Güiro

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Güiro
Phoenix-Musical Instrument Museum-Puerto Rican Güiro.jpg
Puerto Rican güiro on display in the Musical Instruments Museum of Phoenix
Percussion instrument
Other names Rascador, güícharo, candungo, carracho, rayo
Classification Idiophone, could be made from wood, gourd, metal, plastic or fiberglass
Hornbostel–Sachs classification 112.23
(Scraped idiophone, vessel)
Playing range
Speed of scrape produces some variation
Related instruments
Güira, guayo, guacharaca, reco-reco, quijada, washboard

The güiro (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈɡwiɾo]) is a Latin American percussion instrument consisting of an open-ended, hollow gourd with parallel notches cut in one side. It is played by rubbing a stick or tines along the notches to produce a ratchet sound.[1]

The güiro is commonly used in Puerto Rican, Cuban and other forms of Latin American music, and plays a key role in the typical rhythm section of important genres like son, trova and salsa. Playing the güiro usually requires both long and short sounds, made by scraping up and down in long or short strokes.[2]

The güiro, like the maracas, is often played by a singer. It is closely related to the Cuban guayo and the Dominican güira, which are made of metal. Other instruments similar to the güiro are the Colombian guacharaca, the Brazilian reco-reco, the quijada (cow jawbone) and the frottoir (washboard).[2]

Etymology[edit]

In the Arawakan language, a language of the indigenous people of Latin America and spread throughout the Caribbean spoken by groups such as the Taíno, güiro referred to fruit of the güira and an instrument made from fruit of the güira.[3]

Construction and design[edit]

The güiro is a notched, hollowed-out gourd.[4] Often, the calabash gourd is used.[5] The güiro is made by carving parallel circular stripes along the shorter section of the elongated gourd. Today, many güiros are made of wood or fiberglass.[6]

History[edit]

The güiro was adapted from an instrument which might have originated in either South America or Africa.[2] The Aztecs produced an early cousin to the güiro, called the omitzicahuastli which was created from a small bone with serrated notches and was played in the same manner as the güiro.[7] The Taíno people of the Caribbean have been credited with the origins of the güiro.[8] The Taínos of Puerto Rico developed the güajey, a long gourd or animal bones with notches, was an antecedent of the modern day güiro.[9] The güiro is also believed to have origins in Africa and brought over to Latin American and the Caribbean by African slaves.[10]

Use in music[edit]

Across Latin American and the Caribbean, the güiro can be found in a variety of traditional, folk dance music and used in dance ensembles and religious festivals.[11] In the Yucatan Peninsula, the güiro is used in two Mayan dances, the mayapax and the jarana.[12] In Cuba, the güiro is used in the genre danzón.[12] In Puerto Rico, the güiro often associated with the music of the jíbaro and is used in the musical genres of the plena, the seis, and the danza.[13][14]In the Caribbean coast, the güiro was used in traditional, folk dance cumbia music and is still used in modern cumbia music.[12] In Panama, the güiro can be found in folk dances such as the merjorana and cumbia.[6]

Use in classical music[edit]

The güiro is used in classical music both to add Latin American flavor, and also purely for its instrumental qualities.

Examples of compositions including a güiro are Uirapurú by Heitor Villa-Lobos, Latin-American Symphonette by Morton Gould and The Rite of Spring (Le Sacre du printemps) by Stravinsky.[15]

Other meanings[edit]

In Regla de Ocha, a güiro is a musical performance and ceremony that uses shekeres, hoe blade, and at least one conga to accompany the religious songs of the Orishas.[16]

Gallery[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Torres, George (2013). Encyclopedia of Latin American Popular Music. Santa Barbara, CA: Greenwood. p. 184. 
  2. ^ a b c Shepherd, John, ed. (2003). Continuum Encyclopedia of Popular Music of the World, Volume II: Performance and Production. London, UK: Continuum. pp. 372–373. 
  3. ^ C., Resnick, Melvyn (1981). Introducción a la historia de la lengua española. Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press. ISBN 0878400834. OCLC 7875400. 
  4. ^ Sue Steward (1 October 1999). Musica!: The Rhythm of Latin America - Salsa, Rumba, Merengue, and More. Chronicle Books. pp. 6–. ISBN 978-0-8118-2566-5. Retrieved 16 April 2013. 
  5. ^ Wasserman, Mark (2012). The Mexican Revolution: A Brief History With Documents. Boston: Bedford/St.Martin's. pp. 11,12, 63, 69, 112, 121. 
  6. ^ a b Schechter, John. "Güiro". Oxford Music Online. 
  7. ^ Russell, Craig (1998). "Music: Mesoamerica Through Seventeenth Century". Encyclopedia of Mexico: History, Society & Culture. 
  8. ^ Mark., Brill, (2011). Music of Latin America and the Caribbean. Boston, MA: Prentice Hall. ISBN 9780131839441. OCLC 653122923. 
  9. ^ Ríos, Kristof (2014). "Puerto Rico". In Stavans, Ilan. Latin Music: Musicians, Genres, and Themes. Santa Barbara: Greenwood. 
  10. ^ Gackstetter,, Nichols, Elizabeth. Pop culture in Latin America and the Caribbean. Robbins, Timothy R.,. Santa Barbara, CA. ISBN 9781610697538. OCLC 919876279. 
  11. ^ Schechter, John. "Güiro". Oxford Music Online. 
  12. ^ a b c Mark., Brill, (2011). Music of Latin America and the Caribbean. Boston, MA: Prentice Hall. ISBN 9780131839441. OCLC 653122923. 
  13. ^ Ríos, Kristof (2014). "Puerto Rico". In Stavans, Ilan. Latin Music: Musicians, Genres, and Themes. Santa Barbara: Greenwood. 
  14. ^ Solís, Ted (1995). "Jíbaro Image and the Ecology of Hawai'i Puerto Rican Musical Instruments". Latin American Music Review / Revista de Música Latinoamericana. 16 (2): 123–153. doi:10.2307/780370. 
  15. ^ Karl Peinkofer and Fritz Tannigel, Handbook of Percussion Instruments, (Mainz, Germany: Schott, 1976), 154.
  16. ^ Caudillo, Diane Elizabeth. Prayers to the Orishas. A Look at Santeria. 2007

External Links[edit]

Picture and description of a güiro made by the Taínos

Video demonstrating how to play the güiro by Bobby Sanabria affiliated with Jazz at Lincoln Center