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Instructors Manual and Test Item File



Sixth Edition

Bruno Nettl
Charles Capwell
Philip V. Bohlman
Isabel K.F. Wong
Thomas Turino
Timothy Rommen

6th ed. Instructors Manual revised by Patricia Cox

Long Island University, Brooklyn, NY
5th ed. Instructors Manual revised by Joseph S. Kaminski
Long Island University, Brooklyn, NY
2nd, 3rd, and 4th ed. Instructors Manual created by Margaret
Smith College, Northampton, MA

2012 Pearson Education, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey, 07458


Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458

All rights reserved

10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

ISBN 0-20-5-012876
Printed in the United States of America

Note to the Instructor

Chapter 1

Introduction: Studying Musics of the Worlds Cultures

Chapter 2

The Music of India

Chapter 3

Music of the Middle East


Chapter 4

The Music of China


Chapter 5

The Music of Japan


Chapter 6

The Music of Indonesia


Chapter 7

The Music of Sub-Saharan Africa


Chapter 8

The Musical Culture of Europe


Chapter 9

Music in Latin America


Chapter 10

Music in the Caribbean


Chapter 11

Native American Music


Chapter 12

Music of Ethnic North America




Test Item File



The textbook Excursions in World Music presents a comprehensive introduction to world musics that
is appropriate for general audiences. The instructors manual summarizes the textbook by chapter,
providing an outline with technical information, key concepts, listening skills, summaries of chapter
sections, musical examples, discussion questions, and recommended DVDs and videos. It is organized
to give the instructor easy access to the class curriculum for lesson planning.
The order of the chapters may be rearranged to suit your or the classs interests. The listening
examples should be played and explained in class along with video examples. General video resources
for class use are the thirty-volume JVC Video Anthology of World Music and Dance; Beats of the
Heart (a series of fourteen documentaries); and the twelve-volume Exploring the World of Music. A
major encyclopedic source is the ten-volume Garland Encyclopedia of World Music.
Suggested assignments are outlined in Appendix 1, and sample test questions are given for each
chapter in the Test Item File.
Devise a listening section for the tests by making a CD or tape, then ask the students to identify
regions, instruments, genres, techniques, etc. Mix familiar examples from the textbook CDs with less
familiar examples from other recordings you place on library reserve.
Final papers, as well as other types of writing assignments, should be used in grading. Such writing
assignments may include listening journals, performance reports, or workgroup projects.
Always keep a large world map and regional maps on display. On the first day of class, give each
student a blank world map with their syllabus; then, ask them to fill in the countries and cities
covered, as the class unfolds. Included map questions on tests.

The music and musical life of any society is a very complex phenomenon that may be
analyzed and comprehended from many perspectives. The authors of the textbook present a selection
of specific examples of music from around the world based on their own practical experience. They
extrapolate general principles that may be applied to many musics, yet each chapter illuminates
musical difference. The textbook thus emphasizes musical diversity and covers a representative
number of cultures, communities, events, instruments, and key concepts that form the foundation for
the study of world music.
Ethnomusicology the study of music as an aspect of culture; also, the comparative study of the music
of the world
Cultures, concepts, and principles, covered by chapter
Chapter 2 India: the relationship of music and dance; instrumental and vocal improvisation;
compositional structure; concept of meter; ancient roots; Hinduism; contrasting Northern and
Southern styles; film music
Chapter 3 The Middle East: differing conceptions of music; ways musicians learn to improvise;
common but diverse musical systems; heterophonic ensemble textures; amateurs over
professional musicians; Islam
Chapter 4 China: cultural and musical interactions of 56 recognized ethnicities; heterophonic silk
and bamboo ensembles; Peking Opera; Confucianism and proper music; 20th century popular
music; Songs of the Masses; rock music
Chapter 5 Japan: the survival of older musical traditions; elegant court music from China and
Korea; Shinto and Buddhist music; the integration of music and drama in noh and kabuki
theater; heterophony in chamber music; colotomic structure of court music
Chapter 6 Indonesia: contrasting Javanese to Balinese orchestration; influences of Hinduism and
Islam colotomic musical structures; Indonesian music in the Western world; the role of
Western artists and tourists in Indonesian musical culture
Chapter 7 Africa: interlocking instrumental and vocal music; overlapping sound textures; cyclical
forms; rhythmic complexity; hereditary musician families; communal music-making; talking
drums; urbanization of musical traditions
Chapter 8 Europe: the complex combination of different musical styles and peoples;
interrelationships among folk, art, and popular musics; music and instruments defining
national culture; technology and culture; attempts to integrate European music
Chapter 9 - Latin America: the relationships of social values to musical styles varieties of Hispanic
cultures; European and Native syncretisms; string instruments and their variants; Afro-Latin
American syncretisms
Chapter 10 - The Caribbean: creolization and musical syncretism; colonial music forms as symbols of
national identity; songs as voice of social protest; globalization and spread of regional

Chapter 11 - Native America: the history and pre-history of musical cultures without written records;
music as mediator between human and supernatural worlds; intertribal unity in powwows and
music to build consciousness of ethnic identity
Chapter 12 - Ethnic North America: interaction of rural folk music and urbanized multiethnic culture;
preservation and maintenance of ethnic musics through families, communities, and religion;
predominant African American influence in popular music; multiculturalism
Understanding Music as a Cultural Phenomenon
Music is diverse and we cannot expect to fit everything into a Western view.
A relativistic stance sees that each society has a musical system that suits its culture in that each
culture creates the kind of music it needs to reflect its values.
We can make musical comparisons on the basis of structure and function, but we cannot make
musical comparisons on the basis of qualitative judgments.
The world of music consists of a group of musics, like languages, in that each music is a
theoretical system unto itself.
We cannot examine musical sound alone, but must also examine the societys ideas about
music and the events in which music plays a part.
Music is universal in that all societies have something that is musical, but music itself is not a
universal language, in that understanding one means you understand another.
There has not been a musical evolution, as there have been evolutions of life species: musics do
not uniformly change from simple to complex (with Western music being the pinnacle, as many
behold), but musics change to satisfy social needs.
Oral traditions of music do not inevitably lead to musical change, nor does music notation
automatically cause the music to be fixed.
In societies where men and women have extremely different social roles, the genders have
separate repertoires and different ways of using their voice
In many political societies, what people may not say in words may be said be musicians in
Musical talent is not hereditary. With enough effort, anyone can become proficient in any
musical system.
Universals of Music
All societies have music.
All people sing.
Music is used in religious rituals to experience the supernatural.
Musical genres occur in all societies (such as songs associated with the seasons; childrens
work songs).
Songs or pieces are identified and distinguished from each others as a common musical unit.
The Classification of Musical Instruments
Aerophones (Wind instruments)
- Flutes -vertical flutes (flutes with upper-end being mouth-hole)
notched flutes
duct flutes (whistles)
transverse flutes or cross flutes (held horizontally)
- Trumpets and horns (of any material)
vibrating lips set air in motion
end-blown or side-blown
trumpets have a cylindrical bore

animal horns and metal horns have a conical bore

elephant tusks have a conical bore
Reeds - single reed instruments (clarinets)
double reed instruments (oboes and shawms)
free reed instruments (mouth-organs)
Outer-air instruments (acting directly on air)
Australian bull-roarer

Chordophones (String instruments)

- Bows - musical bows from hunting bows (with resonator)
- Harps - arch with strings set between
- Lyres - body with two arms and strings stretched to a crossbar
- Lutes - plucked with fingers or plectra
- Fiddles - bowed lutes
- Zithers - stick zithers, tube zithers, trough zithers
board zithers
psalteries (plucked)
dulcimers (struck with hammers)
Idiophones (Self-sounds, struck solid objects)
- Percussion - concussion idiophones (similar objects struck together)
sticks, troughs, logs, gongs, bells, xylophones, metallophones
stamped idiophones (hit on the ground, water, or body)
shaken idiophones - rattles/shakers, jingles, sistra
scraped idiophones (rasps, notched sticks)
- Lamellaphones - (sound from the bend and release of flexible material)
sansa (mbira) (plucked bamboo or iron tongues on resonator or piece of
juex harp (often erroneously spelled Jews harp- plucked held in the
- Friction instruments (sound produced by rubbing)
- Drums - single headed or double headed; nailed, pegged, glued, buttoned, laced,
tubular - cylindrical, barrel-shaped, conical, hourglass, goblet-shaped
kettle drums
frame drums (frame with no body)
- Friction drums (stick or cord passing through membrane)
- Mirlitons (membrane set in motion by blowing, as the kazoo)
Electrophones (electronic instruments, synthesizers, computers)
Musical Change, Transmission, and History
All musics have a history and all of them change.
A cultures music is affected when brought in contact with another musical culture.
In many societies, music is often transmitted aurally (by being heard).
Western music has spread throughout the world in the 20th century and affected local
(1) Western colonization of much of the world; and after 1945, the political and economic
dependency of former colonies
(2) Advances in communication through mass media, airlines, and computer networks
(3) The diffusion of Western and Islamic cultures throughout history

Discussion Questions
What is music? (Play contrasting examples from Western culture: classical music, country &
western, rock; then play contrasting Non-western examples: Koranic or Tibetan chant, Thai or
Korean court music, Native American or African drumming, a raga or a Beijing opera aria.
Students should learn to dismiss their preconceived categories of music.)
How can culture affect music?
How can music affect culture?
How is music considered as a behavior?
What types of expectations do audiences have when hearing music from their own culture?
How does disdain for another cultures music reflect disdain for the culture?
How can we be more open-minded when listening to music of another culture?
How can we better understand different musics when we compare them to languages?
Since there are many similarities in musical instruments throughout the world, could there
have been patterns of cultural diffusion and how might they have operated?

Indian music is a classical art music tradition with many similarities to Western classical
music: 1) it appeals to and is patronized by a small, educated segment of the population; 2) it has a
body of theory and a formal system of study; and 3) it is disseminated through public concerts in
which there is an expected program order. There are also significant differences: 1) pieces are mixed
pre-composed and improvised material; 2) there are different levels of improvisation that occur at
specific points in a piece; and 3) a performers skill is measured by the ability to improvise in free
Two major musical systems exist in Indian music: Karnatak (also spelled Carnatic) in the
south and Hindustani in the north. Karnatak is the older Hindu tradition, and Hindustani has been
influenced by the later arriving Islamic culture. Hindustan is the region of North India.
Karnatak (also spelled Carnatic) South Indian music style in the Hindu tradition
Hindustani North Indian music style influenced by Islamic culture
Sangita generally translated as music, means not just the melody and rhythm of an instrument or
a voice, but also the embodiment of rhythm in dance, and the dramatic expression of story and mood
through dance or song
Kathak Dance
Kathak one of the six major dance forms of India; deriving from the word katha,
meaning story- telling. The dance involves the flailing of the arms, flicking of the wrists,
jerking of the head, and twitching of the eyebrows.
Nritta an abstract Kathak dance
Abhinaya a mimed Kathak dance
Bol a system of vocalized rhythmic syllables memorized and recited by drummers to
learn and retain patterns
Definitions of Hindustani Terms
Khyal a modern genre of Hindustani vocal music, deriving from the Arabic word for
imagination. The repertoire is based on short songs (two to sixteen lines), which the
singer uses as raw material for improvisation. It is accompanied by a harmonium and a set
of tabla drums.
Gat-tora the section of Hindustani instrumental music performance upon which the tabla
begins. The gat is a short composed melody and is alternated with improvisational passages
called tora.
Harmonium a small organ, the bellows of which are pumped with one hand while the
other hand fingers the keyboard
Tabla a pair of drums used in Hindustani music
Sitar primary plucked lute of Hindustani music
Tambura a plucked lute (also used in Karnatak music) that provides the drone tones
under solos, contributing an integral sonic texture in the structure of Indian music
Pakhavaj a double-headed, barrel-shaped drum of Hindustani music
Lay or laya tempo
Alap or alapanam raga improvisation in free rhythm
Rag, raga, or ragam a scale and its associated musical characteristics such as the number
of pitches it contains, its manner of ascending and descending, its predominant pitch, the

tuning of its pitches, its metaphysical context and so forth

Jor the section of Hindustani instrumental performance that follows alap and introduces
a pulse
Jhala the concluding section of instrumental improvisation following the jor section (in
Hindustani music), during which the performer makes lively and fast rhythmic patterns on
the drone strings (jala) of an instrument
Tal or tala meter
Sawal-jawab question-answer rhythmic challenges between soloist and accompanist
in Hindustani music

Roots of Indian Music

The Vedas a corpus of texts originating in Ancient India; the oldest scriptural texts of
Vedic chant intoned verses of Vedas performed by Brahmin priests
Varna the division of society in Indian culture, sometimes translated as caste
Brahmin or Brahman - the highest varna, or caste, in Indian society
Early Music Theory, Continuity, and Divergence
Rig-veda a collection of verses that tell stories of the Hindu gods
Sama-veda the rig-veda set as hymn texts and sung to a collection of special tunes called
Natyasastra an early treatise on the performing arts, written sometime before the fifth
century C.E. In the Natyasastra, twenty-two steps make-up an octave.
Natya drama
Rasa the mood created by a musical aesthetic of a raga
Sruti a microtone in Indian music and an ornamental pitch
North and South: The Hindustani and Karnatak Systems
Sangitaratnakara a treatise written in the thirteenth century distinguishing Hindustani
from Karnatak music style
From the thirteenth century, the influence of the Persian and Turkish cultures of Islam
became of singular importance for North India when the foreigners established political
control over the area from the city of Delhi.
Gharanas a school of professional musicians in North India who originally traced their
heritage to a family tradition but which now includes non-biological descendants as well.
An ustad is a master; a shagird is a student. The gharanas extend from the famous
sixteenth-century musician Tansen, who was brought to the imperial court near Delhi by
the Mughal Akbar.
Tyagaraja a Karnatak musician and composer of the eighteenth century who refused an
appointment to the southern court of Tanjore. He instead composed songs for the god
Rama, and they were not kept as the inheritance of his family tradition.
Guru in Karnatak music, teacher
Shishya in Karnatak music, a student
Devadasis translates as servants of the gods. In South India, they were female children
dedicated to the service of the temple and received intensive training in the art of dance.
Being married to the temple deity, they were not allowed to marry any man in the usual
Bharata Natyam traditional womens dance repertory in South India, said to be the
Cosmic Dance of the god Shiva. The person Bharata is said to be the author of the
Natyasastra, but the term is derived from four words: bha from bhava (facial expression), ra
from raga (musical characteristics), ta from tala (meter), and natyam (drama).
Karnatak Recital and Types of Pieces

Varnam a type of song with which Karnatak recitals generally begins, sometimes
compared to the Western classical etude or study
Kriti the major song type of Karnatak music, divided into three parts: pallavi,
anupallavi, and caranam
Ragam or alapanam an improvised composition, played before the kriti, that
demonstrates the musicians' abilities to interpret the ragam (or mode) in which the kriti is
Talam the Karnatak version of tala (meter)
Pallavi the opening section of a kriti, with a refrain at the beginning and end
Niraval a type of improvisation derived from the kriti text
Svarakalpana a type of improvisation in which the names of the pitchessa, re, ga, ma,
pa, dha, ni are sung instead of the text or, if played instrumentally, each pitch is played
Samam the first beat of the talam

Chordophones sitar, tambura, vina (stick zither of Karnatak music), sarod (fretless lute
of Hindustani music), violin, guitar (played slide-guitar style)
Aerophones harmonium (free reed), shehnai (double reed), bansuri (flute)
Membranophones tabla, Pakhavaj, mridangam (double-headed, barrel-shaped drum of
Karnatak music)
Idiophone jalatarang (porcelain bowels filled with different amounts of water)
The Influence of Indian Music and Prospects
Atan the national dance
Filmigit popular film songs
Lata Mangeshkar (b. 1929) the worlds foremost Indian female vocalists of filmigit. She
sung in over twenty Indian languages and held the Guinness Book World Record for
maximum songs in a repertory from 1974-91 with over 30,000.
Ghazal a form of sung poetry associated with Persian-Arabic Muslim culture taken up
by Urdu speakers in North India and Pakistan
Bhangra pop music of the South India diaspora combining aspects of hip-hop (AfroAmerican pop) with traditional folk dance music from the state of Punjab
The Beatles used Indian music on several of their recordings in the 1960s.
Shakti a word that means energy, is the name of an Indo-jazz fusion band made up of
violinist L. Shankar, American guitarist John McLaughlin, and tablaist Zakir Hussein
Key Concepts for the Unit
Layers of Musical Activity:
Indian music performance, Karnatak and Hindustani, is triple-textured, for there are always
three layers of musical activity: a melodic soloist (ex. the sitar or singer), an accompanying
drummer (ex. the tabla or mridangam), and a drone instrument (tambura). If the ensemble is
large, there may be secondary melodic and/or percussion instruments.
Raga (ragam in South India) is a way of making melodic music. A raga has a scale, a typical
order of tones, a character that musicians agree on, some non-musical ideas with which it is
connected, and a typical time of day and season for performance. In North India there are
some 200 ragas. In South India there are 72 main ragas and many secondary ones.
Tala (talam in South India) is a way of organizing meter. It is a fixed, cyclically repeating

time span in which beats are arranged in an abstract hierarchy. In South India there are seven
main talas and four secondary ones. In North India there are many more.
Listening Skills
Hearing the Layers of Musical Activity:
Melody and drone Drone may be understood in terms of a steady repeated pattern serving
as a foundation under the melody. When a tambura drones under a sitar, the two may sound
like the same instrument. The drum layer is more easily recognizable due to its timbral
Differentiating between North and South Indian Forms:
The simplest way to do this is by comparing a South Indian kriti with a North Indian gat-tora,
demonstrating the greater structured nature of the kriti and improvisational freedom of the
gat- tora.
Differentiating between Composed and Improvised Material:
This can be clearly demonstrated in a South Indian kriti in which a vocalist is accompanied by
a violinist. In improvised sections, the violinist doesnt know what the vocalist will do, so he
lags slightly behind. In composed sections, the tune is known to both performers, so they play
Counting Tala:
Each North Indian tala has a theka, a repeated pattern of syllables (bols), used as a memory
aid. Have students speak the theka of tintal (4 + 4 + 4 + 4) while adding its hand movements
to the gat-tora section the CD1 track 1. + represents a clap, a finger count, and O a wave):
















Singing Raga:
Convey the scalar aspect of raga by having students sing vocal exercises using the Indian
syllables sa ri ga ma pa dha ni sa. Try a raga that sounds unusual to western ears.
Chapter Section Summaries
Kathak dance
Kathak is among the six major classical dances of India. The word is derived from katha,
meaning the art of storytelling. Dancers entered their professions through inheritance to narrate
history through entertainment. In dance, music and mime are utilized to tell Sanskrit epics such as the
Mahabharata and the Ramayana. Kathak eventually moved out of the temples and into the courts
where a class of dancing girls and courtesans emerged. In the mid-19th century, Kathak had a
renaissance as a classical art form.
Gat-tora performance
Medium and fast gats performed on sitar by Sudhir Phadke. Textbook CD1, track 1

Raga: Yaman (C d e F # g a b)
Tala: Tintal (4 + 4 + 4 + 4)
CD track 1 is an extremely short example of a North Indian gat-tora. It begins with a short
alap/jor played by the sitar, accompanied only by the tambura. At 110, the sitarist introduces the
melody of the gat, and the tabla enters with tala tintal (16 beats). At 350, the pace increases as the
tabla switches from medium (madhya) to fast (drut) tempo. Notice that when the sitarist improvises,
the tabla marks the tala clearly, but when the sitarist plays the familiar gat melody, the tabla has the
opportunity to improvise.
Historical roots
The Vedas
Recommended Listening
The Four Vedas. Asch Records, Asch Mankind Series, Album No. AHM 4126 has different chants
and singing styles as well as liner notes.
Timeline of Indian Historical and Musical Events
2nd Millennium B.C.E.

