423.121.22 End blown labrosones with curved or folded tubes with mouthpiece

Trumpet (kombu) in three parts with string attached to the bell part.

The loud sound of the kombu horn serves to embellish and to prolong the beat of the drums in the pancavadyam, a Keralan Hindu temple ensemble of drums and cymbals. Since the kombu is played rhythmically in the pancavadyam, musicians in Kerala describe it as 'thala vadyam', a percussion instrument. The kombu also plays in other Keralan instrumental ensembles, the kombu pattu and centa melam. The musician holds the horn with the bell pointing over his right shoulder. The right hand grasps the tube below the mouthpiece, the left hand holds it near the joint of the lower and middle sections. Three tones can be played on the kombu, Sa, Pa, and high Sa - in Western solfège low doh, soh the fifth above, and doh the octave above the lowest note. These are the second, third and fourth harmonics in the harmonic series.

Collection Information

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