The Susap Yani Brass jaw harp is a tribute to the long jaw harp tradition of the Papuan people. Inspired by the brass jaw harps of the indigenous Dani and museum exhibits from the 19th century, Steev Kindwald has created a very unique fusion.
The Dani live in the Bailem Valley of West Papua and have become famous for their penis quivers (kotega) and their once warlike past as headhunters. Their jaw harps, called Pikkon, have been made of metal for quite some time, as the Dani find the sound more beautiful than that of bamboo Susaps. The narrow shield shape and the engraved design has been taken over by Steev and the Susap Lani is made of flexible brass. The artfully designed handle is reminiscent of a tree kangaroo and should be handled with care as the material is very filigree.
As with the traditional Susaps, the player can tell whole stories about myths or love through rhythm and the many different sound effects possibilities. This Susap is plucked away from the head like a Genggong jaw harp. Its sound is clear and rich in overtones.
The Susap Yani brass is delivered in an artfully decorated bamboo case.