Long Steel Friction Bands


Playing the Long Steel Friction Bands

This instrument’s upright, rigid steel bands are sounded by friction using either of two methods. You can use a superball mallet to stroke along the length of the band, eliciting moaning sounds. Or you can grasp one of the monofilament strings hanging down and pull gently away from the instrument allowing the string to slip through your fingers, producing a sort of singing gong tone. Both of these techniques benefit from a friction enhancer such as violin bow rosin or a solution of tree sap and alcohol on the strings, bands, or fingers.

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