Dan Bau is a Vietnamese monokord, a single-stringed zither. Its resonance box is made of wood and is about a meter long, four inches wide and four inches deep.

The single string is made of steel and is fixed between the resonance box and a thin and flexible handle. With this, one can vary the string tension. Where the string meets the handle is a small kalebassformad bowl of wood. This worked initially as an amplifier but is now almost an ornament, because you are now using electric amplifier.

The musician playing the string with a pick. With hand, press lightly on the string while the special places to make a harmonic emerges. Then releasing the string so that the harmonic sounds on. Seven such sites along the string is used along the string. You will receive eight different tones within a range of three octaves. The intermediate tones you get by controlling through the handle.

The instrument provides great opportunities for glissando and similar effects. This and the electric amplification makes the sound reminds me a lot of electric guitar. Often playing multiple notes in succession on the same snap just by using the handle.

Before the 1900s, Dan Bau was used mainly by the blind beggar. It is now used in art music and opera and is now perceived as something of a national symbol.


from Some of the instruments in the recordings, released February 18, 1965


all rights reserved



Ekiwojjolo Uppsala, Sweden

Ekiwojjolo was founded in 2010 by Benil Steimer and since 2015, he plays together with Peter Nylund.

The music is DIY Lo-Fi recorded and is focusing on psychedelic, kraut and avantgarde.

Ekiwojjolo (Luganda) means butterfly and pronounced "edjiwoodjoloo".
... more

contact / help

Contact Ekiwojjolo