The Never-Stopping Chattering
Pipa (Chinese Lute) has its origin dated back to the Qin Dynasty (221-206 BC). As Pipa evolved, it was heavily influenced by Persian culture during the Tang Dynasty (618 – 907 AD) when the two great civilizations crossed over with each other, and became one of the most popular instruments in China ever since then.
As Pipa prospered in the most powerful Chinese dynasty, it left tremendous markings in the Chinese literature and culture. Pipa is most well-known for its rapid, successive playing style. A famous quote from a Chinese poem has it nailed: “[sounds like] the pearls, large and small, on a jade plate fall”.
ChineePipa contains various types of legato, tremolo, trills, rolls, slaps, and staccato, as well as special techniques, phrases and articulations. The note range is from A3 to D7 (for most patches).
With the extensive sampling and Modwheel triggered expressions, the live playability of ChineePipa is, again, unmatched. The audio demo here is an an exemplary showoff of what can be done with only one patch.
From the Grassroot
LiuQin is a grassroot folk instrument which was originally popular in some provinces of China for the last two centuries.
LiuQin was a simple and rough instrument at the begining, and it was once referred to as “the plebs’ Pipa” due to its lack of refinement – yet it is much closer to the true rural life.
The structure of today’s LiuQin has been redesigned in the mid-20th century. With the improved physical form, plus its higher pitch scale and its Western Mandolin-like acoustic effect, LiuQin has become a prominent instrument in today’s Chinese classical circle.