Listen Up! “J” is for Jaw Harp

J

Mouth harp, Ozark harp, Jew’s harp, trump, juice harp. All names for the jaw harp, which falls into the category of plucked idiophones. It’s considered to be one of the oldest instruments in the world, depicted in a Chinese drawing dating back to 4 BC. And despite its name, it has no connection to Jews or Judaism. So why the name? Some say it derived from the word ‘jaw,’ others from a French term: ‘jeu-trompe’ (toy trumpet), and still others claim it was the Jews who first sold these mouth harps in England. For whatever the reason, the jaw harp is played all over the world, like the Austrian jaw harp featured here:

14 thoughts on “Listen Up! “J” is for Jaw Harp

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s