All About Baglama Saz – Sala Muzik

All About Baglama Saz

Baglama saz is the most commonly used string folk instrument in Turkey. It is known as baglama saz,
  • divan sazi(court saz)
  • bozuk
  • üç telli (three-string)
  • on iki telli (twelve-string)
  • cögür
  • kopuz
  • cura
  • tambura etc. depending on its size and region.

Baglama saz family is available in various sizes. These are from large to small; Meydan Saz, Divan Saz, Çöğür (Bağlama), Bozuk, Cura and İkitelli are the instruments.

  • Meydan Saz: A 12-string instrument is also called the 12-string instrument. Wires that give a bass sound and are thicker than bam wires are called bambam. It is the best bass voice instrument of the baglama saz family. Due to the length of the keyboard and the size of the instrument, its use is reduced today.
  • Divan Saz: Divan saz, which is a small size of the meydan saz, has 9 strings in groups of three. It has a bass and full sound. Although these two instruments are in separate groups, according to some musicologists; Meydan Saz and Divan Sazı are accepted as the same instrument.
  • Çöğür (Baglama): It is the most frequently used instrument of Baglama saz family. In general, it is a total of 7 strings in the lower string group, 2 in the middle and upper string groups and a total of 7 strings. The number of frets can vary from 17 to 22. Due to its frequent use today; saz instrument is also known as short-neck baglama. It is even possible to come across these names in many music literatures.
  • Bozuk: The number of wires and frets of this instrument used in the Aegean and Mediterranean regions are the same as for saz instrument. The saz instrument, which is no different from the Greek folk instrument Buzuki, is used very rarely today.
  • Cura: is the smallest and thinnest sounding instrument member of the baglama family. The member one size bigger than cura which gives a sound that is one octave deeper than cura is the tambura. The most deepest sound  of the baglama family is "Divan sazi" whose sound is one octave deep compared to tambura. They are available with 4 wires.
  • Ikitelli: Ikitelli, which is one of the oldest instruments of Anatolia, is slightly larger than cura. As the name suggests, it is a 2-string instrument. It is one of our instruments that has a rare use and has been forgotten.
  • Kopuz is shown as the ancestor of the baglama. These two instruments are quite similar in terms of both playing and shape. It is estimated that the word baglama was first used in the 18th century.




Structure Of The Baglama

A Baglama has three main parts;

  • the bowl (tekne)
  • the sounding board (göğüs)
  • a neck (sap).
    The bowl(tekne) part is generally made from mulberry trees as well as from woods of juniper, beech, spruce or walnut. The sounding board (göğüs)
    part is made from spruce and the a neck (sap) part from tied with fishing line. On that part of the neck furthest from the sounding board is a part called the peg. These pegs are used for tuning of baglama. There are pitches on the neck tied with fish line. 

    The bağlama is played with a plectrum made of cherry bark or plastic, and in some regions with the fingers. That mode is playing is called ‘şelpe.’

    There are three groups of wires on the baglama in groups of two or three.
    These wire groups can be tuned in different ways. For example, the wires in the lower group in the form of a tuning, called the baglama düzeni, give La sounds, the wires in the middle group are Re, and the wires in the upper group give Mi.


    By the way there are four main patterns in baglama. These;

    • Baglama düzeni
    • Müstezat düzeni
    • Misket düzeni
    • Bozuk düzen
    Nowadays, the most widely used layouts are; It is baglama düzeni and  bozuk düzen.
    In the bozuk düzen, the lowest wires are tuned as "re" note, the middle wires are "sol" and the top wires are tuned as "do" note.
    In the baglama düzeni, the lowest wires are "re" tuned, the middle wires are "sol" and the upper wires are tuned as "la". There are 23 frets on the long-neck baglama. There are 25 sounds on a wire. This number may increase in some regions. The tekne size of the long-neck baglama is generally 42 cm, and the handle length is 55 cm. There are 19 frets on a short-neck baglama and 21 sounds on a wire. The number of frets does not change according to the long-neck baglama.

    How to Maintain Baglama?

    If you want to use the baglama we have for many years and even leave it as a memory for future generations, you should do regular maintenance on your baglama. Caring for it will extend the life of your baglama and make it sound healthier.

    It is very important to keep your baglamas away from moisture and heat. However, do not leave your context in very hot or very cold environments. Because the temperature-cold ratio on the wall can affect the bonding. You should not leave it in humid environments either. It loses its bonding structure in humid and humid environments. For this reason, after the bağlama is played, the most important thing is to wipe the strings with a dry cloth and put them back in their sheath. In this way, the baglama wires can be used for a longer time and the life of the baglama is extended. It is inconvenient to wipe your baglama with a wet cloth or something containing alcohol.

    It should not be leaning against the wall when storing your baglama, if you do not have a stand, paper or wood should be placed. Care should be taken to carry it with the sheath that will be given to you when buying a bag. However, it should not be kept in the sheath when not in use. Whether the sheath is of good quality or poor quality, the humidity and temperature in the room can damage the wood of the thatch. On the other hand, it is highly recommended that you leave the strings loose if you do not play the baglama for the duration.


     All Baglama saz at our music instrument shop are hand made products of excellent craftsmen with affordable prices. If you are looking to buy a convenient Baglama saz with a fair value please visit our music instrument shop in İstanbul or check our online catalogue.

    Leave a comment

    All blog comments are checked prior to publishing
    You have successfully subscribed!
    This email has been registered