Northwestern India and Pakistan site of Harappan civilization,

contemporaneous with Mesopotamian civilization.

2nd-1st Millennium B.C.E.

Aryan nomads from further North and West begin to arrive in the
region eventually displacing Harappan civilization. They establish
the Vedic religion, predecessor of Hinduism. Its sacred texts,
preserved in oral tradition, are the Vedas, whose musical chants
and melodies influence development of Indian music.

5th Century C.E.

The Natyasastra is written, an early treatise on the performing arts

13th Century C.E.

Muslim invaders come to the North, eventually taking over Delhi,

but the South remains largely Hindu and the classical music
system bifurcates into Hindustani and Karnatak systems.

Early 16th Century

Northern musician Tansen becomes the official musician of the

imperial court near Delhi; becomes model for the master art
musician in the North.

Early-to-mid-18th Century

New instruments arrive: the violin from Europe and the sarod from

Later 18th century

Tyagaraja becomes the most famous musician in Karnatak culture,

writing many of the kritis that continue to be performed to today.
He turns down a court appointment to his religious vocation.

Mid-19th Century

Christian missionaries bring portable pump organs (known as

harmoniums) to India which rapidly become popular instruments
for song accompaniments

Late 19th-Early 20th Century

Intellectuals begin a movement to remove the stigma from musical

performance, making music and dance acceptable to the middle

India wins its independence from Britain; increased nationalistic
feelings lead to renewed interest in native music.


The Beatles George Harrison becomes interested in the sitar,

studying with Ravi Shankar, the great Indian master. Shankars
music is introduced to the West by Harrison most memorably in
the 1969 Concert for Bangladesh.

North and South Indian traditions

Two major musical traditions in India have developed: Karnatak (South Indian) and
Hindustani (North Indian). Karnatak music is more intricately ornamented melodically and
rhythmically and has an elaborate music theory. The modern style is traced back to an 18th-century
singer-saint, Tyagaraja (1767- 1847). Hindustani music, which relies more heavily on improvisation,
is traced back to a 16th-century court musician called Tansen (1500-89). Tyagaraja was a
contemporary of Beethoven (1770-1827), while Tansen was a contemporary of Thomas Tallis
(c.1505-85) and Palestrina (c.1525-94).
From the 13th century on, North India came under the political, religious, and cultural
influence of Persian and Turkish invaders. Fundamentally different Islamic (Northern) and Hindu
(Southern) values, attitudes towards music and dance, status of musicians and dancers, and
transmission of music and dance, are responsible for the divergence in musical cultures. Comparison
of the careers, status, and historical significance of Tansen and Tyagaraja highlights these differences.
Karnatak music
The Karnatak tradition encompasses Dravidian-speaking Hindu areas of South India
(including Tamil areas of Sri Lanka). Contemporary repertoire and style developed in Tanjore
between the 17th and 19th centuries. The leading musician, Tyagaraja, was neither from a family of
professional musicians nor employed by a court (as was usual at the time), but rather was a Brahmin
singer-saint whose musical career was a by-product of his life as a devotee of the deity Rama. His
compositions, and those of his contemporaries Syama Sastri and Muttuswami Dikshitar, still form a
significant part of the repertoire of modern performers. Today, Karnatak music is patronized by the
urban elite, particularly of Madras.
Common Karnatak instruments
Vocal music is the main type of Karnatak music. Instrumentalists play vocal melodies and try
to maintain the articulation determined by the pronunciation of the words in the original text. The
most common Karnatak instruments are the vina, violin, mridangam, nagasvaram (oboe) accompanied
by tavil (drum), bansuri (bamboo flute), and tambura.
Karnatak improvisation
There are five different types of improvisation used in Karnatak music. The first two are in
free rhythm, the others are accompanied by mridangam and/or secondary percussion which mark the
metric cycle (tala).

(Also called ragam) may precede the performance of a composition. Accompanied

only by the drone of the tambura, it is a free-ranging exploration of the raga without
regular pulse. Overall tempo is slow, ornamentation is dense, and there is a gradual

increase of range as the raga unfolds.


Repeats the exploration, but with a pulsed (but still non-metric) rhythm.


Takes one line from a pre-composed kriti and improvises variations on it. The text
and its rhythmic articulation (tala) are maintained. The pitch content is varied within
the prescriptions of the raga.

Svarakalpana: Based loosely on material from the kriti, it is often performed in antiphonically with
the accompanying instrument that answers each line. Syllables (sa, re, ga, ma, pa,
dha, ni) are sung in place of words of the text (or separately articulated by an
instrumentalist), over increasingly greater spans of time, with a proportionate
increase in rhythmic density.

Used in more extended improvisations. The composed fragment is altered in its

relation to the metric cycle by augmentation (doubling, tripling, and quadrupling the
note values) and diminution (the reverse process). The aim is to demonstrate
virtuosic control over the time component of a performance.

Typical Karnatak recital

Karnatak recitals include several items starting with simple, pre-composed pieces with little
elaboration, moving to more complex improvisatory structures, then concluding with short fixed
compositions. A typical performance might include one or more of the following:

Etude-like pieces used mainly as warm-ups.


Performed with little/no improvisation. Simple kritis consist of three sections:

pallavi, anupallavi, and caranam (pronounced charanam), all accompanied by
percussion in a regularized meter (tala). The first portion of the pallavi serves as a
refrain, recurring at the end of all three sections. Texts are usually devotional.

More complex kritis:

Preceded by ragam and tanam, and elaborated with niraval and svarakalpana.
A long, largely improvised piece that may be sung or played with augmentation/
diminution (trikala) of the pallavi theme (usually a line from a kriti). It demonstrates the
musicians skill and requires exceptional training, confidence, and spontaneous creative
Short lyrical pieces:
Either from the dance repertoire (e.g., padam, javali, or a fast tempo tillanam) or from
Sanskrit devotional verses.
Listening Example
Kriti Banturiti, sung by Seetha Rajan, composed by Tyagaraja. Textbook CD1, track 2 .
Raga: Hamsanadam (c-e-f#-g-b)
Tala: Adi (4 + 2 + 2 beats)

Indian audiences keep track of the rhythmic cycle by clapping tala. It can be an excellent
classroom activity to help students understand the rhythmic structure. Adi tala can be counted as
follows: (e is for eduppu, or beginning, of the particular song):


Ban-tu- ri-


go- lu- vi-

ya vay-ya

(The exact placement of the words varies from phrase to phrase.)

Schematic diagram of Banturiti:
The upper case letters indicate musical and textual sections; lower case letters indicate
musical recurrence set to new text. Superscript numbers indicate slight variation at the end of melodic
lines (sangatis). Letters enclosed between repeat marks ( : : ) indicate phrases that are repeated
once. (e.g., at the end of the partial 12 B or 12 b sections).
Pallavi: :A: :A1 : :A2 : Acad
Anupallavi: 12B :B: :B1 :



:D: : a : 12b : b: : b1 :
: b2-c: A1 Acad

An elaborate version of this kriti is sung by Seetha Rajan. Textbook CD1, track 2.
This version begins with an extremely brief alapana. At the caranam, echoed by the violin,
Rajan improvises variations on the text (niraval). After a short violin solo, she inserts phrases of
melodic and rhythmic improvisation (svarakalpana) using Indian syllables. When the singer has
finished her improvisation, she returns to the text and completes the remaining caranam lyrics. Kritis
are usually much longer than this example.
Hindustani music
The Hindustani tradition encompasses Indo-Aryan-speaking areas of North India (including
Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sinhalese areas of Sri Lanka). The musician Tansen was brought to the
Mughal court of the Emperor Akbar in Delhi. The Mughals were Muslims, as were the Hindustani
musicians, so musician families passed their profession through inheritance by tradition while
maintaining a low social status. The dissolution of the Mughal court in the 18th century led to a
dispersal of musicians to other centers of patronage.
Common Hindustani instruments
Sitar, sarod, tambura, tabla, harmonium, shehnai accompanied by khurdak (kettledrums)
Hindustani improvisation
Improvisation preceding a composition is similar to that of the Karnatak tradition. However,
at the gat, more improvisation occurs.

Like the Karnatak alapana, the alap precedes a performance of a long raga. The soloist is

accompanied only by the tambura, for it is a free-ranging exploration of the raga without
keeping a regular pulse. The tempo starts out broadly and increases in a series of
plateaux, until the articulatory density precipitates the introduction of a pulse.

Called non-tom in vocal pieces, the jor is pulsed improvisation. The tempo and rhythmic
density increase during the jor.


This is a second type of pulsed improvisation, with a sudden increase in the use of the
drone strings (jhala strings).


The section of Hindustani instrumental music performance upon which the tabla begins.
The gat is a short composed melody and is alternated with improvised passages called
tora. In gat-tora, the soloist and tabla player exchange roles, one improvising for a
rhythmic cycle or two, while the other plays a fixed melody or rhythmic pattern. Because
either the soloist or the drummer is marking the tala cycle, the tala is easier to follow in
North Indian performances than in South Indian. At the climax of the performance, both
soloist and drummer engage in a duel (sawal-jawab), wherein intricate rhythmic patterns
become decreasingly shorter to the end.

Typical Hindustani recital

A concert might feature several singers, each of whom will give an extended performance of
dhrupad or khyal and/or instrumentalists who perform gat-tora. These main genres may be followed
by lighter pieces before the next artist takes the stage. For example, a dhrupad may be followed by a
hori- damar, khyal by a thumri or a bhajan, and a gat-tora by a thumri or a dhun.
Popular music
Indian films are the greatest source of Indian popular music. A filmigit is a film song. Many
kinds of music serve as sources for filmigit material, including folk songs and classically based
melodies to rock and jazz. The filmmaking practice of dubbing musical numbers has been continued
to the present, and actors lip-synch to the recordings of famous singers such as Lata Mangeshkar.
Mangeshkars voice can bring success to a film.
Western popular music and jazz with Indian music fusions are taking place in India and
abroad. The Karnatak violinist L. Shankar and the tabla player Zakir Hussein formed the ensemble
Shakti, playing Indianized jazz with artists like the American jazz-fusion guitarist John McLaughlin.
Listening Example
Ghazal, Bat Karane Mujhe Mushkil, by Zasar. Textbook CD1, track 3.
Rag: Pahari, a scale similar to the major scale but with occasional accidentals
Tala: Keharwa (8 beat)
Vocal: Mala Ganguly; tabla: Samar Das; tambura and harmonium (unknown)
Ghazal, performed in North India and Pakistan, is a blend of Indian and Western music with
roots in Islamic culture and Urdu poetry. It consists of a chain of related couplets, culminating in a
punchline couplet that brings exclamations from the audience. Traditional poetry-reading sessions
are called mushaira, and the ghazals may be sung by classically trained singers. The ghazal was once a
courtesans art. Popular ghazals are also found among filmigit.

This ghazal on the CD alternates two sections, as do many types of Indian melodies. The first
section provides the refrain and first verses in a lower range; then, the second section is the second
verse in a higher range.
Indian music developed over many centuries and was influenced by Indo-Aryan
speaking settlers in the Northwest of the country around the 2nd millennium B.C.E.
Later theorists traced the roots of Indian music to Vedas, a group of religious poems of
the Indo- Aryans that were chanted and eventually set to music.
A second wave of settlers, peaking in the 13th century C.E., brought a new religio
Islam and new attitudes toward music. At about this time, Indian musical culture
began to split into two main parts: Northern (Hindustani) and Southern (Karnatak).
Northern music tends to be smoother and less ornamented than Southern. Both base
melodies on scalar modes called raga.
Northern music is more improvised than Southern, which is based more upon fixed
compositions like the kriti. In Southern music, instrumental performance reproduces
vocal compositions.
As new influences came to India over the past few centuries, new instruments (the
violin, harmonium, clarinet, saxophone) were incorporated into the music. Today,
Indian music has absorbed much Western influence and in turn has had influence on
Western pop and jazz.
Discussion Questions
1. How have American music styles diverged from contacts with other cultures, as in the
case of Hindustani music diverging from Karnatak after Persian and Turkish contact in
the North?
2. What does Indian music have in common with Western classical music?
3. What does Indian music have in common with jazz?
4. What are the similarities in the roots of Indian music and the roots of the Western
classical tradition?
5. How would you compare Indian music to Indian food?
6. How is the relationship of composer to performer understood in Indian music?
7. Has any student heard Indian music in an American pop song?
8. Is Indian film music an escape from reality, or does it articulate life?
9. Is American film music an escape from reality, or does it articulate life?
Recommended DVDs and Videos
Music of India, by Educational Video Network (1969; VHS 2004) (22 min.). Karnatak and Hindustani
music, instruments, ways Indian music differs from Western music, traditional Indian dance showing
the importance of the art of gesture.
Dances of India - Bharata Natyam Arangetram Dances, directed by David Morrison (2003) (60 min.).
It shows Bharata Natyam dances performed during formal performances and during Arangetram
(graduation recital). It includes songs, meanings, and descriptions.
Therell Always Be Stars in the Sky The Indian Film Music Phenomenon, from The Beats of the
Heart series. A documentary directed by Jeremy Marre, produced by Shanachie Records (1992) (60
min.). It takes you behind the scenes of India's Bollywood to meet actors such as Raj Kapoor), singers
such as Lata Mangeshkar, and musical directors such as (Kalyanji Anandji).

Raga with Ravi Shankar, produced and directed by Howard Worth, Mystic Fire Video, Apple Film
presentation (1991) (97 min.). Ravi Shankar returns to India after many years in the West to pay honor
to Usted Allaudin Khan, the teacher who initiated him into the oral traditions of the Indian classical
music. This film shows the sitarist and composer rehearsing, teaching and performing in concert.
Ravi Shankar In Portrait, directed by Mark Kidel and Ferenc van Damme, Opus Arte and BBC (2002)
(190 min.). 2 DVDs. The first DVD, called Ravi Shankar -- Between Two Worlds, is an account of
India's celebrated musician and follows two years of his life against seven decades of collaboration
with Western musicians. Archive footage shows concerts with Zakir Hussein and other key
performances filmed from the 1930s to the present. The second DVD shows Ravi Shankar live in
concert performing two ragas (Raga Anandi Kalyan and Raga Rangeela Piloo).

The music of the Middle East encompasses the musical systems of Iran (Persia), the Arab
diaspora, and Turkey, each maintaining a classical tradition with many similarities to Western
classical music: 1) there are articulated bodies of theory (although different from Western); 2) music is
performed in concerts with pieces performed in expected orders; 3) teacher-pupil lineages are valued;
4) composers are venerated; and 5) famous performers are highly regarded.
Islamic cultural and musical values are orthodox and affect the understanding of what is and is not
considered music:
Khandan to sing, recite, or read, literally. It is the highest form of Middle Eastern music, used
primarily in chanting the texts of the Koran.
Musiqi Middle Eastern classical and folk music with less prestige than the Khandan
Maqam the generic term for mode, or system of composing melody, in Arabic classical music. The
term is used throughout the Middle East and appears with different names such as dastgah and gusheh
in Persian, or mugam in Azerbaijan.
Concerts in Tehran
Dastgah a mode (or scale) as the basis for the composition of a piece of Persian music
Tar a long-necked lute
Kamancheh a spiked fiddle played with a small round bow
Santour a Persian hammer dulcimer
Ney (also nai) an end-blown flute
Dombak (also zarb) a bowl-shaped single-headed drum
Setar a long necked lute
Shur the first dastgah of the radif
Chahar mezrab literally, four picks or four hammers; the term deriving from the fast
sounds, as though four hands were playing an instrument
Avaz an improvised, nonmetric section (vocal or instrumental)
Majles a private concert
Common Features and Diversity
Many Arabic nations
Iran and Turkey are non-Arabic.
Israel a markedly unique culture surrounded by Arab nations
Islam (established 622 AD) a monotheistic and egalitarian religion
Numerous ethnic minorities, such as the Kurds
The Middle Eastern Sound
Monophony one melody line played simultaneously by all performers without harmonic
Parallel polyphony the same melodic line is played at different volumes or pitch levels
by two or more performers
Heterophony two or more performers playing the same melody, but with small
differences in timing or ornamentation
Ornamentation tones bent and embellished with trills, glissandos, or short secondary

Timbre (sound quality) vibrato-less; hard-edged, raspy quality
Solo vocal music dominates
Improvisation highly valued

Plucked Lutes: oud (most common); bouzouq (Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, and Turkey) setar
(Persian classical music); tar (Iran); dotar (Afghanistan, Central Asia, and Northern Iran)
tambur (Turkey)
Bowed lute: jouzeh and rebab (in Arabic cultures); kamancheh (throughout the Middle
East); and qichak (Eastern sections)
Zithers: plucked qanun (or kanun); struck (hammered) santour
Conical hand drums: darbucca (or tabl); frame drums including tambourines (daff and
riqq); and goblet-shaped drums (dombak)
End-blown flutes: nai (or ney); oboe-like double-reed instruments (zornah, surna); and a
folk instrument type that consists of a pair of oboe-like pipes (of equal or unequal
length), including the Arabic arghul and zummarah and the Persian qoshmeh
Three Unities
There are three prominent features and beliefs that unite Middle Eastern musical culture:
Vocal and compositional styles derived from the recitation of the Holy Koran - there
are two styles of chant: muttaral is syllabic, unembellished, and subdued; mujawwad is
emotional, ornamented, and melodically complex.
Music creates a kind of ecstatic, emotional bond between performer and audience. The
terms tarab in Arabic and hal in Persian denote this quality.
The suite, or collection of individual pieces played together, is the major unifying
compositional principle. The most common type of suite found throughout the region
is known as the taqsim (taksin, in Turkey). It consists of two parts: an improvised,
usually nonmetric solo instrumental number; and the beshrav or peshrev, a metric,
composed piece usually performed by an ensemble. Other types of suites are the
Egyptian wasla, the naubat found in Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia. The Persian
dastgah (the same name is used for this extended suite as for Persian modes) is
performed in five parts: pishdaramad (composed, for ensemble); chahar mezrab
(composed or improvised, solo); avaz (solo, improvised, non-metric); tasnif (metric,
composed song); and reng (a light, dance-derived instrumental piece). Iraq shares a
similar form, known as the Iraqi maqam, which also centers on an extended avaz.
Music in Culture
Professional musicians are lowly regarded, while cultured amateurs are highly regarded.
Halal a word that means legitimate. For music, it is chanted poetry; music for family
celebrations such as weddings; occupational folksongs; military music.
Haram a word that means illegitimate, in reference to classical musics as well as
musics associated with unacceptable contexts such as nightclubs or for belly dancing
Melodic Modes and Improvisation
Maqam the generic term for mode (makam in Turkish) (mugam in Azerbaijan) (dastgah
in Iran)
Maqam tones are separated by pitch distances called intervals that comprise whole-tones,
half-tones, three-quarter-tones (slightly larger the Western half-tone), and five-quartertones (slightly larger than the Western whole-tone).


Every Arabic or Turkish maqam or Persian dastgah has a name. Some give the place of
origin (like the Greek modes).
Taqsim a nonmetric improvised instrumental piece based on a maqam, consisting of
several short sections
Iq'a (or wazn in Arabic; usul in Turkish) rhythmic modes, or meter
Radif in Persian classical music, the body of music, consisting of 250300 short
pieces, memorized by students and then used as the basis or point of departure for
improvised performance
Gusheh in Persian classical music, a subdivision of a dastgah and smallest constituent of
the radif
Early musicians:
The Arabic Yunus al-Katib (d. 765), and Ibrahim al-Mausili (d. 850)
The Persian Barbod (who lived in the tenth century AD)
Hundreds of treatises have been written by musicians, scientists, and philosophers, dealing
with the value and acceptability of music and the tuning of the modal scales.

