A pear-shaped musical instrument commonly used in Middle Eastern music. It is similar to a lute and has a short neck with no frets, a rounded back, and a flat soundboard. The soundboard is usually made of spruce or cedar, and the back and sides of the instrument are made of rosewood, ebony, or other hardwoods.
The oud typically has six pairs of strings, made of nylon or gut, which are tuned in unison or in octaves. The strings are plucked using a plectrum, and the player can use their fingers to create vibrato and other ornamentation.
The oud has a rich, warm tone that is well-suited to playing melodies, chords, and improvisation. The instrument has a long history in Middle Eastern music, dating back to the seventh century, and is still widely used today in a variety of musical genres.
Playing the oud requires a unique set of skills and techniques, including the ability to play complex scales and modes, use the plectrum effectively, and control the instrument’s resonance and sustain. The oud is a versatile and expressive instrument that can provide hours of creative enjoyment and inspiration to those who take the time to master it.