In accordance to El-Farabie, the Oud dates back to the days of Lamech a sixthgeneration
descendant of Adam. Lamech was known as the “Father of the Oud
players”. The first look of the Oud was 3000 BC. The desecrated
skeleton suggested the sort of the Oud. Oud is identified as the 1st stringed
instrument in heritage.
The oldest pictorial document of the Oud dates back to the Uruk interval in Southern
Mesopotamia (Iraq), more than 5000 a long time ago on a cylinder seal acquired by Dr.
Dominique Collon and the seal is presently housed at the British Museum..
As the Oud becomes the quintessence of earlier chordophones, it also
constitutes their useful synthesis. In the ninth century, Miwardi, the jurist of
Baghdad, extolled its use in managing illness, such as King David did by means of his
existence with his Oud. The Oud was in the arms of Egyptians and Iraqis when the
Israelites came out of Egypt. They took the Oud with them to the Holy Land. The
Oud even now maintains its Egyptian and Iraqi attributes and musical stylings. The Oud
was played in sacred locations this kind of as the temples of Egypt.
In the first hundreds of years of Arabian civilization, the oud had 4 programs (one particular
string per training course – double-strings arrived later on) only, tuned in successive
fourths. These had been named (for the lowest in pitch) the Bamm, then came
(increased to highest in pitch) the Mathnā, the Mathlath and the Zīr. A fifth
string (greatest in pitch, lowest in its positioning in relation to other strings),
known as ḥād ("sharp"), was sometimes extra for theoretical functions,
typically to complement the double octave.
The neck, joined to the body, is described as 'unq ('neck') in classical writings
and the raqba ('neck') or zand ('wrist') right now. It extends the higher portion of the
instrument by some 20 cm and is inserted into the soundbox up to the
soundhole. This duration, which has been much mentioned, is critical in the
instrument's construction, determining the amount and spot of the intervals
and hence affecting the modes. In early 19th-century Egypt, Villoteau gave the
measurement as 22.4 cm a century later on, also in Egypt, Kamil al-Khula'i gave it
as 19.5 cm. In modern Egypt, the duration of the neck may range between 18
and twenty.five can. It is standardized as 20 cm in Syria, but a size of 24.5 cm could
be discovered on Moroccan types, he 'ud 'arbi (Arab 'ud). If the 'ud 'arbi is the
descendant of an archaic design of Andalusian provenance, the upper element of the
instrument could have become shorter. The neck rarely has
four. Types of the 'ud
(i) Two-string 'ud:The thesis of its existence has been upheld by musicologists
from Europe and Iran it envisages the archaic 'ud as a counterpart of the tanbur,
getting two strings like that instrument. The argument rests on the names of the
strings, two of which are Iranian phrases (bamm and zir) and two other folks of Arab
origin (mathna and mathlath). There is no circumstantial documentary proof
to support this hypothesis.
(ii) 4-program 'ud: The Arabian 'ud qadim (historic lute), in specific, invited
cosmological speculation, linking the strings with the humours, the temperature,
the factors, the seasons, the cardinal details, the zodiac and the stars. The
strings may possibly be tuned bass to treble or treble to bass. Bass to treble tuning is
represented by al-Kindi (ninth century), who advocated tuning the lowest program
(bamm or 1st string) to the lowest singable pitch. Inserting the ring finger on a
mathematically established duration of this string, a single moves on to deduce the
pitch of the third open training course (mathna), then that of the 2nd (mathlath) and
lastly the fourth (zir). (This system is also utilized to the 5-system 'ud and is
nevertheless utilised as a tuning strategy, following the sequence 1-4-2-three-five or one-four-two-five-3.)
Adherents of the opposite faculty (Ikhwan al- Safa') tune from treble to bass. The
intention, inherited in part by the Turkish 'ud, entails pulling tough on the zir (higher)
string, so that as it techniques breaking-point it provides a obvious seem. 1 then
moves on to figure out the pitch of the next course (mathna), the 3rd
(mathlath) and lastly the fourth (bamm). These two educational institutions did not remain
fully different. But whichever treatment is utilised, both end up with tuning by
successive 4ths, each system being tuned a 4th above the reduced program
previous it. Musicologists, Jap as properly as Western, who consider to interpret the
pitch of these notes in European terms end up with different results.
