Encyclopedia > Sitar

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A Sitar is a traditional Indian stringed musical instrument.

The sitar is around 127 cm long with a Pumpkin-shaped gourd at one end for the echo chamber, 19-20 frets spaced along the neck, 7 main strings and 11 sympathetic strings.

The most famous players of this instrument are Ravi Shankar and George Harrison.

The correct way of playing The index finger[?] of the left hand always stays in contact with the highest string. The second (?) finger is also used to push down this highest string against the frets. The other strings are not to be touched with the left hand. On the index finger of the right hand a mizrab[?] is placed and the 7 main strings are to be played with this.

In the beginning this way of playing can be very painful for the two index fingers. Experienced sitar players can be recognized by the black grooves in their index fingers.

Some people don't particularly enjoy this experience and tend to play the sitar more like a guitar.

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