first murder (2020)

music video

06:03 min



Regarding Western art history, it is confirmed by art historians that the weapon Cain used for his fratricide is depicted in a variety of representations as the jawbone of an animal. In some descriptions it is  explicitly stated that Cain found the bare donkey jaw in the desert. In Mexico they still use jawbones as  traditional instrument called quijada.




for vamh.de Online Musicking event

First Murder uses the quijada as an instrument to create a soundtrack for the first homicide in human history by using art-historical visual material. The quijada, also charrasca, cacharaina, charaina, carretilla or kahuaha, is a percussion instrument that is used in Latin American music. It's the lower jaw of a donkey, horse, or cattle. The jawbone is boiled, dried and placed in an ant nest. The ants remove all remains of connective tissue, so that the molars loosen and rattle in their tooth sockets.The instrument can be played in two ways: in one technique, the instrument is held in one hand and struck with the other, whereby the teeth produce a typical rattle sound, in the other technique one rubs the row of teeth with a wooden stick. This playing technique is called carrasca. It is played at folk festivals, carnivals and religious festivals. It is widespread in the Afro-Peruvian Música Criolla, in the music of the Dominican Republic, in the Mexican Son Jarocho and Son Afromestizo in the states of Guerrero and Oaxaca, in the Colombian Torbellino, in Guatemala, Belize and in the Chilean música chilota. A modern variant is the Vibraslap.

© Christina Köhler 2022