5.
Further notes: Usually steel strings, but sometimes nylon. Nylon strings are more common in Hungary than Romania.
Scale Length: 480mm



Kobza (Ukrainian)


Alternative names:
Origin: Ukraine.
Tuning: G3, D4, A4, E5 for 4 stringed versions (the same as a mandolin). E2, A2, D3, G3, B3, E4 for 6 stringed versions (the same as a guitar). E3 E2, A3 A2, D4 D3, G4 G3, B3 B3, E4 E4 for 12 stringed versions (the same as a 12-string guitar).
Strings/Courses: Usually 4/4, but sometimes 6/6 or 12/6
Further notes: Steel strings.
Scale Length:



Kokyu


Alternative names: Kucho, Hana
Origin: Japan.
Tuning: D, G, C.
Strings/Courses: 4/4 or 3/3
Further notes: Built like the Shamisen, but smaller and with a spike at the bottom. Unlike the Shamisen, it is played with a bow. Silk strings.
Scale Length:



Komuz


Alternative names: Qomuz, Gopuz, Kopuz, Kopus, Gomuz
Origin: Kyrgyzstan. Believed to date back to the 4th century.
Tuning: A, E, A
Strings/Courses: 3/3
Further notes: Nylon strings or fishing wire.
Scale Length:



Kon


Alternative names: Konde, Kono
Origin: Southern Sudan.
Tuning: No absolute pitch, but the two strings are tuned a minor third apart.
Strings/Courses: 2/2
Further notes: Nylon strings.
Scale Length:


Kontra


- See Bugarija


Kozobas


Alternative names:
Origin: Western Ukraine, 20th century.
Tuning:
Strings/Courses: Usually 2/2 but sometimes 3/3.
Further notes:
Scale Length:



K'Ni


Alternative names: Koni, Khoni
Origin: Northern Vietnam.
Tuning:
Strings/Courses: 2/2
Further notes: Instead of a soundbox, the instrument has a bamboo disc attached. This is held in the player's mouth, so their mouth is the soundbox.
Scale Length:



Kudyapi


Alternative names: Kudlung, Kusyapi
Origin: Philippines.
Tuning:
Strings/Courses: 2/2
Further notes:
Scale Length: 500-850mm



Kwitra


Alternative names: Kouitra, Quitra, Quwaytara.
Origin: Algeria.
Tuning: G3 G3, E4 E4, A3 A3, D4 D4.
Strings/Courses: 8/4
Further notes: Nylon or gut strings.
Scale Length: 640mm



Kyl Kiak


Alternative names:
Origin: Kyrgyzstan
Tuning:
Strings/Courses: 2/2
Further notes: Strings made of horse hair.
Scale Length: 500-600mm