Mouth organ

Orgue à bouche; Mundorgel; Órgano de boca.

Identical types: 20

Southeast Asian, usually hand-held, mouth-blown reed organ with multiple bamboo pipes, inserted in a base that serves as an "air distributor"; All types are usually played "uninterruptedly", i.e. in- and exhaling alternatingly, a technique also often used when playing the western Harmonica; Since this type of instrument is almost exclusively used among Animalist groups (Exception: Black & Yellow Lahu, Thailand; ➺ Naw_), it is connected with ritual laws and restrictions unknown in the western world, which mainly apply, however, to their ceremonial use; Sometimes a player accompanies himself whilst dancing solo; The instrument is often accompanied by some local type of percussion (drum, cymbals, gong); Occasionally, several instruments are played simultaneously (e.g. Naw_ of the Black Lahu, Thailand);
NB: ➺ Introduction to Mouth organs.

All types are provided with freely vibrating reeds; Each pipe is closed with a natural node at the top and has an open fingerhole (or thumbhole), which is closed to activate its reed and, accordingly, produce the required tone; In a few cases the lower (open) end of a pipe can be stopped with the right thumb, thus producing a different tone (➺ Naw_ of the Red and Black Lahu, Thailand).



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