Vernacular and Popular Music and the Diasporas

Tahkt literally platform; an ensemble of musicians, often including violin, santour,
ney, and two drums, used to accompany singing and sometimes dancing, in Arabic popular
Umm Kulthum (1908-1975) an Egyptian singer who achieved international prominence,
becoming a star of radio and film
Rai a modern popular music developed in Algeria and Morocco that combines
traditional singing styles and Arabic modes with Western-style synthesized
Arabesk in Turkish popular music, a traditional Middle Eastern sound symbolizing the
Turkish people's association with Islam and to older cultural traditions of the area
Alireza Mashayekhi the first Iranian composer of electronic music
Dervishes individuals associated with Sufism who dance by whirling to

achieve transcendence
Key Concepts for the Unit
Ideas about the Definition of Music:
Ideas about music are not universal. In the Middle East, music is generally considered an
indulgence and therefore not good. Musicians also are not publicly valued. Yet, there are a lot
of human sound phenomena that have musical content; although, they are not considered as
music within the culture. The people of the Middle East in general, by conceiving humanly
organized sound to exist on a continuum between recitation and music, from khandan to
musiqi, they have rationalized different types of sound as more or less acceptable. This
definition of musiqi is actually narrower than music in the West.
Ideas about the Nature of Musicianship:
In Western culture, professional musicians (some types more than others) are valued over
amateurs. In the Middle East, however, amateur musicians play what they want when they
want, and therefore maintain a higher status than professionals, who play to order.
Ways Musicians Learn to Improvise:
In Western culture, improvised music even has a tonal and structural framework. Arabic music
has maqam. The Iranian radif is an example of an articulated set of motifs used by musicians as
the basis for improvisation.

Listening Skills
Hearing Heterophony:
Ensembles comprise a small number of different musical instruments, and usually only one of
each. The music they play is a special kind of monophony called heterophony. Harmonization
is non-existent. In heterophony, each instrument plays the same tune, yet can be distinguished
by its particular sound texture and instrument-specific ornamentation; for example, a hammered
santour realizes a melody differently than a bowed kamancheh. Students should be able to pick
out the instruments by timbres and characteristics.
Understanding Improvisation:
Use CD examples of the Iranian radif to show how melodic patterns are used as building blocks
in improvisation.
Differentiating between Composed and Improvised Material:
Compare an avaz to a pishdaramad. In an avaz, a vocalist is accompanied sequentially by
various instrumentalists who lag slightly behind. In a pishdaramad, the entire ensemble plays a
single tune in heterophony.
Musical Texture:
Almost always heterophonic.
Singing Style:
Tense with harsh, throaty tone; highly ornamented but without vibrato; men sing high in their
range, and women low. Instrumental styles imitate vocal styles.
Melodic Organization:
Based on systems of modes called maqam (in Arabic countries) and dastgah (in Iran).
Rhythmic Organization:
Metric or non-metric, or somewhere in between.
Within a strict framework, its overall form is predetermined but its details are determined by
the improviser.
Chapter Summary
Cultural and musical values in the Middle East
Islam is the most distinctive feature of the Middle East as a cultural area, both as a religion
and as a way of life (although, of course, not all people who live in the region are Islamic and not all
Islamic countries are in the Middle East). Islam places an emphasis on the equality of men before
God, on urban life, on trade as an occupation, on extended family, and on the importance of language
and respect for scholarly pursuits. Music is regarded with ambivalence. Though there is no direct
proscription against music in the Koran, instrumental music in particular is discouraged as it is felt to
encourage licentious behavior.
Religious ambivalence has not prohibited musical activity. On the contrary, Middle Eastern
societies have found ways to reconcile the two by developing a system of musical values quite

different from our own.

Perhaps the most obvious difference is the definition of music, which is very narrow. In
Iran, for example, there are two words for what Western civilization calls music: khandan, to
recite, and musiqi, music. Khandan and musiqi are, in effect, two poles of a continuum:


By implication, genres such as Koran reading at the khandan end of the scale are more
acceptable than rhythmic instrumental genres such as belly dance at the musiqi end.
Play examples and have students place the music along the continuum. Other genres described in the
textbook, moving from Koran reading at the khandan end of the scale, include: zurkhaneh (traditional
Persian ceremonial exercises performed to the accompaniment of a drummer who chants from the epic
poem, Shahnameh), vocal avaz (non-metric improvisation), instrumental avaz (the same but
instrumental), vocal tasnif (metric and composed but vocal), pishdaramad (metric, composed, and
instrumental, but stately), chahar mezrab (virtuosic instrumental display), and finally belly dance
music (pure rhythmic instrumental music) at the extreme musiqi end of the scale.
Low status of musicians
Professional musicians are mostly specialists who acquire their skill through heredity rather
than by vocation. Many are members of non-Muslim minorities (who stand outside the social system
and thus dont count). Either way, they are not highly regarded.
High(er) status of music as an intellectual pursuit
While instrumental music may be lascivious, the scholarly study of music (which associates it
with language) is admired. This attitude has produced a vast number of treatises by informed
amateur scholars. Amateur musicians have a higher status than their professional counterparts
because they have the freedom to improvise at will, not according to the demand of their employer.
Listening Example
Chanting of the Holy Koran, rec. Chicago, 1973. Textbook CD1, track 4. Note the many silences that
break up the phrases as the performer chants the text.

Fade in
First phrase, relatively unornamented
Second phrase; slightly more ornamented
Brief silence
Third line, moving slightly up and then
dropping back in pitch
Higher pitched with much more


ornamentation and melisma (one syllable

sung over several notes) as the pitch drops
Completion of previous phrase
Leaps up and then descends again as the
piece fades out

Iranian music
Even to inexperienced listeners, Middle Eastern music has a fairly homogeneous sound. As
noted above, it is mainly monophonic andeven when playing togetherinstrumentalists tend to
reproduce the highly ornamented (vibrato-less), tense sound of singers. Although different terms are
used throughout the region, there is broad similarity between Iranian traditions and those of Arabic
and Turkish areas.
Common Iranian instruments
Setar (small long-necked lute with four strings), tar (heavy, long-necked lute with frets),
kamancheh (spiked fiddle), santour (hammered dulcimer), violin (played in the Western fashion), ney
(bamboo flute), and dombak or zarb (goblet-shaped drum).
Iranian improvisation
In Iran, learning classical music and learning to improvise are more or less synonymous. A
beginning musician will, over the course of about four years, memorize a body of material called the
radif. A radif (every teacher has an individual version) consists of around 300 pieces of music (called
gushehs). Most are quite short and organized according to twelve modes (or dastgahs). The radif
incorporates all the techniques and gestures necessary for improvisation: ways of transforming and
manipulating motifs, ways of moving from non-metric to metric sections, ways of repeating and
extending themes, etc. In fact, the radif is quite similar to an improvised piece, but once a musician
has mastered it, the radif should never be performed in public (if it was to be played from end to end,
however, it would take eight to ten hours). Good musicians use it as a point of departure for their own
improvisation, yet do not stray too far from its structure and run the risk of being criticized for not
knowing the radif.
Scales and arpeggios of Western music are good comparisons to the radif: musicians learn
and practice them assiduously, for they provide a technical basis for music performance, but
they never play them in public.
Radif - Basic repertoire used as foundation for composition and improvisation. Ideally
learned in three stages: simple, intermediate, complete. Subdivided into twelve modes or
Dastgah Each mode has a particular scale with a typical order of tones, an agreed musical/
non- musical character, a characteristic recurring melodic theme (daramad), and a repertoire
of short named melodies/melody skeletons (gushehs).
Draw a large rectangular box on the board representing the entire radif. Divide the box into twelve
columns, to represent the dastgahs, and then add ladder-like steps to one or two of them to represent
the gushehs contained within each dastgah. The first gusheh of each dastgah is the special
characteristic tune called daramads.
Although there is no codified system like the radif in Arabic and Turkish areas, their maqams

also embody motifs and musical gestures that form the basis for improvisation.
Typical Iranian performance
A full performance of one mode (or dastgah) ideally consists of five parts arranged in the
following order. The central piece of the performance is the improvised avaz.
Lit.: before the introduction. Stately, metric, composed, instrumental piece always
based on the radif, but may go through several gushehs.
Chahar mezrab:
Lit.: four plectrums. Fast, virtuosic solo instrumental piece, composed or
improvised, with rhythmic ostinato. May appear at this point or internally in an avaz.
Usually based only loosely on the radif.
Improvised and non-metric, may be instrumental or vocal. Based specifically on the radif.
Normally between three and eight gushehs are used.
Metric, composed song with words, may be performed instrumentally. May be based on the
radif, but only loosely.
Fast, composed instrumental dance-like piece. Loosely based on the radif.
Listening Examples
Iran: Chahar Mezrab in Mahour, performed on santour. Textbook CD1, track 5.

Energetic introduction on bass strings establishing regular beat


Short melodic phrase

Bass note figure
Phrase repeated
New phrase, slightly higher pitched
Bass notes
Descending phrase back to original starting note
Bass notes
Repeated, phrase, moving up in pitch, with second ending that drops in pitch, leading to
the next phrase
Descending phrase, left unresolved
Repeats and resolves to original pitch
Bass note pattern
New rolling melody
Repeats as music fades out


Iran: an Avaz in Shur. Textbook CD1, track 7.

Iran: Radif of Nour-Ali Boroumand (excerpt) on Dastgah of Chahargah. Textbook CD1, track 8.

Iran: 6 excerpts based on Daramad of Chahargah. Textbook CD1, track 11.

The last two tracks are based on the dastgah and daramad of Chahargah. The former starts with the
first daramad, which has a distinctive opening theme and a characteristic upward leap at the end (the
rest is basically filler material). Next is the second daramad, an expansion of the first, then a third
daramad, also known as zangouleh (connected to the daramad material because it starts off with the
daramad theme). Finally, there is a fourth daramad, which also extends the original daramad theme,
this time with a short figure that rises six steps sequentially. The latter track presents short excerpts of
the daramad of Chahargah. Although each version is individual, the essential characteristics of the
daramad can be heard. The latter only includes the first and second daramads; the highly distinctive
third and fourth daramads are omitted.

Santour (Heydari)

Main motif

Special rhythmic
Kereshmeh: EQ
EQ EEQ Q where
E= eight note Q=
quarter note



0:38, 1:00




1:16, 1:53




2:05 twice, 2:45



Setar (Ebadi)

3:22, 3:30

Metric, chahar,
mezrab style


Setar (Ebadi)

4:00, 4:12


Strong, uses
appears 3 times in
a row; deliberate
tempo, note pause
at 0:24
Begins slow,
lyrical; at 0:58,
begins metric
rendition of main
deliberate, very
ornamented; note
pizzicato plucked
notes (1:25; 1:39);
ascending melodic
sequence (a few
notes repeated at
increasingly higher
pitch levels)
Slow, deliberate;
low-pitched; very
rubato; note
double-stops (at
approx. 2:15, 2:20)
Changeable mood;
begins metric,
moves (3:22) to
slow, lyrical, and
(3:44) to rapid-fire
delivery in style of
Chahar mezrab.
emphatic. Uses
kereshmeh rhythm:
at 4:00, 4:12

Recommended Listening
Iran: Musique persane. Ocora C559008.
This comprises complete performances of the dastgahs of Mahour and Segah. In the latter, the
chahar mezrab is played on tar (accompanied by dombak drum); the avaz is vocal.
Iran: Persian Classical Music. Elektra Nonesuch Explorer Series, 9-72060-2.
This recording also includes two tasnifs in Segah. The full ensemble plays a short introduction,
an interlude, and a reng in addition to accompanying the singer.
Intgrale de la musique savante persane (The integral repertory of Persian Art Music): Radif. al sur
Mdia 7, ALCD 116 ALCD 120.
Although this 1994 French five-CD set may be difficult to find, it is definitely worth the effort.
It comprises a complete version of the radif as presented by the setar player Dariush Talai.
The discs are invaluable, because each gusheh is given its own track number, which makes
finding and listening to a particular gusheh relatively easy. The publishers address is listed as
Mdia 7, 15 rue des Goulvents, 92000 Nanterre, France.
A performance in any maqam may modulate to another maqam. In Arabic and Turkish music,
each maqam has certain others to which a musician would typically move. Thus, if you perform in
Nahawand, you are likely to move to Rast, Hijaz, and Ajam, but not typically to others.
Listening Examples
Arabic: Taqsim Nahawand. Performed by A. Jihad Racey on bouzouq. Textbook CD1, track 10.
An excerpt from the beginning of a taqsim in the maqam of Nahawand. The entire performance
consists of six sections.

The initial section of the taqsim. The performer

begins in the low part of the range, in moderate
tempo, and gradually moves higher, and finally
moves down to a characteristic closing formula,
then pauses.

0:26-0:30 and 0:31-0:34

Two very brief groups of transitional notes which

the performer seems to be using to help him
create the beginning of the next section.


The second main section. Some of the musical

gestures of the first section reappear here, but as a
whole it is pitched higher, moves a bit more
rapidly, and moves between the higher and lower
tones more rapidly.


Closing formula, very similar to that of 0:230:25.

Arabic: Illustrations of Major Maqams. Performed by A. Jihad Racy. Textbook CD1, track 6.

This track contains a number of the most important Arabic maqams: Nahawand, Rast, Bayati,
Hijazkar, Sika, and Saba. Telling them apart is not easy for the uninitiated listener, but one may learn
to identify a maqam by its special characteristics, such as the three-quarter tone that sounds slightly
out of tune to the Western ear in Rast; the augmented second of Hijazkar, making it sound to Western
ears, sad and exotic; the compressed diminished fourth in Saba; in Sika it is hard to decide which tone
is the fundamental tone, or tonic; the rather conventional Western minor sound of Nahawand.

Nahawand (Example I, 10 is a longer sampling of
Rast (2 sections)


Bayati (3 sections)


Hijazkar (3 sections)


Sika (2 sections)


Saba (2 sections), played on the nei

Rhythmic Structure
In metric and nonmetric music, the main stresses occur on the first beat and secondary beat halfway
through; for example:




Music of the Dervishes

Examples contained in CD1, tracks 12 and 13, illustrate Turkish composed, metric classical
music used to accompany the ceremony of the dancing dervishes. They are excerpts of a work by the
composer Mesut Cemil (1902-1963), and performed by a duet of kanun (a plucked zither with 75
strings grouped in courses of three tuned to the same pitch) and tanbur (a long-necked lute with a
round body, four pairs of strings, and about 25 frets per octave). The first excerpt has a meter of ten
beats in a moderate tempo; it can be identified by beating along with the music. You can see that the
music usually moves along in groups of 3 + 3 + 4 beats. The second example has a much quicker
tempo and uses seven beats per metric unit. Beating quickly will give you a grouping of 2 + 2 + 3, or
you may feel it in three short units: short- short-long.
Vernacular and Popular Music
Typically, a female singer will be accompanied by a small ensemble of traditional and
Western instruments that play in unison with her while also providing some very simple, rudimentary
Western harmony.
Some of these singers went far beyond the music halls. In the period since World War II, a
small number of Middle Eastern singers more women than men gained great prominence,
contradicting the Islamic ambivalence toward music and particularly toward public performance by
women. Most famous by far among them was Umm Kulthum (1908-1975), an Egyptian woman who

achieved international prominence. Kulthum became a star of radio and film as well as of stage and
the record industry. Her songs, composed for her by prominent composers, became widely known
throughout the Islamic world, and thus qualify as "popular" music. But her singing was based on
classical Arabic models and included improvisatory passages. At the same time, she was accompanied
by orchestras consisting in large part of Western instruments playing in a European-derived style.
Listening Example
Arabic: Ya Zalimni (excerpt). Sung by Umm Kulthum, with orchestral accompaniment. CD1, track 9.

Fade in on first verse; voice paralleled by string section of orchestration with flute
and Middle Eastern sounding percussion. At approx. 0:05, a member of the
audience calls out in response to the music.
Short instrumental tag
New verse
Last word of vocal line is repeated by audience
Again, end of vocal line is repeated by audience
Slightly more ornamentation in vocal line
Same instrumental tag is performed as at 0:12 to fade out

The Middle East encompasses a large, diverse geographical and cultural area, and is generally
known as the heartland of Arab and Islamic cultures.
Although very diverse, Middle Eastern music generally is highly improvised, with a single
melody played by all instruments simultaneously in heterophony.
Vocal and instrumental music is generally highly ornamented, featuring trills, glissandos, or
short secondary notes.
Vocal music predominates.
The primary instrument is the oud, a type of lute.
The most common musical form is the suite, a grouping of individual pieces.
The best music is thought to inspire a trance-like, higher experience of life.
Maqam (or a system of scales) are used as the basis of all melodic creation.
There is a strict hierarchy observed between types of music and performers, with talented
amateur musicians usually coming from a higher social class.
Professional or popular musicians are typically looked down upon.
Discussion Questions
1. On a sliding scale, as between khandan and musiqi, where can we place different
types of American music, from church hymns to punk rock?
2. What are some similarities between Middle Eastern and Indian music improvisation?
3. What are the differences between Middle Eastern and Indian ensemble textures?
4. What are the similarities and differences between the Middle Eastern chordophones
and chordophones found elsewhere throughout the word?
5. How can Middle Eastern music improvisation be compared to jazz or blues
improvisation? What are the similarities between the tonal and rhythmic structures?
6. What is the commonality of beliefs in Christianity, Hinduism and Islam, concerning
the origin of their vocal and instrument music?
Recommended DVDs and Videos

Music of the Middle East, by Educational Video Network (DVD 2004) (21 min.). Re-release of an
earlier 1960s film documentary about Middle Eastern instruments.
Breaking the Silence: Music in Afghanistan, directed by Simon Broughton, Dunya (2002) (60 min.).
Under the Taliban regime in Afghanistan musical instruments were destroyed and burned. The only
music allowed was unaccompanied Taliban chants. Breaking the Silence was shot in Kabul just after
the fall of the Taliban regime and portrays, among other things, the first concerts in the bombed-out
Umm Kulthum: A Voice Like Egypt, directed by Michael Goldman, AFD (2007) (67 min.). Umm
Kulthum was a powerful symbol of the aspirations of her country, Egypt, and then of the entire Arab
World. Narrated by Omar Sherif, it is the first documentary to bring the celebrated diva of the Arab
world to an American audience. The film puts her life in the context of the epic story of 20th century
Egypt as it shook off colonialism and confronted modernity.

