The bouzouki is a long-necked, pear-shaped string instrument that belongs to the lute family. I has a flat front often inlaid in mother-of-pearl. It is played using a plectrum to produce a sharp, clanging sound. It is a popular instrument for playing Greek music, Balkan folk music, and Irish music.
Types of Bouzoukis
Kinds of Bouzoukis include the following:
The trichordo bouzouki has three pairs of strings tuned to the keys of E-b-e or D-a-d.
It is made with three courses and fixed frets.
It is often used for rebetiko.
It can be used with sets of tuners.
The tetrachordo bouzouki has four pairs of metal strings tuned to the keys of C3-F3-A3-D4.
The first two pairs of strings are tuned to the same key, and they are usually played together for melodies.
The last two pairs are a combination of thin and thick strings tuned one octave apart, producing a full and rich sound. They are played to produce bass drones and chords.
The Irish bouzouki has four pairs of strings tuned to the keys of G-D-A-D or G-D-A-E.
It has a flat back.
It was developed in the 1960s when the traditional bouzouki was introduced to Irish music.
Since then, it has become an essential part of Irish trad scenes, often playing as an accompaniment.
Its electric version is called the e-zouk.
Choosing Bouzoukis (Buying tips)
Construction: For durability, choose a bouzouki made of solid maple wood over one made of mahogany, as it is more rigid and shows more form.