What Is the Difference Between Greek Bouzouki and Irish Bouzouki?
What is the Greek Bouzouki?
Greek Bouzouki is a wired tool with a long neck and a pear-shaped body. When you see Bouzouki, it can remind you of the oud or mandolin. Like these, their body is made of wood shavings and covered with 3 or 4 double-choir lysed pairs of metal strings. This means that two strings are a little closer to each other and have the same sound. These two equal strings are always struck by the player together. A bouzouki is tuned deeper than a mandolin.
Strictly speaking, the bouzouki is not a traditional Greek instrument at all, but still quite young. Although there is some evidence that it evolved from ancient Greek tambour, it is more related to the Turkish saz. The Bouzouki came to modern Greece at the same time as the Rembetiko. This genre of music, also known as "Greek Blues", came to Greece in the 1920s. More specifically, to Piraeus, where the many refugees displaced from Smyrna and other parts of Asia minor settled. Often without great musical knowledge, the players met after their work in the Kafenion and played together – mainly improvisations. The good bouzouki players were distinguished by their "fast fingers". And this is still the case today.
What is the Irish Bouzouki?
Irish Bouzouki is an adaptation of Greek Bouzouki. Johnny Moynihan introduced the 4-String classic Greek Bouzouki to Irish traditional music in the mid-1960s and included it. In the early 1970s, Donal Lunny set the octave strings in the two courses of the Bouzouki's G and D as combined strings. With this adjustment, the low frequencies became stronger. He then asked for a bouzouki to match the specifications of the Lunny classic 4-string Greek Bouzouki and ordered it. There was only one difference. This bouzouki consisted of one-piece wires and three partially pulled back pieces. Since then, Greek Bouzouki has no longer been like himself and it has been Irish Bouzouki adapted to Ireland's style!
After Greek Bouzouki visited Ireland, designers rolled up their sleeves and developed new designs of this magical instrument for Irish traditional music. In doing so, they expanded the body of the bouzouk and replaced the rounded, one of the most distinctive features of the Greek Bouzouki, with a flat back with flat sides. A hybrid Irish Bouzouki with a three-piece back and straight edges appeared afterward.
Greek Bouzouki vs. Irish Bouzouki
Greek Bouzouki is the original part of this mince and is a 100-year-old instrument. This beautiful instrument has a sparkling, light, and discerning sound, and Greek Bouzouki has many variations within the framework of this main idea. The 6-String is the oldest version of Greek Bouzouki, and playing the 6 String has a more rhythmic effect compared to the 8-String. Irish Bouzouki has a three-piece back and the edges are flat. Irish Bouzouki's body has a stronger design to make his voice shaky. So you can hear a more "strong and toned" sound than Irish Bouzouki.