The Stick is an electric stringed instrument invented by the Californian luthier Emmett Chapman in the beginning of 70s. Most of the people got to know the Stick thanks to Tony Levin, King Crimson and Peter Gabriel's Stick and bass player. Today there are many musicians all over the world playing the Stick in bands or as solo Stick players. The method of playing the Stick is known as the method of tapping: the sound is produced by tapping with the fingers against the strings. This way, the technique of the Stick is somehow similar to that of the piano, and just like with the piano, one can play the Stick with two hands simultaneously. On the other hand, the typical guitar techniques, such as bending, vibrato etc. are also possible on the Stick. Since one can play the Stick with two hands, and it can be used in stereo regime, the Stick may function as a guitar, as two guitars, as a bass, as two basses, as a bass and percussion (tapping can also produce percussive sound), as a guitar and a bass, and with today's effects or MIDI , as the entire orchestra. Each part of the Stick, bass part and melody part has its own independent pickup so each section can have its own amplification and/or be separately processed through effects.The sound of the Stick though, is not the same as that of the guitar or the bass. The Stick is well-known for its unique sound, thanks to its structure and playing technique.To learn more about the Stick, visit the Stick Enterprises official page here.
The Standard Stick is made of different kinds of wood, pressed bamboo, graphite or polycarbonate fiber. The Standard Stick has 10 strings, usually 5 bass strings, and 5 melody strings, though the Stick ia s custom-made instrument, therefore any configurations are possible.) In classical tuning, the melody strings descend (the highest string is at the bottom) and are tuned in fourths; the bass strings ascend (the highest string is on the top) and are tuned in fifths. As complicated as it may sound, such a reversed position of melody and bass strings is extremely comfortable and gives incredible possibilities. The Standard Stick is manufactured in different tunings.
Watch Irene Orleansky performing a solo piece on the standard polycarbonate Chapman Stick
With the 10 string polycarbonate Stick
The Grand Stick can be made of different types of wood, pressed bamboo or graphite. The Grand Stick has 12 strings, with 6 strings on the bass side and 6 strings on the melody side, or 5 strings on the bass side and 7 strings on the melody side. In classical tuning the melody strings descend (the highest string is at the bottom) and are tuned in fourths; the bass strings ascend (the highest string is on the top) and are tuned in fifths. The Grand Stick is a kind of extension of the Standard Stick, with one extra high string on the melody side and one extra high string on the bass side, or one extra high string and one extra low string on the melody side. A great variety of tunings is possible for the Grand Stick.
NS Stick is the fruit of collaboration between Emmett Chapman and Ned Steinberger. Unlike other Sticks, the NS/ Stick has a small body and a neckless head. The NS/Stick is made of hardwood. The NS/Stick has 8 strings either tuned in fourths or tuned as a guitar on the high strings and as a bass on the low strings. The NS Stick allows combination of tapping technique with the traditional bass or guitar techniques, such as picking, plucking or slapping. A few years ago, following Irene's suggestion, Emmett Chapman and Ned Steinberger created an NS/Stick with the fretless the bass side. Irene became the first owner of the half-fretless NS/Stick, which is today in production at Stick Enterprises.
The Veena is one of the oldest instruments in the world, dating about 1500 century BCE, the great-grandmother of the Sitar. It is widely used in classical Carnatic music of South India. It has four main playing strings as well as resonators on the hollow fret board. Till recently Veena has been mostly used for Hindu divine music. The Hindu goddess of arts Saraswati is often depicted playing the Veena. Indian Carnatic music performed on Veena is based on the strict system of 72 ragas (scales) and 72 talas (rhythms).
Respectfully called the King of the Instruments, the Oud is one of the most popular string instruments in the Middle East. Oud is a kind of a fretless lute, the anscestor of the guitar. The Oud is common in Arab, Turkish, Greek and Jewish traditional music. It has eleven strings, 10 of them paired. There is a great variety of Oud tunings and designs: Turkish, Egyptian, Syrian and Iraqi are the most common.
Saz ia a string instrument from Turkey widely used in Middle Eastern music. Most types of have have three strings and four resonators. It has a fretted board, though some frets are divided by a quarter tone and not by a half tone as it is common in European music.