China has a long musical tradition documented in historical and notated sources. Traditional
Chinese music depends more on memorization, repetition, idiomatic realization, and embellishment of
standard instrumental pieces, rather than on improvisation. The music for Peking (or Beijing) Opera
contains sound codes that emphasize the drama created by combinations of instruments. While
Confucianism revered proper sounding music for inducing correct social behavior in ancient times, the
Communist Chinese in the 20th century exercised a similar philosophy by filling songs with
propaganda. Much Chinese music and many of its instruments derived from interactions of the
numerous minorities over thousands of years, and their music further developed into standard
A Billion and a Quarter People, Includes 56 Recognized Minorities
Han the worlds largest ethnic group that comprises more than 93% of Chinas
Putuaghua the Han language, in the West known as Mandarin
Zhuang, Mongolian, Manchu, Tibetan, Hui, Uyghur, Kazak, Tarter, Kirgiz, Tajik, Uzbek

Capital municipality of the Peoples Republic of China

Bei means, north; jing means, capital
Yuan Dynasty (1206-1368), Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) based
in Beijing
Jingju literally capitol theater, Peking Opera the main type of Chinese popular
musical theater that first emerged in the Chinese capital Beijing (Peking) in the late
eighteenth century
Liyuan literally Pear Garden, the metaphor for theater
Qing chang singing without staging, costume, or make-up, practiced publicly by jingju
Jinghu literally capital fiddle; a two-string spiked fiddle, the principal melodic
instrument in jingju
Nan ban zi an aria introduction played by a jinghu

The Qin and Its Music

Qin (pronounced chin) a Chinese seven-stringed zither most revered and patronized by
the educated class. Originally an instrument for court music (elegant music; yayue), it later
came to be played in privacy by scholars for contemplation, self-purification, and selfregulation. It has no frets or bridges, but thirteen position-markers called hui.
Jinzhi- literally forbidden finger, it is the pinky finger that cannot be used in qin
Wenzipu prose tablature for qin, describing the techniques required for producing every
Jianzipu qin abbreviated-character tablature, consisting of clusters of symbols
Dapu literally to obtain from the notation; the process of reconstructing ancient pieces
from qin tablature with the aid of oral tradition
Sanqi introduction to a qin piece
Rudiao the exposition of a qin piece
Ruman the variations section, or development, of a qin piece

Fuqi restatement of the theme

Weisheng literally tail sounds; the short coda that concludes a qin piece, using the
strings harmonics produced by lightly touching the strings

The Pipa and Its Music

Pipa a four-stringed, fretted lute with a bent neck and pear-shaped body; an imported
instrument to Han China, originally from the Kucha Kingdom (an ancient Uyghur
kingdom). It developed an important repertory by the time of the Sui and Tang periods
(581-618 and 618-905). It has 23 to 25 frets placed along the neck and the sound board. Its
pieces have programmatic titles.
Yan yue banquet entertainment music
Wen lyrical, civil
Wu martial
Winds and Strings Ensembles in Shanghai
Jiangnan sizhua type of Chinese chamber instrumental ensemble made up of strings and
winds, popular in the areas around Shanghai
Jiangnan literally means, south of the river, in reference to the Yangzi River
Si literally means, silk; in reference to string instruments (strings were once made of
silk, but now made of steel for louder volume)
Zhu literally means, bamboo; in reference to wind instruments made of bamboo
Jiangnan sizhu ensembles contain
o One pipa
o One or two sanxian (three-stringed lute with long, fretless neck and oval sound box)
o One qinqin (lute with a long, fretted neck)
o One or two erhu (two-stringed fiddles with hollow wooden cylindrical sound boxes
having one side covered with snake-skin)
o One yangqin (a dulcimer struck with a pair of bamboo sticks)

One dizi (a transverse bamboo flute with six finger-holes, a mouth hole, and another
hole covered by a thin membrane that vibrates to give the instrument a reedy sound)
One xiao (an end-blown bamboo flute with five frontal finger-holes, one hole in the
back, and a blowing hole at the top)
One sheng (a free-reed mouth organ made of a series of bamboo pipes arranged in a
circle, each with a reed in its lower end, and all inserted into a base made of copper,
wood, or gourd, to which the mouthpiece is attached. Two or more tones may be
produced simultaneously.)

gu (a small flat drum) and the ban (a pair of wooden clappers) both played by one
o muyu (wooden fish carved idiophone struck by a pair of wooden sticks)
o pongzhong (a pair of small hand-bells)
Fangman jiahua literally, making slow and adding flowers; when tunes are expanded
by slowing down the original melody and inserting long embellishments
in the rhythmic space

Jingju Theater (Capital Theater, or Peking Opera in the West)

includes arias, recitative-like short phrases, and heightened speech
Heightened speech - a stylized stage speech with steeply rising and falling contours that
exaggerate the natural intonation of spoken Chinese

Sheng the male role

Dan the female role
Jing the painted face role
Chou the male comic role
Jingju instrumental music describes dramatic situation, spatial dimensions of the setting,
moods, and psychological makeup of characters
Wenchang literally civic instrumentation; melodic instruments in jingju played as
introductions to and accompanying aria melodies:
o Jinghu a two-string fiddle and principal melodic instrument in jingju; literally
capital fiddle
o Erhu two-stringed fiddle with a hollow wooden cylindrical sound boxes having
one side covered with snake-skin
o Yue qin four-stringed plucked lute with a round sound box
o Sanxian three-stringed lute with long, fretless neck and oval sound box
o Ruan large plucked lute with a round sound box
o Dizi transverse flute
o Sheng mouth organ
o Suona conical double-reed oboe

Wuchang literally military instrumentation; percussion instruments played to provide

rhythmical punctuation for movements and singing, entrances of dramatic personages,
fights and battles, and sound effects:
o Danpigu a single-headed drum
o Ban a paired wooden clapper (danpigu and ban are played by one person who
functions as conductor)
o Daluo a big gong that produces a falling pitch
o Xiaoluo a small gong that produces a rising pitch
o Naoba a small pair of cymbals
o Datangu a big barrel drum
o Xiaotangu a small barrel drum
o Muyu wooden fish

Ban literally beat; a melody-rhythmic type for jingju arias

Xipi - a ban for jingju arias, employing both pentatonic and heptatonic scales, wherein the
articulation of the first syllable in each phrase always coincides with beat 3 of a measure,
while the first syllable coincides with beat 1
Erhuang a ban for jingju arias, employing a heptatonic scale with a raised fourth degree
and a lowered seventh, in a moderate tempo usually in tragic or lyrical scenes. The first
syllables of a phrase always start on the first beat of a measure.

The Value and Functions of Music

Musical gratification is equated with the taste for food, the need for sex, and aesthetic
Music is integrated into rituals, banquets, weddings, funerals, harvest celebrations, and so
Kong Fuzi Master Kong, known as Confucius in the West (551-479 B.C.E.). He
maintained that music has positive and negative powers to stimulate related behavior and
Shi yin proper sound, features harmoniousness, peacefulness, and appropriateness
Chi yue extravagant music, having attributes of inappropriate loudness, wanton
noisiness, stimulating excessive and licentious behavior
Mao Zedong (1893-1976) Chairman of the Communist Party from 1949-1976, like
Confucius, viewed music as an educational tool, applying it for the propaganda of state

The Communists discredited scholarly music for its affiliation with feudal society, but
promoted folk music as the music of the workers.
Before 1949, professional musicians had low social status while the educated amateur was
revered. Under Communism, the opposite was regarded.

New Musical Directions in the 20th Century

Kang Youwei (1858-1927) and Liang Qichao (1873-1929) music educators who
established classroom music in China based on Western models
Xiao Youmei (1884-1940) reformed Chinese music by incorporating Western elements,
notably harmony
Zhao Yuanren (1892-1982) the creator of the modern Chinese art song
Songs of the Masses Chinese Communist political songs
Jiang Qing (1913-1991) wife of Mao Zedong, who reformed jingju by incorporating
elements of western orchestral and harmonic practice, ballet, scenic design, and replacing
traditional stories with revolutionary plots
The Rise of Popular Music
Liuxing gequ Shanghai popular song of the 1920s, implementing jazz and western
Canto Pop Cantonese popular song inspired by White rock of the 1950s
Xibeifeng literally northwestern wind; popular music with a disco beat from the loess
plateau of northwest China
Tongsu yinyue light popular music
Cui Jian the most famous Chinese rock musician whose music rejected the materialism
that swept China in the 1980s, culminating in the Tiananmen Square uprising in 1989
Zhong jinshu Chinese heavy metal music
Mongolian Music
Topshuur a two-stringed plucked lute
Morin huur a two-stringed spiked fiddle with horsed-head decoration on the top of the
Tsuur end-blown flute
Hmi singing style that produces a whistle like melody by changing the shape of the
oral cavity in order to reinforce selected overtones of a sung drone
Mei sheng Western bel canto singing style
Key Concepts for the Unit
Importance of Written Language and History:
A non-alphabetic ideographic script meant that Chinese could be used by neighbors with totally
different languages, and that classics written centuries earlier could be understood by
contemporary readers. This led to a great regard for history, high status for scholar-officials,
and an imperial state system based on bureaucracy. Each dynasty had its own historical records,
much of which provided musical documentation.
Highly Specific Musical Systems with Codification at Many Levels:
This includes stock character types in theatrical genres, particular musical styles used in
specific contexts, instruments used in standardized ensembles, solo instrumental traditions, each
with its own special notation, repertoire, and idiomatic technique.
Music and Politics:
Music and politics have long been interconnected. Confucius (551-479 B.C.E.) believed that

proper music (i.e., ritual music played in unison with long, broad rhythms, slow tempo, and
simple melodies) was capable of promoting proper behavior, while extravagant music (i.e.,
loud, fast music) could stimulate excessive, licentious behavior. Mao Zedong also believed in
music as an important educational tool for the propagation of state ideology, rather than the
expression of virtue.
Listening Skills
Heterophonic Ensemble Music:
The Jiangnan sizhu ensemble, like Middle Eastern groups, comprises a small number of
different musical instruments. The music is heterophonic, for there is no harmony, just different
renditions of the same tune, each distinguished by its own sound texture and by ornamentation
specific to the instrument. Students should pick out the tune by humming it, if possible, and
explain the simultaneously played characteristic renditions in their writing, or verbally in a
Solo Instrumental Traditions:
Comparison of qin and pipa music shows that vastly different musical styles were cultivated by
different classes for different purposes.
Chapter Section Summaries
In historical documents, the qin has been the most important instrument, associated with the
intellectual class. Its symbolic construction, decoration, playing technique, and lore are an extension
of an ideological system combining Confucianism, Taoism and Buddhism. Accordingly, playing the
qin should be an act of contemplation, self-purification, and self-regulation, and it should be played in
privacy, either amidst nature or in ones library. Playing techniques include various ways of plucking
the strings with the right hand and stopping them with the left hand. Elaborate systems developed to
notate qin music: wenzipu is prose tablature and jiangzipu is abbreviated-character tablature; however
none of these notations instruct the duration of tones and thus, the rhythmic interpretation becomes
left to the performer, interpreted through a process called dapu, which is the interpretation of the
tablature through oral tradition.
Qin compositions are made up of four to five sections:
Sanqi Introduction; slowly in free rhythm; introduces the mode
Rudiao Entering the music; exposition; establishes meter and introduces the motives; the motives
are varied by extension, reduction, and changes in timbre, tempo, and register. It is the longest and
most substantial section.
Ruman Becoming slower; development. The motives undergo further rhythmic variation.
Modulation to other keys may occur.
Fuqi Restatement; recapitulation. It occurs only in large compositions; it restates and reinterprets
motivic material from the rudiao.
Weisheng Tail sounds; coda; utilizes harmonics and slackening of tempo; it reiterates important
tones of the composition

Listening Example
Lui Shui (Flowing Water), played by Prof. Wu Wenguang, on the qin. Textbook CD 1, track 14.
Liu Shui (Flowing Water) is a famous composition for the qin. The performer is
Professor Wu
Wenguang of the China Conservatory of Music in Beijing, the foremost qin player in China today. Wu
Wenguang studied the qin under his late father, the famous qin master Professor Wu Jingle, and this
performance is based on his 1960 interpretation of the tablature notated in a handbook dated 1876,
entitled Tian Wen Ge Qinpu (Tian Wen Ge Studio Qin Handbook). It is a rhapsodic piece of
descriptive music portraying a waterfall cascading from a mountain top, falling through various levels
of rock, and then becoming a rapids eventually running out to the sea.
The composition of Flowing Water is attributed to Boya, a great qin master who lived
during the Spring and Autumn period (770-476 BCE). Boyas friend Zhong Ziqi was an attentive and
imaginative listener to Boyas music. As the story goes, when Boya played the piece Flowing
Water and conjured up the scene of a high mountain in his mind, Zhong Ziqi right away got the idea
and said: Ah! I am thinking of Mount Tai (Chinas tallest and most sacred mountain). When Boya
thought of flowing water as he played, Zhong Ziqi echoed his thought and said: How excellent!
broadly flowing rivers and streams.
When sometime later, Zhong Ziqi died, Boya felt that nobody could match his understanding
of the music he played and so he broke his qin and never played again. Thus, the deeper meaning of
this piece is as a symbol of deep friendship. From this story arose the phrase zhi yin, literally
meaning a good friend who understands my music, and it is still popularly used today to signify
profound friendship.

Sanqi: melody played with much use of portamento, some pitches reinforced by
lower octave; in free rhythm


More regular rhythm with melody in harmonics


Rudiao: melody in normal pitches with faster tempo and wide, sweeping portamenti


Tempo picks up


Ruman: melody and portamenti are embedded in a strumming accompaniment

produced by sweeping across all strings, culminating at 315 in a noisy strummed
portamento that dissipates in a decrescendo and diminuendo to 330


Passage of harmonics, proceeding to strumming style of preceding section and

again concluding with a passage of noisy strumming


Weisheng: final coda of harmonics

The pipa and its music provide an interesting contrast to the intellectual aura of the qin. Like
the qin, the pipa has a long history but is associated with professional entertainers rather than scholars.
The pipa is a four-stringed, pear-shaped, plucked lute with a bent neck held upright on the players lap
and played with the fingers. It is an instrument from the ancient Kucha Kingdom, one of the Uyghur
kingdoms, where it was held horizontally and played with picks on five fingers. Starting in the Sui and

Tang dynasties (581-618 and 618-905), it became the most popular solo and ensemble instrument for
refined entertainment. It also became an important accompanying instrument for music drama and
Pipa Techniques:
Tremolo - produced by rapidly and continuously plucking a string with all five fingers
consecutively - Portamento (sliding from note to note) - produced by deflection of a string
before or after it has been plucked
Percussive pizzicato - produced when a string is plucked violently enough to cause it to
snap against the body of the instrument
Percussive strumming of all four strings
Solo pipa music is characterized by flexible tempos, frequent use of dynamic variation, and an almost
improvised quality. The traditional repertoire is divided into two classes: big pieces (which may be
through-composed, themes with variations, or even alternating song-like and percussive sections) and
small pieces (usually sectional, comprising 60 to 100 beats). The repertoire is further subdivided
into wen (lyrical) and wu (martial) styles; the former being slow to moderate and expressive, the latter
being fast, loud, and percussive. Many pieces have programmatic titles; some of these contain
descriptive musical elements directly related to their titles, others are more abstract and only bear a
poetic relationship to their titles.
Recommended Listening
Shi Mian Mai Fu (Ambush from Ten Sides). From Floating Petals ... Wild Geese ... The Moon on
High: Music of the Chinese Pipa. Nonesuch H-72085, A/1; also (on videotape) in the JVC Video
Anthology of World Music and Dance (3/2).
Shi Mian Mai Fu is a famous, particularly exciting, and frequently recorded wu-style piece,
portraying a famous historical battle (from around 200 B.C.E.) between the Chu and the Han. In the
JVC Video Anthology (3/2), close-up camera shots provide excellent illustrations not only of playing
techniques, but also of the virtuosity of modern conservatory-trained performers. According to the
Nonesuch liner notes, the first part of the piece depicts military movements of the Chu army, complete
with special effects describing fifes, drums, and cannons. The second part depicts the ambush of the
Chu by the Han and subsequent skirmishes, which eventually escalate into full battle. As a
programmatic description, a wide range of percussive effects for pipa are used to represent the sounds
of battlefrom artillery fire to the wailing of the wounded.
Jiangnan sizhu
Jiangnan sizhu is performed during the afternoons at Shanghai teahouses. Jiangnan literally
means south of the river, and sizhu (si-, silk and -zhu, bamboo) ensembles comprise string,
wind, and percussion instruments. The silk (string) instruments include pipa, sanxian, qin qin, erhu,
and yang qin, while the bamboo (wind) instruments comprise dizi, xiao, and sheng. The ensemble is
completed with a few percussion instruments: gu and ban (played by one person), muyu, and
Amateur club members (who rarely bring their own instruments) sit facing each other around
a small table. The small repertoirecentered around the Eight Great Famous Pieces (Ba Da Qu)is
played from memory. There is no formal instruction: younger players learn by imitation, joining older
musicians when they are thought to be ready. Each piece starts slowly and gradually accelerates to
finish in a fast tempo. The musical texture is heterophonic; all instrumentalists play the same melody,
but each instrument embellishes it according to its idiomatic conventions.

Listening Examples
Excerpt from Hua San Liu (Embellished Three-Six). Textbook CD1, track 15. (Originally from
Popular Jiangnan Music. Hong Kong Records, HK 6.30094, A/1.)
In this selection, the beginning and conclusion of the first part of this piece is played. Notice
the heterophonic texture: all melody instruments play the same tune, but each adds its own distinctive
embellishments. There is a gradual increase in tempo through the course of the piece. Instruments
include dizi (transverse flute), yangqin (hammer dulcimer), pipa (4-stringed, plucked lute), and erhu
(two- stringed fiddle).

Introduction: In free rhythm, dizi stands out

because of distinctive timbre and greater


Melody now in regular meter. Listen for slight

differences in ornamentation and tuning among
the different instruments; fades at 1:30-1:33.


Fades into end of first section in faster tempo.


Dizi jumps to upper register while other two

instruments continue to play the melody in the
usual range; concluding ritard just before ending.

