BiwaVocab for Satsuma-Biwa

Sound Information System by Junko Ueda

The Pluck & Strike Techniques

Below you will find various traditional techniques of plucking the strings and striking the body 'Hara-ita'. In the traditional repertoire the striking of the body is always in combination with plucking the strings, as you can see in the samples below.

Plucking the strings

Down stroke (Harai-Bachi)
To pluck with a down stroke.
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Up stroke (Kake-Bachi)
To pluck with an up stroke. Other names for this technique are Kaeshi-Bachi or Sukui.
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Double plucking
Double plucking. Usually described by 'Cha-Chan'.
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'Cutting sound' (Kiri-Bachi)
To press the string with the tip of the 'Bachi' before plucking, creating a stronger sound. In the notation this is indicated by the word 'Kiru'.
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Stopping the string (Keshi-Bachi)
To stop the sound of a vibrating string with the tip of the 'Bachi'. This is indicated by a little dash after the note.
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Plucking the strings and striking the body

Hitting accent (Uchi-Bachi)
An accentuated plucking of the string by striking the 'Hara-ita' simultaneously.
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Open strings played bidirectional
Plucking in two possible directions.
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Body hitting accent before plucking 1st string
To hit strongly the 'Hara-ita' just before plucking the first string in one movement.
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Body hitting accent before double plucking 4th string
To strike the 'Hara-ita' on a little distance, before double plucking the 4th string with an up-down stroke. Usually described by 'Sug-Gi-Chan'.
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