Though the four-course 'ud survives in Morocco, as the 'ud 'arbi, the tuning
does not conform to the pitches inferred from classical treatises: a conflict
between oral and composed traditions. The Moroccan approach seems to be the
merchandise of a preceding system, the 'ud
ramal, which also comprised a sequence of 4ths: ramal (?e), hsin, (?a), maya (?
d'), raghul (?g'). This 'ud, like its Tunisian counterpart, may be variously tuned: a
function of these tunings is that they juxtapose the traditional 4ths with the octave
and often the fifth and 6th (D-d- G-c). The strings of the 'ud 'arbi are named
dhil, ramal, maya, hsin this terminology by no implies refers to a fixed pitch
standard such as educational and standardized tuition techniques would desire for.
At the time of al-Kindi, two of the classes were manufactured of intestine and two of silk. In the
tenth century silk grew to become predominant and some texts give the composition of
the twisted threads: bamm = sixty four threads, mathlath = 48, mathna = 36, zir = 27.
The figures for the reduce courses of the 'ud correspond with people of two higher
strings of the Chinese qin, a reality that has led to speculation about the
partnership between Arab and Chinese civilizations by way of the Silk Route.
Another characteristic of the 4-course 'ud is that it is bichordal, getting double
programs. thirteenth-century iconography displays that it was already typical to pair the
strings at that time, most likely to boost sonority but also to permit the
improvement of a far more virtuoso type of overall performance.
(iii) 5-system 'ud: The addition in Andalusia of a fifth course has been
attributed to Ziryab (eighth-ninth century), although in theoretical writings it appeared
in Iraq with al-Kindi. (The addition of this further training course has a parallel in China.)
With Ziryab the fifth system, acknowledged as awsat ('intermediary'), a time period perpetuated
in the 'ud of San'a' named qanbus, is placed in between the second (mathna) and
third (mathlath) classes. With al-Kindi and his successors, it was to attain the
finish of the instrument and grow to be the string named hadd ('high') or the 2nd
zir. (In accordance to oral custom, to obtain an octave on the lengthy-necked lute
baglama, a reduced string ought to be placed in the center. This is completed when the neck
has number of frets.) As the ancient 'ud did not have a two-octave compass, the
appearance of the fifth string corresponded to the calls for of a new technique.
The four-training course 'ud had no need to run proper via the octave. Its repertory
was executed on a tetrachord or pentachord, transposable an octave higher.
With the five-training course model, the heptatonic system imposed comprehensive sequence of
octaves. The new lute was known as 'ud kamil ('perfect 'ud').
The 5-system 'ud is the most typical and most well-liked product amongst
performers. It has also been known as the 'ud misri (Egyptian) due to the fact of the finely
constructed instruments developed by the lute makers of Egypt, who export them
as far as Zanzibar. The folks of North Africa have included the dialectal title of
m'sharqi or mashriqi ('of the east'). The strategy of tuning it, really versatile in
the nineteenth century, is now turning out to be stabilized. These modifications are owing partly
to the crack-up of the Ottoman Empire, which has caused a rupture in between
Turkish and Arab cultures, and partly to the proliferation of training methods
endeavouring to impose a one kind of tuning, working from lower to high: yaka =
G 'ushayran = A duka = d nawa = g kardan = c'. However, there are variants
reintroducing tuning by 4ths. Therefore what is explained as 'Aleppo tuning' is made up
of: qarar busalik = E 'ushayran A duka =d nawa = g kardan = c'. This latter
construction is utilised in Turkey and Iraq. To solution the practical demands of
existing-day notation, a treble clef followed by the figure 8 is utilised. This
method has been significantly criticized by individuals in favour of utilizing the bass clef. The
tuning of the Turkish lute faithfully demonstrates the Arab kind but in reverse, studying in
descending purchase: gerdaniye = g' neva = d' dugah = a asiran = e kaba dugah =
d (this final, a lot more cellular pitch might similarly settle upon G. This outdated tuning
signifies the 'old school' (eski akort), and has now been replaced by an
ascending tuning - the 'new school' (yeni akort): A-B-e-a-d'-g'. However it is now
regarded incorrect in the Syro-Egyptian location, and consultant of the aged
Ottoman faculty, a tuning technique in ascending get survives in Iraq. It is made up
of: yaka = d 'ushayran = e duka = a nawa = d' kurdan = g'. The compass of the
bichordal 5-program 'ud is just in excess of two octaves in Turkey, it is 3 octaves
with the addition of a minimal training course. Arabian devices can obtain this by the
addition of a sixth course.
