Ethnic group: Touareg
Canadian Museum of Civilization
Music from the Griots in Niger, LP
The inzad has one string and is played with a bow. Several
variants of this instrument can be found in West Africa, especially in Islamized countries.
It is made from half a calabash, which serves as a resonator, to which the skin of a goat
is nailed. A circular opening is cut in the skin. The string, made of horsehair, is
attached to the neck and held in place by two strips of leather. The inzad is
played by women and has both a therapeutic and a recreational purpose. Its therapeutic
function is to drive certain spirits out of the body of people who are ill or to treat
certain illnesses. Recreationally, it accompanies the poems sung by men, which praise
the bravery and heroic deeds of warriors. In the past, when the Tuareg were waging war
against neighbouring groups, caravans and colonial troops, the inzad was played
to encourage the warriors and glorify their bravery. If a warrior was valiant and
courageous, it was said that he deserved the inzad.