Recommended Listening
Compare Hua San Liu (Embellished Three-Six) to San Liu (Three Six). Both appear on the
CD San Liu: Jiangnan Silk and Bamboo Music (China Record Co. SCD-041). The former is an
elaborated version of the latter.
Lau Liu Ban, Man Liu Ban, and Zhonghua Liu Ban complex. Man Liu Ban can be found on
San Liu: Jiangnan Silk and Bamboo Music; Zhonghua Liu Ban is included in Sizhu Silk Bamboo:
Chamber Music of South China. Pan Records PAN 2030 CD. The pieces are expanded: Lau Liu
Ban (Old Eight Beats) is transformed into Man Liu Ban (Slow Eight Beats) and Zhonghua
Liu Ban (Moderately Ornamented Eight Beats).
Xunfeng Qu (Warm Wind Melody). Track 2 on Sizhu Silk Bamboo: Chamber Music of South
China. Pan Records PAN 2030 CD, 1994. A cipher-note transcription can be found in Appendix D (p.
100) in Alan Thrashers article, Structural Continuity in Chinese Sizhu: The Baban Model, in Asian
Music 20/2 (1989): 67-106. In this particular recording, the piece can be heard in expanded and plain
versions. With its catchy melody, the students could sing or follow the cipher notation to see how the
process of expansion and contraction works.
Jingju Theater
A form of musical theater that emerged as a national style in the 19th century, jingju combines
plots, stylized gestures, acrobatics, makeup, costumes, and simple props. There are about two hundred
traditional plays in the repertoire, the plots of which are drawn mainly from popular legends, historical
events, novels, and other narratives. Characters are drawn from a repertoire of stock types, each type

distinguished by costume, makeup, style of singing, and speech. The main role types are sheng (male),
dan (female), jing (painted face), and chou (clown). Their respective subcategories, divided according
to sex, age, and social status, are xiaosheng (young male), laosheng (old male), wusheng (male
warrior), qingyi (mature woman), huadan (young lady), wudan (female warrior), laodan (old woman).
The instrumental ensemble is divided into two groups, one melodic, the other percussive. The
wenchang (civic) ensemble includes strings (jinghu, erhu, yue qin, and small sanxian), winds (dizi,
sheng, and large and small suonas), and one percussion instrument, a gong, the yunluo. Wenchang
provides introductions and interludes for arias, accompanies arias, and performs incidental music for
dance and mimed movements. There is a high level of specificity: each individual piece is associated
with a particular dramatic situation and mood, and each requires different playing techniques from the
various string instruments. The arias are based on thirty preexistent skeletal tune-and-rhythm pattern
types called ban. By setting a ban to a new melody, a new aria is produced. Arias are sung for
narrative, lyrical, animated, dramatic, or interjective purposes. Of the two main types of ban, erhuang
are generally used for lyrical or tragic scenes while xipi, rhythmically livelier and more varied, can be
used in many other dramatic situations.
The wuchang (military) percussion ensemble includes danpigu and ban (played by one
person), daluo, xiaoluo, and naoba. For special effects datangu (large barrel drum), xiaotangu (small
barrel drum), and muyu (wooden fish) are used. Over sixty conventional rhythmic patterns and special
combinations of percussion instruments are used to indicate different dramatic situations,
atmospheres, or moods.
Listening Examples
Three examples of Peking Opera arias. Textbook CD1, tracks 16, 17, & 18.
1. Qingyi role, narrative aria, xipi category The articulation of the first syllable in each
phrase coincides with beat 3 of the measure, while the first syllable coincides with beat 1.
2. Jing role, dramatic aria, xipi category
3. Laosheng role, lyrical aria, erhuang category The first syllable of the phrases starts on the
first beat of the measures.
Songs for the Masses
In the early part of the 20th century, simple, didactic, march-like songs with words reflecting
patriotism, discipline, and good citizenship were introduced to Chinese school children. In the 1920s,
the May 4th Movement, which was a protest group led by a new intellectual class centered at Beida
(National Peking University), adopted this simple musical structure, replacing the words with
messages about current politics. By the mid-1920s, as Marxism-Leninism impacted the intellectual
circle, songs became used for propaganda. The war against Japan (1937-45) provided an opportunity
for new protest songs to develop, and widely disseminated through films, they became popular on a
mass scale. After the establishment of the Peoples Republic in 1949, the production of Songs for the
Masses became an important function of state propaganda.
Another accomplishment of the intellectuals at National Peking University was their
collection of Chinese folk music, their promotion of vernacular Chinese as a medium of
communication, their development of a new popular literature, and their new repertoire of vernacular
poems set to music.
Listening Example
We Workers Have Strength, composed by Ma Ke. Textbook CD 1, track 20. (Originally from

Commune Members Are All Like Sunflowers. China Records, M-2265, A/2.)
Words with a message, solo-chorus interchanges, symphonic orchestration, and Western harmony
laced with Chinese pentatonic themes are typical of this style.

Western-style orchestral introduction

Solo vocal line
Choral response
Solo vocal line
Choral response
Chorus sung by all
Rapid back and forth between soloist and chorus
All together
More rapid interchanges between solo and chorus
Final refrain all together (Track fades as two vocalists begin singing the next verse)

Popular music
The popular songs (liuxing gequ) that were written in cosmopolitan Shanghai in the 1920s
were hybrids of jazz, Hollywood film songs, Broadway numbers, modern Chinese school songs, and
popular Chinese urban ballads. Although the words and melodies were composed by local Chinese,
they were often set to lush orchestrations by immigrant White Russians who fled the Bolshevik
Revolution. Censored after 1949, liuxing gequ were denounced by the Communist Party as the dregs
of imperialists and capitalists. Popular music has undergone a massive revival since the early 1980s.
Central government experiments with a limited market economy have stimulated the growth of a
Chinese pop music industry, heavily influenced by westernized popular music from Taiwan and Canto
Pop from Hong Kong. There is currently a proliferation of new genres (some with regional
associations), espousing politically correct messages, produced by the government-sponsored music
industry. At the same time, a small group of underground rock musicians (the most famous of
whom is Cui Jian) use music as a vehicle for dissent.
Chinese civilization dates back many centuries and includes many
different ethnic groups, cultures, and languages.
Key instruments include the qin (zither) and pipa (lute).
Traditional musical performances such as tea house music
are found in public places, performed by amateurs and professionals
alike; the audience comes and goes as it pleases, often talking during
a performance; and the melodies are often highly improvised, with no
announced program.
Jingju (or Peking Opera) is one of Chinas best known
theatrical/musical styles, featuring elaborate sets and costumes, and a
richly developed sung repertory.
Good music maintains the proper social order and underlines the
beliefs endorsed by the state; bad music leads to improper behavior
or to criticism of the status quo.
The rise of Communism and the successful 1949 revolution
introduced a new, didactic type of music meant to instill the
governments core message to the citizenry, drawing on Soviet
As Chinese society has opened up somewhat following the Cultural

Revolution of the 60s and early 70s, Western art music and popular
songs have become more accepted, although there remains an
underground of unacceptable musical styles, many of which
question the validity of the states power.
Discussion Questions

How could we say that minority music affected mainstream music in our country the way
it did in China?
To which Western musical instrument would you compare qin practice, and why?
What are some comparisons in the Western music repertoire to programmatic pipa music?
What could be a Western equivalent to Jiangnan sizhu? (jazz, jam sessions?)
In what ways can we compare jingju to Western opera or a Broadway musical?
What are some Western equivalents to ban in the construction of new songs and works?
How is music used for propaganda in our country?
Or, how is music used to instill values in our country?
Why did Communists censure Confucian musical practices?
Conversely, why did the Communists during the Cultural Revolution (1966-76) utilize
Western musical practices such as orchestration, harmony, ballet, and scenic design, in spite
of being anti- Western?

Recommended DVDs and Videos

JVC Video Anthology of World Music and Dance, East Asia Regional Set. Produced by Ichikawa
Katsumori, directed by Nakagawa Kunihiko, edited by Fujii Tomoaki, English language version in
collaboration with Smithsonian/Folkways Recordings, distributed by Rounder Records (1990).
Chinese Folk Music and Chinese Folk Songs. Guangzhou Beauty Culture Communication Co. Ltd.
(2006) (59. min). This documentary introduces Chinese folk music and musical instruments, their
development and genres. A number of Chinese nationalities are represented.
Education of a Singer at the Beijing Opera. Produced by Films for the Humanities and Sciences,
Princeton, NJ (1994).

Traditional Japanese music genres have long histories but have changed little in hundreds of
years. In a modern world, it could be perceived as stagnation, but it is in fact the reflection of the
Japanese value of stability. Performances are uniform with great decorum. Music types include court
music, musical drama, chamber music, and chant. Traditional Japanese music is performed today in
recital halls inside great department stores in the Ginza area of Tokyo. The music is primarily
pentatonic with auxiliary pitches.
Hogaku Japanese traditional music
Gagaku Japanese court orchestral music, developed in the Heian period (794-1185)
Noh Japanese classical drama, developed in the Muromachi period (1333-1615)
Kabuki Japanese musical drama, developed in the Tokugawa or Edo period (1603-1867)
Bunraku Japanese musical puppet plays
Sokyoku koto music, developed in the Edo period
Sankyoku trio of koto, shamisen, and shakuhachi
Koto a thirteen-stringed zither with moveable bridges
Shamisen a three-stringed, long-necked, fretless lute, plucked with a large plectrum
Shakuhachi end-blown flute with four finger-holes, one thumb-hole, and a notch cut in
the lip; originally and exclusively played by wandering masterless samurai
Ryuteki transverse flute associated with gagaku
Nokhan transverse flute associated with noh drama; seven finger-holes and a mouth hole
Fue a transverse flute
Hichiriki short double-reed oboe
Sho a mouth organ with seventeen pipes like the Chinese sheng
Kabuki (theater)
Kabukiza built in 1887, the most famous Kabuki theater in Tokyo (za means seat).
(Eight or nine productions a year, each of which lasts about 25 days. Usually two different
programs are performed daily. Matinees run from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and evening
performances run from 4:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.)
Degatari the onstage musicians in kabuki
Geza the offstage orchestra in kabuki who produce the sound effects
Chobo the pair of onstage musicians, one who narrates and the second who accompanies
him on the shamisen
Debayashi literally coming-out orchestra; a music group in kabuki that comes out
onstage to accompany a specific scene
Nagauta a lyric genre of shamisen music, also sung in unison chorus in kabuki
Kyogenkata the man who plays the woodblocks (hyoshigi) in accelerated beats to
announce the rise of the curtain in kabuki
O-daiko large drum of the geza orchestra
Bunraku (puppet plays)
Gidayubushi the narrative style used in bunraku, named after its developer Takemoto
Gidayu (1651- 1714)
Chikamatsu Monzaemon (1653-1725) a famous bunraku playwright

Noh (theater)
Noh was transformed into a serious Buddhist art by Kannami Kiyotsugu (1333-1384) by
combining folk dances, theatrics, religious, and courtly entertainment
Zeami Motokiyo (1363-1444) the son of Kannami Kiyotsugu. He transformed noh into a
refined court form.
Uta songs
Hayashi an ensemble of nokhan (flute) and three drums used in noh
Ko-tsuzumi and o-tsuzumi hourglass-shaped drums struck with the fingers, of hayashi
Taiko shallow barrel drum struck with two thick sticks of hayashi
Kakegoe calls shouted by the drummers in noh drumming
Yokyoku the vocal part of noh sung by actors and onstage chorus. There are two basic
Kotobe literally words; the heightened speech style of yokyoku
Fushi (melody); the aria style of yokyoku, sung in two basic ways
Yowagin the soft style of fushi
Tsuyogin the strong style of fushi
Shinto Music
Mikagura Shinto music, performed by a male chorus accompanied by instruments
Kagura a generic form of Shinto music
Wagon a six-stringed zither played in Mikagura and kagura
Kagura-bue a transverse, six-holed, bamboo flute
Shakubyoshi- wooden clappers
Buddhist Music
Shomyo Buddhist chant, including syllabic and melismatic, in free rhythm
The Nara period (553-794) and the Heian period (794-1185), with capitals respectively at
Nara and Kyoto, where periods when the ruling clans adopted Mahayana Buddhism.
Mahayana Buddhism - the theology that salvation from suffering and death was open to all
Ryo and ritsu two Chinese-derived pentatonic scales, each with two auxiliary tones,
used in shomyo
Sokyoku (koto music)
Kumiuta a koto-accompanied song cycle
Danmono for solo koto in several sections (dan)
Jiuta a hybrid of sokyoku combining kumiuta and danmono; sometimes called
Tegotomono usually contains three parts: maeuta (foresong), tegoto (instrumental
interlude), and atouta (aftersong)

In the ninth century, during the Heian period, a standard gagaku orchestra was created
under the order of the emperor, and a repertory of two main categories became
standardized: togaku (music of Chinese and Indian origin) and komagaku (music of Korean
and Manchurian origin).
Kangen instrumental court music
Bugaku music for Japanese court dance
Jo-ha-kyu aesthetic scheme of exposition in gagaku. Jo is the netori, the slow beginning.
Ha is the regular rhythmic section. Kyu is the rushing to the end.

Gagaku Instruments
Percussion (membranophones and idiophones)

o Da-daiko a huge drum struck by two thick sticks. It is only used in

bugaku dance.
o Tsuri-daikoa suspended two-headed drum, only one side of which is
struck with two
o Shoko a small suspended gong played with two sticks. It is usually
played on the first beat of every measure.
o Kakko a small drum whose two heads are struck with thin sticks. The
kakko is the leader of the togaku ensemble. Its three basic rhythmic
patterns are two types of rolls (a slow roll done with both sticks and a
faster roll done on the left skin) and a single tap with the right stick.
These patterns are played to regulate the tempo of the piece, and they
are found mostly in free rhythmic sections; they are also used to mark
off beats or phrases. The kakko is only used in togaku.
o San-no-tsuzumi anhourglass shaped drum with two heads,only one of
which is struck. Korean in origin, it is played only in komagaku, by the
leader of that ensemble.
Strings (chordophones)
o Wagonasix-stringedzitherusedinkagura
o Gaku-so a thirteen-stringed zither, a predecessor of the koto. The strings
are plucked by the bare fingers or with finger picks. The music for the gaku-so is
made up of two basic patterns that are played to mark off sections.
o Biwaa pear-shaped lute with four strings and four frets played with a small
plectrum. It is also used to mark off sections in a piece. The music for the biwa
consists primarily of arpeggios, which may end with short melodic fragments.
The effect of biwa music in gagaku is primarily rhythmic. This instrument is
similar to the old style of Chinese pipa.
Winds (aerophones)

Hichirikia short,double-reed bamboo oboe with nine holes,originating from

China. Through use of the embouchure and fingering technique, tones
smaller than a half-step can be produced. Its tone quality is penetrating and
strong, and it is the center of the gagaku ensemble.
o Kagura-buea six-holed bamboo flute that produces a basic pentatonic
scale; other pitches may be produced by using special fingerings. The length
of this flute varies, and thus also its actual pitch. It is used for Shinto
o Ryuteki a seven-holed bamboo flute of Chinese origin used for togaku
music. It is the largest of the gagaku flutes.
o Koma-bue a six-holed flute of Korean origin used for komagaku
music. It is the smallest of the gagaku flutes.
o Sho a mouth organ with seventeen reed pipes (two of which are silent)
in a cup-shaped wind chest with a single mouthpiece. Its predecessor was the
Chinese sheng. Chords are produced by blowing into the mouthpiece and
closing holes in the pipes. Its primary function is harmonic. Typically, each
chord is begun softly and gradually gets louder, whereupon the next chord is
produced with the same dynamic swelling; this process is repeated
continuously by inhaling and exhaling air.

Key Concepts for the Unit

Discussion of Different Cultural Values:

In Japan, maintaining tradition is important. In pedagogy and performance, the emphasis is on

playing music traditionally, without innovation. Preservation has tended to take a vertical path
in Japan. For example, genres are transmitted from teacher to student through special
lineages, without there being any apparent horizontal influence from co-existing genres.
The Connection between Musical/Theatrical Genres and Social Class:
Musical/theatrical genres tell us about Japanese history and social values. Genres are linked to
social class and historical epochs. For example, gagaku remains a symbol of the authority of
the Imperial court while noh, the art of the samurai, emphasizes simplicity and personal
enlightenment through self-understanding and self-reliance. Kabuki and bunraku illustrate the
fondness of the townsfolk for theater.
Gender Issues:
The koto is believed to originally have been a court musical instrument played by men; the
shamisen was originally an instrument played by banished samurai who became wandering
Buddhist monks who utilized the shakuhachi as a weapon when needed. The shamisen was
played by men in accompaniment to the various theater genres. However, women have come
to play these instruments during the Edo period in sankyoku, an ensemble music that has been
associated with the geisha. The term geisha literally means arts person, whereby most
Westerners mistakenly think the term refers to prostitutes. Japanese women had been trained
in the arts at one time to entertain gentlemen, yet today they are trained for arts recitals.
In kabuki, women were banned as performers in 1629 due to the genre becoming associated
with prostitution. In 1653, reforms were again made in kabuki, restricting young men as
performers as well. The transitions between genders in these genres should be discussed.
Listening Skills
Layers of Activity in Ensemble Music:
In ensemble music, certain instruments play the melody heterophonically, while others mark
time in regular recurring ways (see gagaku, below).
Sensitivity to Sound Quality:
Although ensemble textures are largely monophonic and/or heterophonic, great emphasis is
placed on subtle differentiations of timbre and ornamentation.
Sensitivity to Tempo:
Relatively slow tempos with constant, subtle fluctuations in basic pulse. Jo-ha-kyu aesthetic
ideal is pervasive in both large and small forms: slow introductory exposition (jo); faster,
more rhythmically regular middle section (ha); and still faster, more intense drive toward the
end (kyu); often with a sudden slowing down at the end of a piece.
Chapter Section Summaries
According to popular history, kabuki was first performed in 1596 by a female Shinto dancer,
Okuni of Izumo, on the banks of the Kamo River in Kyoto. Female kabuki was soon banned and
replaced by troupes of young males. Because of continued associations with prostitution, these troupes
were also banned. Since 1652, all kabuki roles (male and female) have been performed by adult males.
The Edo period (1603-1867), a time of peace and prosperity, saw a rise in the wealth of the
bourgeoisie: their taste for lavish entertainment is reflected in kabuki and bunraku.
Making use of elaborate stage equipment, scenery, costumes, and properties, kabuki also

relies on stock character types and gestures. Primarily dance theater, kabuki dance is essential
movement towards a climactic static pose (mie). Musical accompaniment is provided by two groups
of musicians. The degatari (on-stage musicians) are split into two subgroups, the smaller subgroup
(chobo, borrowed from bunraku puppet theater) comprises a single shamisen player and a narrator,
who together advance the plot and relate events to the audience; the larger subgroup (debayashi),
consists of several shamisens and singers, and provides musical accompaniment (nagauta) according
to the needs of the drama. The geza (off-stage musicians) sit in a room at stage left and provide sound
effects to accompany dramatic action. Geza instruments include: o-daiko, shamisen, nohkan, gongs,
and bells.
Kabuki developed at the same time as the Florentine Camerata were making their first
experiments with opera. From the start, kabuki was public entertainment. Opera, on the other hand,
began life as an elite form; it was not until the mid-17th century that the first public opera houses were
Kabuki Nagauta music from the play Pojoji Textbook CD1, track 24.
Nagauta music is played by the on-stage debayashi ensemble (a corps of shamisens and
voices plus a noh hayashi). The ensemble has three main subgroups: 1) voice accompanied by
shamisens (playing in unison), which together provide the basic melodic unit; 2) one or more otsuzumi and ko- tsuzumi (large and small noh drums), which play a supporting rhythm; and 3) nohkan
and taiko, which together play an independent line unrelated to the other subgroups.

Highly ornamented vocal, accompanied on shamisen and drum; at 20 drummers

enter, beginning with vocal cry called kakegoe as a rhythmic enhancer and cue


High-pitched flute (nohkan) enters to take melodic lead, acc. by shamisen and
drum, for extended instrumental interlude


Nohkan drops out momentarily; shamisen melody prominent (1:05-1:13); flute

returns (1:14-19), then shamisen alone again (1:20-1:23)


Vocalist returns with fuller accompaniment, including small, bell-like gong


Instrumental with nohkan in the lead acc. by shamisen and drum


Again, shamisen and nohkan exchange short melodic lines (2:08-2:12, shamisen;
2:13-27 nohkan)
Vocalist returns, with fuller acc. including bell


Shamisen leads (until 3:04) then nohkan rejoins for another instrumental interlude


Vocal returns, without the nohkan or bell; track fades out

Bunraku puppet theater developed in Osaka around the same time as kabuki and was also
patronized by the artisan and merchant class. A golden period occurred during the mid-17th century
with the collaboration between the singer Takemoto Gidayu (1651-1714) and the playwright

Chikamatsu Monzaemon (1653-1724). Together they founded a theater in Osaka in 1685 (the same
year J.S. Bach and G.F. Handel were born).
Each of the wooden puppets (two-thirds life size) is manipulated by three puppeteers, all
shrouded in black with only the face of the senior puppeteer visible to the audience. Narration, both
sung and spoken, is provided by a narrator/chanter (tayu), accompanied by a single shamisen (as
borrowed by the kabuki chobo ensemble). The special narrative style, called gidayubushi after
Takemoto Gidayu, includes chants, heightened speech, and lyrical songs.
Noh theater
Noh theater developed during the Muromachi period (1333-1615), a time of continuous
military strife. Exclusively the art of the samurai class, noh combined folk dances, musical theatricals,
and religious courtly entertainment of medieval times. Seminal figures in its development were
Kannami Kiyotsugu, who transformed noh into a serious Buddhist art, and his son, Zeami Motokiyo,
who further developed it as a refined court art, the major theme of which was the redemption of
human suffering through love of Buddha. With its simplicity and restraint, so different from the later
lavish entertainment of kabuki and bunraku, noh theater today is mainly supported by intellectuals.
Plays can be classified according to type: god plays, warrior plays, female-wig plays,
possession plays, and demon plays. In Zeamis day, a noh performance would consist of one of each
type interspersed with comic interludes called kyogen. Today a typical performance consists of only
two or three noh plays with kyogen. Plays are in two acts: the first act comprises four subsections, or
dan, the second comprises a single dan in which the main character (the shite) undergoes some kind of
spiritual transformation. Music consists of two types of songs (uta) sageuta (short, slow, and low in
register) and ageuta (longer and higher), both of which may be sung either by solo actors or by a male
chorus recitative-like heightened speech for the actors, and instrumental music. The latter,
performed by an ensemble generically called hayashi, comprises three nohkan and ko-tsuzumi, otsuzumi, and taiko. The noh hayashi provides introductory music and interludes, marks the entrances
and exits of characters, and accompanies songs and dances in addition to setting the mood of a scene.
The solemn, stately vocal music (called yokyoku), sung by both the actors and the on-stage
chorus, may be in the form of heightened speech (kotobe) or melodic aria (fushi). The latter can be
delivered in either soft (yowagin) or strong (tsuyogin) styles.
Listening Example
Excerpt from Noh play Hagoromo (The Robe of Feathers). Textbook CD1, track 25.
This excerpt provides a brief example of the stately quality of the unison vocal music
accompanied by the three noh drums. You may also care to use a selection from the recording,
Japanese Noh Music (Lyrichord CD 7137).


