String Instruments

Introduction to the Kanun (Qanun): The Instrument of the Middle East


The Kanun is a traditional stringed musical instrument that is widely known and played in the Middle East. The instrument is popular for its sweet, soulful sound and versatility, making it a staple in many cultural traditions. In this blog post, we will delve deeper into the rich history and significance of the Kanun.

Origins of the Kanun and Construction and Design

The Kanun is believed to have originated from ancient Greece and Rome before it was adopted by the Arab world. The word ‘Kanun’ is derived from the Arabic word ‘Qanun, which means a law or rule. The instrument has been used for centuries across various Middle Eastern cultures and was particularly used by professional musicians in the Ottoman Empire.

The Kanun is made up of a wooden trapezoidal body, a flat soundboard, and a bridge made of bone. It has 26 to 72 strings that are struck with wooden mallets, producing a range of pitches. It is said that the Kanun’s sound mimics the human voice, making it ideal for expressing emotion in Middle Eastern music.

Significance in Music

The Kanun is a prominent instrument in Middle Eastern music and is used in various genres such as classical, folk, and contemporary music. In classical music, the Kanun is used in conjunction with the oud and the ney to produce a distinctive sound that is often associated with Middle Eastern music. It is also significant in folk music as it is used to play traditional songs that have been passed down from generation to generation.

Boma Music and the Kanun

At Boma Music, we recognize the importance of the Kanun in Middle Eastern music and culture. Our team of skilled musicians have incorporated the Kanun into their performances, producing a unique and dynamic sound that is sure to captivate any audience. We offer a wide range of Kanun music, from traditional to contemporary, ensuring that we cater to all tastes and preferences.

In conclusion, the Kanun is a significant and cherished instrument in Middle Eastern music and culture. Its origins, construction, and design all contribute to the beauty and versatility of the instrument. At Boma Music, we celebrate the Kanun and its rich history by incorporating it into our music and performances, ensuring that it continues to be a vital part of Middle Eastern music for years to come.

You may also be interested in: Kanun

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *