The bawu is a transverse blown free reed pipe with finger holes common to southern China and parts of Southeast Asia. It resembles a transverse flute in construction, except for the insertion of a small brass or bamboo reed into the blow-hole. The player must cover the reed entirely with their mouth and apply substantial air pressure to maintain the vibration of the reed. The bawu is only capable of a single octave and unlike free reed mouth-organs, it is only played by exhaling. In China the bawu has become a popular instrument for films and pop songs due to its melancholy sound.
|© R. Raine-Reusch, May 2002|