Kora – Africa

kora-africa

The Kora is an African harp that can have over twenty strings strung across its bridge.  The sound boxes of the Kora is made from half a calabash. The front of the kora usually has a cow skin draped tightly across it and can be painted for decoration.  It is called a double harp because the strings are divided into two groups across the bridge area. The sound of the kora is similar to that of a harp and played with the thumb and first finger of both hands.

 

The instrument is tuned by moving the leather rings up and down the large neck that comes out of the sound box area. The extra “tubes” that protrude from the front face area permit the musician to hold onto the instrument while seated.

 

Videos

Lamin Saho demonstrates how to play the kora.

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This video is of Mamadou Diabate, a griot (musical storyteller)

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