The fretless zither is a simple "parlor instrument" consisting of a sound box with strings going across the top and a sound hole in the middle. To the left is generally a section of "chord" strings, which, when a set of these is strummed with the finger, will play a certain chord. To the right is a chromatic scale, generally two octaves, which consist of the "melody" half.
A friend showed me this one while I was visiting and I was instantly enthralled by the instrument despite its poor shape and complete lack of tuning. I spent a day tuning it and recording some samples of the notes in a semi-studio setup. I compiled the samples I made into this basic fretless zither virtual instrument, using the Maize Sampler software.
- c. 4 Octaves of melody (last octave and a half and top half octave derived from harmony samples and extension of the top samples).
- Effects (knocks, chromatic gliss.).
- Harmony (5 chords- Bb Maj, F Maj, D Min, C Maj, and G Min).