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Wednesday
Feb212018

About the Gyil

The Ghanaian xylophone is simply called the gyil (pronounced "JEEL"). Bewaa is a tradition of social dance songs music for Ghanaian xylophone. Traditional Ghanaian xylophone is performed with two xylophonists and a percussionist, often accompanied by a dance and drum troupe during social gatherings, dances, and concert performances. The music is used in traditional ceremonies in villages and communities in northern Ghana. The funeral repertoire is meant to honor the dead. 

I have listed the tuning of the notes of the traditional non-western gyil. Depending on the area, community, and the master xylophonist, the gyil has slightly different tunings. My gyil is tuned to Bernard Woma's traditional tuning, made by Tijian Lobi, at the Dagara Music Center in Medie, Ghana.