Sings to accompaniment of drums, including

dance drum taiko with its characteristic low, dull
pitch; drummers intersperse rhythmic cries,
Entrance of chorus (ji)
Singing alone; note increase in drum and regular
rhythm towards the end
Chorus returns picking up the regular rhythm
established at the end of the solo; track fades at

Religious traditions
Shinto, The Way of the Gods, is a loose indigenous agglomeration of local and regional
cults of various kinds. Mikagura, a type of ancient Shinto music still heard today in court Shinto
ceremonies, is performed by a male chorus accompanied by wagon, kagura-bue, hichiriki, and
shakubyoshi. Of the fifteen songs preserved in the present-day repertoire, torimono songs pay homage
to the gods while saibara songs entertain them. In addition to the court tradition, a body of folk Shinto
music, or satokagura, has survived. In this tradition, music may be used in shamanistic rituals that pay
homage to gods (in which case it is performed by wagon, a transverse flute, and a bell tree) or for
festivals, when the music (matsuribayashi) is performed by an ensemble comprising o-daiko, two
taikos, and a transverse flute.
Buddhist chant, called shomyo, is performed by a male chorus in responsorial style. The texts
of sutras, sung in different languages, emphasize the mixed cultural background; Sanskrit texts are
called bonsan, those in Chinese are kansan, and the Japanese ones are wasan. The music consists of
stereotyped patterns belonging to two Chinese-derived scales, ryo and ritsu. Chants often begin slowly
and get faster.
Concert music
Popular koto music of the Edo period, known generically as sokyoku, may be either a kotoaccompanied song cycle (kumiuta), in which the verses of individual songs (called uta) are derived
from pre-existent poems whose subjects are unrelated, or a solo koto genre (danmono), comprising
several sections (dan). Jiuta (or tegotomono), a hybrid form combining techniques from kumiuta and
danmono, usually contains three parts, a foresong (maeuta), an instrumental interlude (tegoto), and an
aftersong (atouta). It is performed by a trio called sankyoku, which comprises koto, shamisen, and
shakuhachi. The koto plays the main melody (and often sings at the same time); the other instruments
play idiomatic elaborations. Solo koto pieces are just as commonly performed by koto duets,
sankyoku trios, or even as geza music in the kabuki.
Listening Example
Rokudan No Shirabe. Textbook CD1, track 26 (performed as sankyoku).
One of the most famous solo koto pieces, Rokudan or Six Sections, is typical of danmono
instrumental pieces in that it consists of several steps, or sections, known as dan. (The term
shirabe, which appears frequently in titles of Japanese instrumental compositions, means
investigation, specifically with respect to the instruments tuning.) A short introduction of four
beats precedes the piece, then each dan follows without break. Each dan contains 104 beats and is
repeated several times with increasing variation (making it extremely difficult to tell where one dan
ends and a new one begins). The jo-ha-kyu structure, however, is somewhat clearer: the first two dan
comprise the jo, or introductory section; the second two, the ha section where the tempo increases; and
the final two, the fast kyu section. The tempo slows dramatically at the end. In this sankyoku version
the instruments play in a rough unison (heterophony) with instrument-specific ornamentation. The
koto part is said to be the meat; the shamisen part, the bone; and the shakuhachi part, the skin.

Slow intro prominently stated by koto and shamisen as lead instruments; the
shakuhachi is heard primarily as an occasional drone instrument; listen at 0:36
for a brief passage of flickering vibrato played on the shamisen.
Shakuhachi enters more prominently, mirroring the koto/shamisen melody.
The strings improvise in the upper octaves, while the flute continues at a lower
pitch. There is an audible pause at about 2:02.


Regular rhythm increases as the melody continues to move into the upper
Shamisen is heard prominently, stating an elaborate variation that is mirrored
by the others, bringing the piece to a conclusion.

Chidori. Textbook CD 2, track 1 (performed as sankyoku with voice).

One of the most famous sokyoku koto pieces is called Chidori. It is set in a four-part jiuta
form (introduction-song-interlude-song) and can be heard as a solo piece, a koto duet, or a koto and
shamisen ensemble; it is also used as geza music in the kabuki theater.

Lengthy heterophonic introduction in slow tempo for 2 kotos, and shakuhachi;

melody rises as the introduction progresses
Vocalist enters, singing a slow melody with only a few notes, but with
considerable vibrato and ornamentation
Brief instrumental interlude
All rejoin and the recording fades out

Recommended Listening
Japanese Koto Music with Shamisen and Shakuhachi (Lyrichord, LLST 7131, B/1).
Gagaku is Japanese court music and it literally means elegant or refined music. The
Japanese Imperial court has maintained it for more than a thousand years. Gagaku is the Japanese
version of ya- yue in China and aak in Korea. All three use the same Chinese pictographs. The earliest
importation of the genre came from China via Korea during the Nara period (553-794). The Japanese
Music Bureau was established in 701 C.E., and was staffed by Korean and Tang Chinese musicians.
This led to a wave of repertoire imported from Tang China. Between 833 and 850, a group of
noblemen led by the retired Emperor Sogo codified the standard gagaku ensemble regarding
instrumentation and repertoire. The latter was divided into two categories: 1) togaku (music of the
left), pieces of Tang Chinese and Indian origin and 2) komagaku (music of the right), pieces of
Korean and Manchurian origin.
The large ensemble consists of percussion (da-daiko, tsuri-daiko, shoko, kakko, and san-notsuzumi), strings (gaku-so and biwa), and winds (hichiriki, kagura-bue, ryuteki, koma-bue, and sho).
When the music is purely instrumental, it is called kangen; if it is used to accompany dance, it is
called bugaku. Changes in instrumentation mark different repertoires of gagaku. For example, togaku
pieces use three sho, three hichiriki, three ryuteki, two biwa, two gaku-so, one kakko, one shoko, and
one taiko, while komagaku pieces use three sho, three hichiriki, three koma-bue, one san-no-tsuzumi,
one shoko, and one taiko (but no strings). In the case of bugaku, the color of the dancers costumes
also mark the different repertoires: for togaku pieces the dancers wear red robes, while for komagaku
pieces they wear green robes.
Gagaku is characterized by its smoothness, serenity, precise execution, and the absence of
virtuosic display. Maximum effect is achieved from minimum material. There are several layers of
activity: a main melody played by hichiriki and flutes; an abstraction of the melody played by gaku-so
and biwa; chords played by the sho; and punctuation provided by biwa, tsuri-daiko, shoko, kakko, and
san-no-tsuzumi. As in many other kinds of Japanese music, formal structure is tripartite. The first
section, a slow introductory section (jo), is performed by hichiriki, flute, and kakko. In the expository
second section (ha), the rhythm becomes regular and the main body of composition is performed by

the full ensemble. In the final denouement (kyu), an increase in tempo and a rushing to the conclusion
is followed by a slackening of pace before the end as instruments gradually drop out, leaving only the
biwa and gaku-so.
Listening Example
Netori & Etenraku in Hyojo. CD 2, track 2.
Etenraku literally means, music of divinity. It is a togaku-style piece in the hyojo mode,
starting with an introductory tuning-up section, called netori, in which the instruments of the
ensemble enter in standard order: sho, hichiriki, ryuteki, kakko, biwa, and gaku-so. The main body of
the piece comprises three sections (each of 32 slow beats).

Plays drone like chord to begin netori (jo section of jo-ha-kyu structure) prelude
in hyojo mode


Hichiriki enters, following prescribed order of entries in netori


Kakko first heard


Ryuteki flute enters


Gaku-so(left channel) and biwa (right channel) enter


Netori ends


Ryuteki introduces Etenraku melody in slow tempo, beginning ha section of

the composition.


Kakko and shoko heard; taiko stroke first heard at 145 listen for shoko part
throughout, marking the beginning of a measure


Kakko plays longer roll


Sho and hichiriki enter


Biwa and gaku-so first heard; ensemble complete


Track fades out

Hogaku, or traditional Japanese music, comprises many different styles, from religious and
dramatic music to court and popular genres.
The earliest known Japanese musical style is gagaku, the traditional music of the court.
Also fairly ancient are the religious Shinto music and the chanting of Buddhist monks known as
The major Japanese theatrical styles are the kabuki drama; bunraku puppet theatre; and the earlier
noh theater.
Typical Japanese instruments include the shamisen (plucked lute), koto (plucked zither),
shakuhachi (end-blown flute), sho (mouth organ), and various drums.

Discussion Questions
1. Generally, in comparison to Japan, how does our culture regard the performance and listening
of music 1,000, or even 500-years-old?
2. How can the development of Western opera or musicals be compared to the development of
Japanese genres such as noh and kabuki?
3. How may we account for the lack of musical puppet theater in the West, and what might be in
its place?
4. How do the practices of sokyoku and sankyoku compare to their contemporary musical
counterparts in Europe?
5. In what ways may we compare Gregorian chant with Buddhist chant, and thus contrast it with
Shinto music?
6. May we find equivalents to court music in the West? Why or why not?
7. How have women been regarded in musical performance in the West in comparison or in
contrast to Japanese women from Edo to the twentieth-century?
Recommended DVDs and Videos
Discovering the Music of Japan. Directed by Bernard Wilets, advisor, Sam Chianis, Encyclopaedia
Britannica Educational Corporation (1967/1982) (22 min.). Explores traditional Japanese music
covering the musical scale, origins of Japan's three major instruments: the koto, shakuhachi, and
shamisen, and how the importance of nature is conveyed in ancient as well as contemporary music by
Japanese composers. Works for the solo koto, solo shakuhachi, solo shamisen, and an ensemble piece
with a singer are performed.
The Art of Kabuki. (1988) (36 min.). An introduction to the 400-year-old tradition of kabuki,
explaining its origins and purposes, its literary sources, and the meaning of its symbolism. The
program shows the rehearsal, preparation of costume and wigs, the performance of the Kabuki play,
and relates the make-up and music to the overall scheme, explaining the aesthetic of kabuki art.
Portrait of an Onnagata. Directed by Tineke Hulsbergen, produced by Films for the Humanities and
Sciences, Princeton, NJ (1992) (30 min.) The documentary examines the role of the Onnagata in
kabuki theater, the male actor who plays a female role and who exemplifies ideal and ultimate
womanhood. Because kabuki is played entirely by men, the role of the Onnagata is very important.
Nagauta: The Heart of Kabuki Music. Narrated by William P. Malm and Sidney D. Brown, produced
by the University of Oklahoma (1993).
Music of Bunraku. Narrated by William P. Malm and Sidney D. Brown, produced by the University of
Oklahoma (1991).
Shinto Festival Music. Narrated by William P. Malm and Sidney D. Brown, produced by the
University of Oklahoma (1993).
Gagaku: The Court Music of Japan. Narrated by William P. Malm, produced by the University of
Oklahoma (1988).

The predominant musical ensemble in Indonesia is gamelan, and its sound has influenced
Western composers since Debussy. Due to its popularity in the West, a number of gamelan ensembles
exist in American university ethnomusicology departments. Gamelan, originally a court ensemble,
also accompanies puppet plays, dances, feasts, and ceremonies. Gamelans exist in both Java and Bali.
Most of the gamelan instruments are bronze, tuned gongs suspended vertically or horizontally, as well
as instruments with tuned bronze keys suspended over resonators. Other instruments include the twostringed fiddle, xylophone, flute, and drums.
Gamelan instrumental ensemble of Java and Bali
Javanese gamelan sedate and majestic sounding. Of the princely Islamic court, it has formal
structures, conventional instrumentation, stable rhythms, and relatively unvaried dynamics, creating a
sense of classical elegance and refinement.
Balinese gamelan kebyar virtuosic, mercurial, flashy, and unpredictable. Adapted by Balinese
villagers from old court instruments, it has sudden dynamic contrasts, jerky syncopations, and rapid
Colotomic structure the marking of fixed beats within the metric structure of a musical piece by
particular instruments; in gamelan music these include gong, kenong, kempul, and kethuk
Kotekan the interlocking of two or more instruments in the ensemble, a principle in gamelan
Javanese Gamelan
Gamelan literally means, musical ensemble; played at the princely courts of Java.
They consist of metallophones, a chordophone (two-stringed fiddle, the rebab), a
xylophone gambang), an aerophone (notched vertical flute, the suling), and
membranophones (the kendang and drums).
Gending a piece of Javanese music for gamelan
Gender a metallophone with thin bronze slab keys, struck with mallets padded with
disks. Each key has its own tuned tube resonator. A key is suspended above a tube.
Saron a metallophone with thick bronze slab keys lying over a trough resonator. There
are three different saron sets: peking (the highest, struck with a water-buffalo horn), barung
(mid- range), and demung (the lower). The keys rest on pads of rattan or rubber. Sarons
provide the skeletal melody (bulungan), the colotomic structure supported by the
periodic punctuations of other instruments such as the gongs.
Bulungan core or skeletal melody
Bubaran gamelan pieces based on a 16-beat colotomic structure with specific
Slentem - similar in construction to the gender, it is struck with a single mallet and is
similar in melodic function to the saron
Bonang a multioctave bronze instrument responsible for elaboration in Javanese music.
There are two: bonang barung (lower pitched) and bonang panerus (higher pitched). Both
span two octaves. The keys resemble overturned bowls with knobs protruding from the
tops, which are struck with mallets.
Kenong like the bonang, has bowl-like gongs, but fewer and much larger than the

bonang. Each supports itself on a web of string. The kenong has a colotomic function in the
Trompong an instrument similar to the bonang - Ketuk a single bowl gong close in
size to a bonang bowl, but flatter. It has a colotomic function.
Gong a Malay (Indonesian) word; a round bronze instrument hanging suspended and
struck with a mallet. All the names of the gongs are onomatopoetic and call to mind the
sound of the instrument it names.
Gong ageng the largest gong, nearly a meter in diameter
Gong siyem a gong slightly smaller than gong ageng
Kempul (kempli, plural) a gong smaller than gong ageng and gong siyem
Gongan a phrase punctuated with a stroke of a big gong
Instruments from Sunda (western Java) the jenglong (like the kenong); the gambang
gangsa (like the gambang but with bronze keys instead of wood)
Celempung a type of zither
Gerongan a male chorus
Pesindhen two female soloists

Tuning and Scales

Laras Javanese tuning systems slendro (pentatonic) and pelog (heptatonic)
A complete Javanese gamelan is two orchestras in one, for there are two types of scales (or
modes) used: a pentatonic (slendro) and a heptatonic (pelog). Since the intervals between
pitches in one mode are different from those of the other, it is not possible to play the same
instruments for both tunings. Therefore, there is a separate collection of instruments for
each tuning, and the musicians switch between the two to change modes. Javanese intervals
are not to Western tuning, and cannot be compared to the diatonic scale. Furthermore, each
gamelan has its own slendro and pelog tunings distinct from other gamelans.
Cultural and Historical Significance of Javanese Gamelan Music
The main courts of the Sultan of Yogyakarta and of the Susuhunan of Surakarta (Solo)
were established in the mid-eighteenth century when the Dutch succeeded in supporting
their trade interests by asserting political control over much of the Indonesian archipelago.
Because political power was largely in the hands of the colonial overlords, the wealth and
energy of the courts was expended on the development of cultural matters like music and
dance as a means of both establishing and justifying their precedence and prestige.
Mataram the last great native power in Java, a Muslim kingdom in a land where Islam
had steadily been increasing its influence for several centuries
Spiritual Aspects of Javanese Gamelan Music
Instruments, especially gongs, are believed to be the abodes of spirits.
Bedhaya dance tunes accompanying bedhaya are considered extremely powerful. Nine
girls from noble families were selected for their beauty and grace to dance. The bedhaya
dance is important because (1) it contributes to an understanding of Javanese culture by
providing a guide to meditation; (2) it explains certain strategies of war; (3) it contributes to
an understanding of music that portrays deep and noble emotions.
Wayang Kulit (shadow-play)
The stories are derived from the Indian epics the Mahabharata and Ramayana.
Dhalang the puppeteer: he speaks with a host of voices, knows archaic languages and a
full range of contemporary social dialects, also a repository of spiritual and cultural values,
acquainted with social and political issues. He signals the gamelan for the pieces of music
needed for scenes.

In the fifteenth century, Mataram, the Islamic kingdom of Java, displaced the Hindu
kingdom of Majapahit. The Majapahit fled to Bali. After 1908, Dutch intervention in Bali
was different from in Java. In Java the newly established courts were provided financial
resources and given limited responsibilities of governance. The Javanese evolved an
elegant way of life that fostered the development of the arts as the most effective means of
retaining exalted status. In Bali, the courts were dissolved and the descendants of nobles,
who were often employed as agents of Dutch rule, rarely had the financial resources to
maintain the elaborate musical establishments associated with courtly life.
Gamelan gumbah an archaic Majapahit opera with its accompanying orchestra
Gamelan gong gede an older Balinese court music, used for temple rituals, similar in
sound and style to the Javanese gamelan
Gamelan semar pegunligan large Balinese court orchestra that plays instrumental
versions of gamelan gambuh melodies
Gender wayang four-piece ensemble of genders that typically accompanies the Balinese
shadow play. The quartet consists of two pairs of gender distinguished from one another by
being in different octaves. Within each pair, one instrument is distinguished from the other
by being slightly out of tune, in order to create a sensation of acoustical beats that gives a
shimmering quality to the pitch when the differently tuned keys are struck simultaneously.
As the instruments of a pair are often played in unison, the result is a constant resonance.
Gamelan gong kebyar - a modern type of Balinese music that is noted for its virtuosic and
unpredictable playing style. Village gamelan clubs often bought older-style gamelan no
longer maintained or needed by the courts and recast them into the new form, and the new
music developed for it was a revolutionary departure from the sedate and majestic pieces of
the repertory for the gamelan gambuh or gamelan gong gede. In the latter, predictably
familiar formal structures, conventional instrumentation, stable rhythms, and relatively
unvaried dynamics created a sense of classical elegance; but the music of kebyar was a
revolutionary change: virtuosic, mercurial, flashy, and unpredictable. It came to accompany
dance around the year 1925.
Gamelan angklung Balinese gamelan featuring pitched bamboo rattles (angklung) as the
lead melody instruments. Only found in the remotest locations in 1938, Canadian composer
Colin McPhee revived its popularity.
Kecak A type of dance drama accompanied by a large male chorus that chants
rhythmically, usually performed for tourists. The rhythmic shouting of the men is
traditionally associated with rituals of divination, in which young girls are entranced in
order for questions to be put to the spirits (sanghyang) that take possession of them. While
music and dance are frequently part of these rituals, dramatic stories from the Ramayana
are not. Thinking that the kecak was an exciting and unusual kind of music, Walter Spies, a
collaborator with Colin McPhee, suggested using it as the foundation for a concise
presentation of the Ramayana that would give tourists, who were already discovering Bali
before World War II, a professionally arranged and attractive means of experiencing it.
Barong a trance dance ritual adopted for performances for tourists. It is accompanied by
a gamelan gong or kebyar and represents the struggle between Good (in the being of the
barong, an awesome but benevolent lion) and Evil (impersonated by a horrendous and
malevolent witch). At the high point of the story, the supporters of the barong attack the
witch with their krises (wavy daggers) and are forced by the witchs magic to turn them
instead upon their own bodies, but the magic of the barong protects them from injuring
themselves. During performances at village temples, many participants may fall into trance
during and after the battle.

