Coin swinging – coin tossing

Customs Eastern Switzerland

Coin swinging (“Talerschwingen”), also known as coin rolling, is a fascinating game that has a firm place in traditional Swiss folk music. In this game, a five-franc coin is thrown into a clay, conical milk basin. However, the five-franc coin must have been minted before 1968, i.e. be a silver coin, in order to produce the desired sound.

The player tries to let the five-franc coin run along the edge of the basin with skillful rotational movements of the left hand without the coin falling to the bottom of the basin. The interaction between the bowl and the rotating coin produces a characteristic sound that is associated with the friction idiophone.

A typical Gspil, i.e. an ensemble, consists of three bowls of different sizes. These bowls should usually be tuned to the notes “b”, “f sharp” and “f”, creating a harmonic gradation of sound (see Rémy Schroeter’s website). The Talerschwingen has its roots in Eastern Switzerland, particularly in Appenzell and Toggenburg, and has established itself in Swiss folk music from there.

Coin swinging is not only a captivating game, but also an expression of Switzerland’s vibrant folk music culture and rich heritage. The players have mastered the art of taler swinging with impressive skill and precision, giving listeners a unique sound experience.

It is a valuable cultural asset that is passed down from generation to generation and strengthens people’s connection with their history and their home region. Talerschwingen not only fascinates the locals, but also attracts visitors from all over the world who want to experience the magic and traditions of Swiss folk music up close.

Video yodeling club Alpeblueme Herisau – Zäuerli with Becki

Jodlerclub Alpeblueme Herisau - Zäuerli mit Becki

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Yodeling and Talerschwingen in Appenzell

Yodeling and Talerschwingen in Appenzell

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