(iv) Six-program 'ud: Two types of 6-course 'ud exist: a single has six pairs of strings,
the other 5 pairs with an extra reduced string. The initial was identified by Jules
Rouanet in North Africa in direction of the finish of the previous century tuned inclusively it
has because disappeared other than in Libya,
in which it is even now produced but with different tuning. A similar instrument, found in Syria,
is tuned C- E-A-d-g-c'. The instrument with 5 double strings and a solitary reduced
a single, even so, is getting to be progressively usual from Istanbul to Baghdad. It has
turn out to be widespread to spot the added string after the highest (or chanterelle).
Its pitch is at the option of the player no rule is laid down. The existence of the
further string endows the instrument with a wider selection and enhanced ease of
taking part in, permitting the performer to run easily by means of a few octaves. The
sixth system is also coming to be employed as an intermittent drone, a new
(v) 7-training course 'ud: Seven-system designs, based on a intricate method of
tuning, had been found in Egypt and Lebanon in the 19th century but have not been
noticed since 1900. There is 1 exception: the Tunisian, Fawzl Sayib, is a living
master of the 7-training course instrument in the six pairs and a single lower arrangement.
A attribute of this 'ud was that it reversed the arrangement of strings, inserting first
the high and then the low strings on the neck from left to appropriate. According to
Mikha'il Mushaqa (1800-88), only 4 of the 7 programs have been played, the
cheapest course (jaharka) and the two optimum (busalik and nihuft) currently being unused in
The College of Oud On the web, is a platform constructed to educate the Oud through Skype by the
migrant Oud learn Ramy Adly, an Egyptian popular Oud Player, Ramy Adly is a
youthful master of the oud, the functional lute-like instrument that formed Arab
classical audio. Grounded in the principal Arab classical variations many thanks to arduous
education in his indigenous Egypt, Adly has branched out regularly, incorporating jazz
idioms and embracing conversations with other musicians close to the world.
Adly has executed around the Middle East, Europe, and North The usa. He has
composed music for theater and film, and collected a big amount of students
all around the globe, through an progressive on-line curriculum he produced, referred to as The
University of Oud Online. His sensitive, sturdy actively playing has been listened to from the
Library at Alexandria to American cathedrals and faculties.
Now based in Washington, DC, Adly carries on to grow the choices of his
instrument. “I want to provide the oud to the very same level as the guitar culturally, the
instrument that is just about everywhere and can do everything,” he exclaims.
For Adly, the oud has constantly been like a member of the loved ones. Virtually every person
in his loved ones performed the oud when he was developing up in Cairo, which includes uncles,
siblings, and his beloved grandfather, who gave him his 1st introduction to the
complicated, evocative instrument. “I grew up listening to the oud,” he recollects.
Listening is a single thing, and mastering the instrument one more. Adly plunged into
his review of this age-previous instrument at the Arab Oud House, with Iraqi oud
virtuoso Naseer Shamma. Adly located himself practicing for a dozen hours a working day,
and loving it. “It was a lot like the technique Paganini set up for his students,”
Adly describes. “You have to go by way of the hearth to be trained as a performer and
composer. I graduated as both composer and soloist.”