Popular Music in Java

Gambus a type of Islamic song having Arabic influence; the name of the plucked lute
originally used to accompany this song
Dangdut popular Indonesian musical style that combines Western rock and Indian film

music Kroncong - a type of popular Indonesian music originating from Portuguese sources
Jaipongan popular Indonesian music derived from native folk entertainment of Sunda
(West Java)

Key Concepts for This Unit

Form and Structure:
Gamelan lends itself to an in-depth study of musical form and structure.
Similarities between Gamelan Ensembles and Orchestras:
The replication of instruments in various sizes combined with the different functions of
sections within the gamelan ensemble can be compared to the Western symphony
orchestra. Does this compatibility contribute to the popularity and effectiveness of gamelan as
a teaching device in western music programs?
Effects of Tourism on Traditional Musics:
This is a good place to discuss the effects of tourism on local cultures, the phenomenon of the
cultural attraction, and the growing standardization of traditions. In Bali, new genres,
developed to entertain tourists, are accepted by Balinese themselves as part of traditional
Listening Skills
Listening to Formal Structure:
1. Central Java: isolate layers of musical activitybasic melody, elaboration, and rhythmic
punctuation (colotomic structure)and cyclical forms
2. Bali: introduce the terms kotekan, interlocking parts, and ostinato. The term kotekan
implies the interlocking of two or more instruments in the ensemble.
Distinguishing between Loud- and Soft-Style Central Javanese Pieces:
Point out, in particular, differences in instrumentation and density of elaborating parts.
Distinguishing between Javanese and Balinese Gamelan Pieces:
Javanese styles are much more predictable and orderly; Balinese styles are more virtuosic to our
ears, having more fluctuations in dynamics and tempo.
Chapter Section Summaries
Tuning and scales
There is no concept of standard pitch; each gamelan has its own, individual tuning (i.e., there
is no standard A=440 and you cannot take an instrument from one gamelan and expect it to be in
tune with the instruments of another ensemble). There are two different scale systems (laras), each of
which has three modes (patet). Slendro is a five-tone scale (using pitches 1 2 3 5 6); its patets are
called Nem, Sanga, Manyura. Pelog, a seven-tone scale (using pitches 1 2 3 4 5 6 7), also has three
patetsLima, Nem, and Barangbut each patet only draws upon a selection of five pitches.
Instrument functions and formal principles
The three levels of musical activity in gamelan music are coordinated by the drummer:
(Balungan, skeleton.) Main melody or close variation played in three different octaves

by sarons and a single slentem.

(Bunga, flowering.) Higher register instrumentsbonang, gender and, in quiet
pieces, rebab, gambang, celempung, suling, and pesindhen (solo female singer)
ornament the tune by subdividing the saron beat.
Rhythmic punctuation:
(Colotomic structure.) Conceived cyclically. The big gong marks the longest units,
kenong and kempul subdivide the cycle, ketuk (and kempyang) provide tertiary
punctuation. The number of beats and particular arrangement of punctuation in a
cycle determine the form of a composition.
Listening Examples
Buburan Udan Mas, (Golden Rain) Laras Pelog, Patet Barang. Textbook CD 2, track 3.
As the full title tells us, Udan Mas (Golden Rain) is a piece in buburan form (a 16-beat
gong cycle with four kenong phrasescalled kenonganeach of 4 beats), using the barang mode of
the pelog scale. A buburan is a closing piece, played at the end of a function as the audience departs.
Udan Mas is a simple loud-style piece with only two phrases, each repeated (AA BB AA BB). It
begins with a short introduction (buka) played by the lower of the two bonangs. Pick out the balungan
played by the sarons. Take that as a quarter note referent. Have the class try to pick out the colotomic
You can represent this as a circle on the blackboard, with beat 16 taking the place of 12 on a clock.
The kempul and large gong are easiest to hear since the sound of hanging gongs carries better than the
suspended kenong and ketuk kettles. Each large gong stroke (G in the diagram) marks the last beat of
the buburan cycle. Anything playing faster than the quarter note saron is an elaborating instrument.
For example, the saron panerus plays at a ratio of 2:1 to the main saron line. Bonangs play at ratios of
2:1, 4:1, or 8:1, depending on tempo.

Introduction (buka) on bonang joined by kendang and leading to first gong at 7


0:007- 0:16

First gongan, balungan melody on saron, one pitch per beat repeat




Second gongan
Return of first gongan with repeat


Return of second gongan with repeat, accelerando begins toward end


Repeat of both gongans with final decelerando beginning at end of first

statement of second gongan (ca. 1:39)

Ketawang Puspawarna, Laras Slendro, Patet Manyura. Textbook CD 2, track 4.

Puspawarna (Kinds of Flowers) is a piece in ketawang form (another 16-beat gong cycle,
but this time with two kenongan, each of 8 beats), using the manyura mode of the slendro scale. This

more complex soft style piece is performed for the entrance of a prince.
0:00- 0:08

Introduction (buka) on rebab joined by kendang and leading to first gong at

8 seconds (just after yes spoken by ensemble leader)

0:08- 0:22

First gongan A with entrance of pesindhen (female vocalist); tempo starts

briskly with one balungan pitch every other beat and starts to slow down

0:22- 0:46

Repeat of gongan A with continuing decelerando to reach settled tempo,

accompanied by stylized male vocal cries at colotomic points

0:46- 1:14

Gongan B with gerongan (male chorus) joining

1:14- 1:41

Gongan C with gerongan and pesindhen melody continuing

1:41- 2:09

Gongan A with gerongan melody concluding

2:09- 2:37

Repeat of whole form from 0:08 through 2:09 but in same tempo until brief
cadential accelerando starts in gongan C at about 3:55 followed by
decelerando beginning at 4:03 and continuing until end.

Balinese music provides a vivid contrast to Central Javanese court styles. The speed,
excitement, and virtuosity of gamelan gong kebyar, in particular, is immediately appealing to students.
There are many other types of gamelan ensemble (discussed in the text). Gamelan gambuh, for
example, comprises several long vertical flutes, rebab, and percussion; gamelan gong gede (literally:
gamelan with the big gongs), is akin to the large instrumental gamelan of Central Java; and gamelan
Semar pegulingan, is a delicate-sounding ensemble used to play instrumental versions of the gambuh
repertory. All have declined in popularity since the dissolution of Balinese courts by the Dutch in
1908. Other ensembles are still popular because of their association with folk theatrical genres:
gamelan arja, a small ensemble of flutes and percussion used to accompany operatic performances
with comic plots; and gender wayang, an ensemble of four genders, used to accompany the dalang in
Balinese wayang kulit.
Probably the best known Balinese ensemble, the gamelan gong kebyar, was developed in the
1920s and has continued to exert a strong influence on many styles of Balinese music. It employs
sharp contrasts in dynamics, tempo, orchestration, and rhythm along with unpredictable formal
structures. The word kebyar means a sudden flare (e.g., the striking of a match) and fits the dramatic
kebyar dance in which a solo dancer interprets the sudden changes of mood expressed by the gamelan.
Listening Examples
Kebyar Teruna. Textbook CD 2, track 5.
This is a typical example of the gong kebyar style. The frequent changes of tempo, dynamics,
and mood allow the solo dancer to express a wide range of moods and emotions. Musically, the
composition is a series of ostinato patterns of different lengths. The fantastic speed of the
metallophones is possible because several performers play interlocking parts (kotekan). The Balinese
rule of thumb is that if one player can play so fast, four players can play four times as fast. In the slow,
quiet sections, soft style instruments, particularly the suling (bamboo flute), can be heard. In Central
Javanese style, you would not expect both soft- and loud-style instruments to play in the same piece.


Typical kebyar style intro, with varied dynamics

and tempi, irregular rhythms and syncopations,
nearly whole orchestra in unison


Passage featuring reyong (long row of upsidedown metal pots suspended on a frame)


Passage featuring gangsa


Frantic tempo ostinato for gangsa featuring drum

and cymbal rhythms


Ostinato for lower pitched calung/jegogan

(similar to gangsa but with fewer keys and
padded strikers); rapid figuration (kotekan) in
higher pitched gangsa; regular beats on dull
sounding kempli


Syncopated cadential pattern and repetition,

emphasized with ringing reyong chords


Sudden change to speedier tempo with faster

kempli beats and further syncopated reyong


Continuation of calung/jegogan ostinato with

rapid gangsa figuration


Fades out

Tabuh Empat Pagawak. Performed by Gamelan Gong Gede Sekar Sandat of Bangli. Textbook CD
2, track 6.
A typical old style piece for gamelan gong gede well illustrates the kind of music to which the
new kebyar style presented such a startling contrast. The meandering trompong introduction is starkly
different to the explosive beginning of "Teruna" of the previous example, and the stately progression
of the melody when the whole ensemble enters is rigidly organized with a regular meter and equally
regular ornamentation and orchestration.

Introduction in free rhythm played on trompong


A few other instruments gradually join in


Drums enter and establish regular beat


Trompong continues introduction with other

instruments regularly subdividing the beat for
rhythmic propulsion until main melody (pokok)
enters at 2:00 in gangsa with approximately one
note every two seconds, and with subdivided beat
emphasized by ceng-ceng cymbals.


Fades out

Kebyar was given a new twist when it began to accompany dance. About 1925, a young
dancer named Mario made a particular impression with his version of a dance to go with this exciting
music. Like the fixed structures of the classical gending, the various dances done by trained court
dancers or by people, making offerings at the temple were based on traditional movements and
gestures, and the stock characters of dramas like gambuh were confined to expressing the limited
range of moods suited to them. But Marios kebyar mirrored the fleeting moods and unpredictable
contrasts of the music. Performing in an unusual crouched position, the dancer was on the same level
as the seated musicians with whom he sometimes interacted directly, seeming to tease and cajole.
Alternately rising onto his knees and squatting, playing with a fan, flashing a bizarre series of glances
that registered astonishment, pique, enticement, and fury in rapid succession, the dancer would
interpret the musics every change. To top things off, he might conclude by joining his accompanists
in a choreographically performed solo on the obsolete trompong, all the while continuing to bob up
and down and back and forth on his knees, twirl his mallets like a drum major, and register a
bewildering series of moods on his face. While originally danced by boys or young men, today kebyar
is also danced by young women dressed as men.
Western influence
Twentieth-century Balis music and arts economy has been enhanced by the interest of
Westerners, the impact of tourism, and commoditization of culture. Three genres were either devised
or revived by Westerners: gamelan angklung, kecak, and barong. The last two in particular, now
practically obligatory for tourists, have been accepted as traditional Balinese performing arts by
locals as well as foreigners, in spite of their modern origins. Cultural troupes provide regular
employment for musicians and dancers.
Indonesian popular music
Indonesian popular music is eclectic and cosmopolitan. Of the four genres discussed in the
text, only jaipongan is indigenous. Gambus, dangdut, and kroncong are influenced by musics as
diverse as Arabic music, Indian film song, and Western rock.
Instruments, vocal timbre, musical style, and rhythms all mark this genre clearly as Middle
Eastern in origin. The association is further emphasized by the use of Arabic dress and lyrics that
often have Islamic subjects.
A mixture of Western rock, Indian film music, and Islamic themes, dangdut draws its
audience from Muslim youth of the lower and middle class. Texts, in the national language, not only
speak to this group, but also for them, expressing their resentment at the inequalities of modern life.
One of the most distinctive instruments in the ensemble is a double drum that looks like bongo drums,
but sounds like tabla; the onomatopoetic sound of the drum, dang-dut, perhaps suggests the origin of
the genres name. Under the influence of Rhoma Irama, dangdut became the predominant pop music
of the 1970s and 1980s.
Listening Example
Dangdut Quran Dan Koran (excerpt), composed by Rhoma Irama. Performed by Soneta Group, vocal:

Rhoma Irama. Textbook CD 2, track 8.

This contemporary recording prominently features synthesizers in both the lead and
supporting roles. The synthesized voices imitate traditional instrument sounds, while also setting
them in a more modern context.

Introduction with synthesized instrumental melody and accompaniment

Instrumental bridge announcing 1st verse
First verse of first stanza with melody A Repeat of A for second verse
Third verse with contrasting melody B Repeat of B for fourth verse,
followed by instrumental
Return of part A melody with new text, with repeat
Instrumental break; synthesized guitar lead voice
Lead taken by synthesized flutes and oboes
New stanza with new melody C Repeat of C melody Melody D sung once
Chorus break
Instrumental bridge to verse
Melody A and repeat with new text
Melody B and repeat with new text
Instrumental bridge to verse
Melody A and repeat with new text
Brief instrumental coda.

Kroncong blends European and central Javanese traditions. Thought to derive from
Portuguese songs and instruments brought to Indonesia during the 16th century, kroncong was
associated with lower class Eurasians (called buaya kroncong, kroncong crocodiles) in Jakarta. In
the 1920s, it was taken up by popular theater and the recording industry, becoming the principal
commercial entertainment music of Jakarta as a whole. During the 1950s, sentimental, patriotic, and
nationalistic texts played an important role in the struggle for independence. The first truly Indonesian
popular music, kroncong is still popular with the older generation.
The typical instruments accompanying kroncong are of European derivation: violin, cello,
flute, and plucked strings of various types; one of the strings, similar to a ukulele, has given its name
to the genre. These provided a simple, harmonically based accompaniment to vocal melodies sung
with a mellifluous sweetness. When kroncong began to attract the interest of a more polite section of
middle- class Javanese society in the twenties and thirties, it underwent a kind of acculturation to
central Javanese style, and while the instruments were the same, they took on functional qualities
similar to those of gamelan music. The flute and violin became like the suling and rebab, providing
free, heterophonic elaboration of the melody; the cello, while continuing to provide a foundation for
the harmony, was played pizzicato in rhythms resembling kendang-like drum patterns; and the
kroncong, with its regular offbeat plucking, had a resemblance to the ketuk.
Listening Example
Kroncong Morisko. Performed by Orkes Kroncong Mutiara, vocal: Suhaery Mufti. Textbook CD 2,
track 9.

0:00- 0:12
0:13- 0:37

Introduction in free rhythm on flute

Plucked strings set up accompaniment patterns regularly subdividing beat in a manner
reminiscent of gamelan practice over which flute continues its ornamental floating
Voice takes over melody of song and flute adds ornamental flourishes in manner of
gamelan suling at ends of vocal phrases.
Fades out

Another popular national style, jaipongan grew out of a type of professional folk entertainment from
Sunda (West Java). A small ensemble of musicians playing a rebab, a gong, 3 ketuks, 2 sarons, and
drums accompanied a female singer/dancer who was paid to dance with men from the audience. The
rather virtuosic Sundanese drumming is a particular characteristic of this style. Like dangdut, the
word jaipongan was made up from syllables representing drum sounds, and flashy Sundanese-style
drumming is basic to this style.
Listening Example
Daun Pulus Keser Bojong, Performed by Gugum Gumbira and his Jugala Group, singer Idjah
Hadidjah. Textbook CD 2, track 10.



Extended introductory passage highlighting the virtuosic and flashy drumming

Sundanese drumming style in which the drums are struck with the hands hand
even manipulated with the feet. Melody on rebab, and regular clacking of
cymbal like kecrek. Periodic shouts from the performers add to the raucous and
rowdy atmosphere typical of jaipongan performance.
The performers yell the name of their group JU----GA-----LA alternating with
the leader who sort of groans it in a gruff voice.
Introduction concludes with entrance of sarons playing phrase with an answer
by drums, both then repeated
Singer briefly introduces song unaccompanied and is joined by other
performers at 2:20; her highly elaborate melody is heterophonically
accompanied by the rebab and progresses with occasional, startling comments
from the drum.
Fades out

Gamelanan Indonesian term for musical ensemble. In central Java, these are
usually instruments of bronzegongs and keyswith the addition of drums, a
flute, a fiddle, a xylophone, and a zither.
Indonesian music is generally based on repeated musical phrases of varying
Javanese music uses two scales a 5-tone (slendro) and a 7-tone (pelog); in Bali,
pelog predominates, but the important gender wayang ensemble for accompanying
the shadow play uses slendro.
Gamelan music serves ritual/spiritual, governmental, dramatic, and social
The shadow puppet playWayang Kulitis one of the major theatrical forms that
uses gamelan accompaniment.
Balinese gamelan sound is distinguished from its Javanese relative by the use of
paired instruments that are tuned slightly differently, creating a shimmering or

pulsating effect.
Many newer popular styles combine outside influencesranging from Arabic
pop, Western rock, and Indian film musicwith traditional Javanese musical
instruments and ideas.
Discussion questions
1. How may Westerners conceptualize colotomic structures in Western music?
2. How had Western composers such as Claude Debussy and Colin McPhee utilized Indonesian
music, particularly scales, in their compositions?
3. What caused the divergences of Javanese and Balinese music in the fifteenth-century, and
then in the twentieth-century?
4. Why can Indonesia be labeled a bronze culture?
5. What other cultures can we list that are influenced by a material as bronze to Indonesia?
6. In what other world music cultures might we find interlocking?
7. Where might we find Western, African, Asian, Native America or folk European equivalents
to Balinese musical instruments that contain spirits?
8. How may shadow play be compared to opera or ballet?
9. What acculturations had Balinese music made in the twentieth-century, and how/why was it
10. What were the forces that created Arabic and then Portuguese influences on Indonesian
popular music?
Recommended DVDs and Videos
JVC Video Anthology of World Music and Dance, Southeast Asia Regional Set. Produced by Ichikawa
Katsumori, directed by Nakagawa Kunihiko, edited by Fujii Tomoaki, English language version in
collaboration with Smithsonian/Folkways Recordings, distributed by Rounder Records (1990).

Sub-Saharan Africa maintains enormous linguistic, cultural, and musical diversity, where oral
traditions are the means of passing culture rather than literary traditions. Africa is approached from an
anthropological perspective, from which we explore the relationship between music and the kinds of
culture that produce it.
A Shona Mbira Performance in Zimbabwe
Shona a Bantu-speaking people of Zimbabwe in southeast Africa
Bira a Shona religious ceremony involving spirit possession
Mbira a musical instrument, a lamellaphone, of the idiophone type, has 22 keys
Lamellaphone an instrument, the sound of which is produced by tuned metal or reed
tongues set on a bridge mounted to a soundboard or box, plucked by the players
alternating fingers
The Pygmies

Pygmies nomadic hunters and gathers of equatorial Africa

BaMbuti a Pygmy people of the Ituri forest in the eastern Democratic Republic of
Congo Pygmies have few instruments due to their nomadic existence. They use vocal
choirs, flute duets, trumpets made from tree bark or ivory, and the musical bow.

The Mande of West Africa

Mande a subgroup of the Mandinka people of Senegal and Gambia
Jali a hereditary professional musician in Mande society, who serves as an oral historian
and singer/performer (plural: jalolu)
Kora a twenty-one-string bridge-harp, with a large gourd sound chamber, played by
Mande jalolu
The Ewe of Ghana
Anlo-Ewe a group of people in Ghana and Togo, socially distinct from other Ewe
Club organizations maintain semiprofessional drum and dance troupes.
The Buganda Kingdom
Baganda a Bantu-speaking people of Buganda (Uganda)
Insurrections after 1962 desecrated the kingdom and destroyed musical instruments.
Popular Music in the Twentieth Century
West African highlife brass bands
Palm-wine an acoustic guitar music that served as a basis for juju
Jj A form of Nigerian popular music associated with the Yoruba that combines
electric instruments with indigenous drums and percussion
Jit (also jiti) a traditional Shona village dance and song, now played by electric guitar
bands in Zimbabwe
Key Concepts for the Unit
Despite the diversity, a few underlying principles characterize the music of the whole region.

General Principles of African Music:

Interlocking is the practice of fitting pitches into spaces between other parts, alternating
pitches or phrases of one part with those of another to create a whole part. An example is the
whole melody created by a mbira players two hands.
Call and response is the alternation or interlocking of leader and chorus, or of a vocal and
instrumental part. Hocket is the interlocking pitches between two or more sound sources to
create a single melody or part. An example is Pygmy vocal music.
Dense, overlapping textures and buzzy timbres manifested in a preference for overlapping
drum and percussion rhythms. An example is Ewe drumming. Wind and string instruments
incorporate percussive elements: strings are more often plucked than bowed and wind
instruments are often played with a breathy sound quality. An example of a percussive string
sound is the kora.
Cyclical and open-ended forms involving one or more repeated melodies/rhythmic patterns
(ostinatos) as the basic foundation of a performance.
Ostinato is a repeated melodic or rhythmic pattern that forms the basic foundation of a piece
or musical section (sometimes called melorhythm or ensemble thematic cycle).
Community participation. The participation of non-specialists is facilitated by long
performances with much repetition and by the close association of music with dance.
Importance of rhythmic complexity. This can occur at many levels: juxtaposition of duple and
triple patterns (hemiola), multiple layering of different rhythmic patterns, and interaction
between core foundation and varied/improvised elaboration parts.
Listening Skills
Interlocking Parts and Hemiola:
You can demonstrate both very simply by dividing the class into pairs. Have one partner clap
eighth notes while the other claps triplets. If they watch each others hands, they see visually
how the parts interlock.
Give the class a short fixed chorus to sing while you act as leader and vary your part.
Divide the class into a number of groups and give each group a pitch to sing. Clap a slow
pulse and ask each group to sing their pitch in sequence, overlapping the end of their pitch
with the start of the next groups pitch. Gradually speed up the pulse until it sounds like a
continuous melody.
Rhythmic Complexity:
Gather as many percussion instruments as possible. Use a double bell or something similar as
a time marker and set out a basic ostinato (e.g., a 3-2 son clave pattern). One by one, add
other ostinatos and get students to take over the pattern once it is established. Its easiest to
think in 12- beat units, since you can fit all kinds of duple and triple patterns into that frame.
This actually provides a perfect opportunity to invite a guest to class to give a workshop.
Chapter Section Summaries

The Shona
The Shona are a Bantu-speaking people of Zimbabwe in southeastern Africa. They have a
variety of lamellaphones, each with their own distinct scale patterns and playing techniques. The
mbira, a lamellaphone, is played at bira ceremonies for ancestral spirits. A bira is a family sponsored
event wherein the ancestors interact with the living. The mbira music attracts a spirit, for spirits
enjoyed this music during their lives. A spirit medium becomes possessed by the spirit, and the family
consults the ancestor about personal problems. A musical performance involves one or more mbira in
interlock, with singing involving a low syllabic bass style, a high melodic style using falsetto singing
and yodeling, and ancient poetry recitation.
Listening Example
Mbira music: Nhemamusasa. Textbook CD 2, track 11.
This same piece (for 22-key mbira dzavadzimu, hosho, and singer) appears on The Soul of
Mbira (Nonesuch H-72054; reissued on compact disc). In the Nonesuch version recorded by the
leading mbira scholar Paul Berliner, the singer employs three singing styles: mahonyera (a low,
syllabic bass style), huro (a high melodic style that includes some yodeling), and kudeketera (Shona
poetry). The basic ostinato of an mbira piece is made up of a small number of short interlocking
segments or phrases that are repeated in sequence. The two hands interlock to create a single melody.
As the piece progresses, small variations (including traditional formulas and improvised lines) are
introduced. Usually each variation is repeated several times before a new one is introduced. Gradual,
subtle change is preferred to dramatic contrast; the latter is the sign of an unskilled, impatient player.
When two players are present, they play complementary parts that interlock to create a whole. One
part is called kushaura (to lead); the other is called kutsinhira (to follow).
The Pygmies
Pygmies are nomadic, semi-autonomous hunter-gatherers of equatorial rainforest areas.
Communalism is a way of life because survival depends on cooperation. The key values of their
society egalitarianism, consensus, and unityare reflected in their musical culture. Performance is
a non- specialist activity, centered on vocal music (everyone can sing) and involving the whole
community. In musical terms, there is an emphasis on ostinato, interlocking parts (using hocket
technique in which singers alternate short melodic fragments to create a melody), and call-andresponse forms.
Listening Example
BaMbuti vocal music: Alima Girls Initiation Music. Textbook CD 2, track 12.
This recording is from the disc Pygmies of the Ituri Forest (Folkways FE 4457) and includes
snatches of solo and chorus, but mainly demonstrates hocket, where each singer is responsible for one
note and hoots it at the appropriate moment. Ringing rhythm sticks, softer split sticks, and handclaps
provide a complex rhythmic accompaniment. There are many other recordings of Pygmy music. All of
the tracks are short; it is easy to find examples that demonstrate solo-chorus, hocket, and/or hemiola
rhythmic patterns.
West African Mande society is characterized by an elaborate social hierarchy in which
occupational specialization is determined by heredity. The two main social categories are sula

(ordinary people: farmers, merchants, etc.) and nyamalo (professional craft specialists). One
specialist is the jali, a wordsmitha professional musician/verbal artist who is simultaneously an
oral historian, musician, singer-bard, and praise singer. The social status of jalolu (plural) is
ambiguous; while they are important and valued members of society because of their knowledge of
history and power to manipulate words (either in praise or criticism), they are also looked down upon
and treated as social outcasts.
The jali often accompanies himself on the kora, a harp-lute with 21 strings (arranged in two
parallel rows perpendicular to the skin face of the gourd sound box) and with a range of over three
octaves. Kora music consists of four components: donkilo (basic vocal melody), sataro (improvised
declamatory singing style), kumbengo (short instrumental ostinato), and birimintingo (improvised
instrumental interludes). The piece itself is a series of stock resources that are uniquely arranged and
improvised upon according to the needs of a given performer and occasion.
Listening Example
Kora music: Ala la ke. (Originally from Kora Manding: Mandinka Music of the Gambia.
Ethnodisc ER 12102, A/3. Recorded by Roderic Knight.) Textbook CD 2, track 13.
According to Roderic Knights liner notes, this is one of the best-known kora songs. The title
literally means, God has done it. It commemorates the settlement of a quarrel between two brothers
over the right to the chieftainship of Fuladu after their father died in the early days of colonial rule.
The younger brother usurped the throne and had his brother punished when he thought his life was
threatened. This brought attention to the usurper and the British governor installed the rightful heir.
Instead of punishing his younger brother, the new chief only asked for an apology, saying that it was
Gods deed.
In the textbook, Turino reproduces part of the song text and shows how the different sections
(kumbengo, donkilo, birimintingo, and sataro) are arranged. Many of the general characteristics of
African music discussed above are illustrated in this example. Note especially the buzzing metal
jangles attached to the instrument.
The Ewe of Ghana have a complex political hierarchy with a paramount chief at the apex.
Each district functions as an autonomous state with its own chief and systems of clans, lineages, and
age sets. Among the Anlo-Ewe, voluntary dance-drumming clubs, the primary institutions for musical
performance, have a hierarchy of their own: chairman, secretary, dance leaders, drum leaders, etc., all
have specific roles and duties. These semi-professional ensembles fall midway between the highly
specialized jali and the non-professional Pygmy.
Anlo-Ewe dance-drumming ensembles typically comprise gankogui (a double bell that plays
an ostinato within a twelve-pulse cycle and serves as a point of reference for the ensemble), axatse
(gourd shaker), atsimevu and goba (large barrel-shaped drums that employ a repertoire of fixed and
improvised patterns), sogo and kidi (middle-sized drums that serve the function of a chorus, playing a
limited variety of patterns in call-and-response fashion with the goba and atsimevu), and kaganu
(small drum that plays single repeated ostinato). The music displays the typical characteristics we
have encountered elsewhere: call-and-response, ostinato, interlocking parts, improvised variation
based on stock formulaic patterns, and a dense ensemble texture.
Listening Example
Gadzo. (Originally from Ewe Music of Ghana. Folkways AHM 4222.) Textbook CD 2, track 14.

Again, general African musical principles and aesthetic values are well demonstrated: calland- response, interlocking parts, ostinato, improvised variations, and a dense, multi-layered sound.
The videotape, Kpegisu: A War Drum of the Ewe, sets out each part independently, shows how they fit
together, and gives an example of a performance in context.1
Buganda was formerly a powerful independent kingdom in the Lake Victoria region of East
Africa. The court of the king (or kabaka) was the major center of musical activity. The amakondere, a
prestigious ensemble comprising several gourd trumpets, each of which played only one pitch, and a
similar flute ensemble accompanied by four drums both played in strictly interlocking fashion.
Another court instrument, the large 22-key akadinda (xylophone) used the same interlocking
technique. The akadinda keys, set freely on two perpendicular supporting logs, were played by six
musicians, three seated on either side of the instrument. The royal drums, part of the kabakas regalia,
were a powerful symbol of royal authority. The most important royal ensemble, the entenga, was
made up of 12 drums (played by four musicians) carefully graded in size and tuned to the local
pentatonic scale, accompanied by three untuned drums.
Musical instruments
A variety of percussion instruments of the membranophone and idiophone types are found throughout
Sub-Saharan Africa, as are aerophones such as flutes, whistles, horns and trumpets, and a variety for
Talking drums
Tuned drums are used by many African societies to talk over long distances. Such drum
languages are possible when the spoken language is tonal (i.e., the meaning of a word depends on
the relative pitches given to its syllables). Drums, and other instruments such as lamellaphones, can
articulate verbal formulas by imitating tonal patterns. Longer messages can be played by drumming
the tonal contour of well-known stereotypical verbal formulas.
Listening Example
Greetings and Praises Performed on the Yoruba Dndn Drum. Textbook CD 2, track 15.
This excerpt illustrates how the dndn is used as a talking drum. The drummer first plays
a pattern, and then another drummer recites the corresponding verbal phrase. Included are common
greetings like Good morning as well as brief praises that would have been played in honor of a
chief. The dndn is an hour-glass shaped pressure drum; when the player squeezes and pulls the
ropes that bind the heads on both ends of the drum, increased tension is created so that the pitch is
raised; when the cords are relaxed, the tension lessens, and the pitch drops.
The Musical Bow
The oldest and one of the most widespread stringed instruments of Africa is the musical bow.
Like the bows used to shoot arrows, it consists of a single string attached to each end of a curved stick.
Depending on the tradition, either a gourd attached to the stick or the mouth cavity of the player serves
David Locke with Godwin Agbeli, Kpegisu: A War Drum of the Ewe (Tempe: White Cliffs Media
Company, 1992). Book and videotape. The book includes transcriptions.

as a resonator. The string is either plucked or, alternatively, struck with another stick; it is sometimes
stopped with a hard implement to raise the pitch. The playing technique results in a percussive and yet
beautiful and delicate sound.
Listening Example
Musical Bow Played by a BaMbuti Pygmy. Textbook CD 2, track 16.
Here we continue the discussion of the BaMbuti pygmies. Colin Turnbull recorded this
BaNdaka pygmy playing the musical bow, in this case made from a bent sapling, with a thin section of
vine used for the string. The player holds one end with his toe against the ground, and the other
against the edge of his mouth, which serves as a sound resonator. By flexing the bow, he shortens the
string, and raises the pitch. So pleased was he with his performance that he shouts Budah! in the
middle of it, an expression of joy.
Urban popular musical traditions
Urban popular music traditions have sprung up all over Africa. Local input mixed with
Western elements (brass instruments, electric guitars, basic harmony, etc.) and Latin American
rhythms give each style a unique sound.
West Africa
A form of brass band music originating in Ghana that developed from the local Akan people
performing local music on brass instruments with traditional percussion instruments. It
further developed into dance band music with a Cuban rumba style. Key performer: E.T.
Palm wine music:
Played on acoustic guitar accompanied by various percussion instruments, this urban
working-class style served as a basis for juju music.
Mixes electric guitars and amplified vocals with a large percussion section that includes
sekere (rattle) and an hourglass-shaped talking drum. Pedal steel guitar and synthesizers are
recent additions. Combines the traditional function of praise singing with social dancedrumming. Although Western harmonies are used, juju is organized around a series of
interlocking ostinato parts (played by guitars and drums) and call-and-response singing. Key
performers: Ebenezer Obey, King Sunny Ade.
I.K. Dairo was a major juju star of the 1960s. At the height of popularity, his group, The Blue
Spots, included nine members and instrumentation typical of bands at that time: guitar, talking drum,
bongos, conga-like drums, claves, maracas, and agogo (double-bell); Dairo also atypically performed
single-row button accordion sometimes instead of guitar.
Listening Example
I.K. Dairo and The Blue Spots, Salome. Recorded in Lagos, 1962. Textbook CD, track 17.
After an accordion introduction, Dairo sings the text followed by a brief accordion solo
(section A). The accordion then drops out for a new section (B). This section involves a percussion
break in which the talking drum takes the lead playing verbal phrases that a unison vocal chorus

repeats. At approximately 1:39, the talking drummer plays a short vocal phrase that is immediately
repeated by the chorus in call-and-response (X2), making the melodic (speech-song-like) quality of
the talking drum particularly apparent. The B section ends with a bongo solo. Shortened accordion
introduction and vocal material from the A section then comes back to conclude the piece creating an
overall A B A structure. In addition to the combination of Yoruba and Cuban instruments, the piece
incorporates the clave rhythmic pattern of the Cuban son (played by the rhythm sticks, see
Chapter 10) which has influenced cosmopolitan musics around the world. The text itself illustrates a
combination of Yoruba and cosmopolitan elements: much of the text that Dairo sings falls squarely
within the style of pop love songs; the texts drummed and sung in Section B, however, include Yoruba
Local likembe (mbira) dance music, accompanied by struck bottles and a drum, mixed with AfroCuban rumba is the basis of Congo-Zaire style. Acoustic and, later, electric guitars replaced the
likembe. Organized around guitar ostinatos and improvised solos, a high, sweet singing style, and
danceable rhythms, this style has widely influenced other African popular styles. Key performers:
Franco and his band, O.K. Jazz, Docteur Nico, and Kanda Bongo Man.
South Africa
Syncretic choral styles (e.g., mbube, bombing, and isicathamiya) developed amid the dismal living
conditions of rural African migrants who worked in cities and mines. These genres, which blended
Western harmonies taught by missionaries with slow Zulu choral music characterized by multiple
overlapping ostinatos, have been popularized on an international scale by groups such as Ladysmith
Black Mambazo. In addition to vocal traditions, urban Black South African instrumental genressuch
as township jive or mbaqangablend electric guitars, bass, and trap set with accordions, violins,
and penny whistles.
Zimbabwean guitar bands began to play local Shona music, including dance-drumming
genres, mbira-based songs, and jit, in response to the social climate of the time. This original
neoindigenous Zimbabwean guitar style continued to be refined throughout the 1980s. Thomas
Mapfumos music is an example of the blending of indigenous African and cosmopolitan-popular
musical elements. Mapfuno began his professional career in the 1960s playing cover versions of
English and American rock and soul music, as well as some Shona village songs. Classical mbira
pieces like Nhemamusasa are used as the basis for some of Mapfumos pieces. Electric guitars
might play the basic four-phrase kushaura ostinato as well as melodic lines that would be on the
higher mbira keys; the electric bass plays the part of the lower mbira keys of the kushaura. In recent
recordings, according to Mapfumo, the keyboard often plays the kutsinhira mbira part, and the mbiras
divide these parts as they normally would. The drummer plays a rhythm on the high-hat that sounds
like the hosho (gourd shakers) used to accompany the mbira, and Shona hand-clapping patterns and an
actual hosho are also added. Mapfumo sings in Shona village style including the high, yodeling
technique and low-pitched singing of vocables; he also sings traditional lyrics as well as texts of his
own composition.
Listening Example
Chitima Ndikature (Excerpt), Performed by Thomas Mapfumo and The Blacks Unlimited. Textbook
CD 2, track 18.
This track is an example of Mapfumos mature style, which features one electrified mbira

(bottle caps removed) along with electric guitar, keyboards, bass, drums, hosho, and congas along
with two female vocalists. This piece is based in the classical mbira repertory using a 48-beat cycle
(four 12-beat phrases) and is related to the Nymaropa tune family. Mapfumo uses indigenous Shona
vocal techniques such as the singing of vocables with the lower lines of the mbira part. The allusive
imagery of the sung poetry and its mosaic quality are also typical of indigenous Shona songs.
Sub-Saharan Africa is a huge area with many different societies, each with their
own distinctive music; however, there are some common general musical
characteristics and approaches that we can identify that pertain to many African
African music favors ostinatos (repeated rhythmic and melodic cycles), polyphony
(multiple melodic parts performing at once), and interlocking parts.
Musical performance is often a communal participatory activity, and pieces often
comprise a collection of melodic or rhythmic formulas that are subject to group
variation and thus differ from one performance to another.
Many musical performances accompany religious or civic rituals.
Social structure and conditions influences music and performance; for example,
the nomadic BaMbuti pygmies use fewer instruments and favor vocal
performance. Those instruments that they do use tend to be smaller and lighter,
fitting their traveling lifestyle. On the other hand, the Buganda kingdom, with a
highly organized, centralized government, developed elaborate court music
Key instruments include lamellaphones (for example, the mbira), strings (the kora
and kontingo), xylophones, trumpets, flutes, musical bows, and drums.
During the 20th century, cosmopolitan musical influences from the United States,
Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, and Asia have been incorporated into the
African musical scene and have been combined with local styles and practices for
the creation of new, vital African musical styles.
Discussion Questions

Is there an equivalent to African interlocking in Western music, and how might it work?
Is there an equivalent to African interlocking in an Asian music studied thus far, and how
does it work?
Why would Pygmy communal living bear an influence on vocal hocket?
Why would Pygmy nomadic life prevent Pygmies from using many musical instruments?
Why do the words of the jali have as much importance as writing?
Are there equivalents to the jali in Western music, and what do they say?
What semblance to the kora is there among Western string instruments, and is there a
common well- spring?
Does anything like African ostinato exist in Western musical performance, and how would it
Does American popular music use drumming in the same manner as African drumming, or
how is it different?
What might befall an African court music tradition in the event of political insurrection, and
how could it be guarded?
How have traditional African musical instruments and styles survived in the rapidly changing
world, and is this a good thing?

Recommended DVDs and Videos

Discovering the Music of Africa, directed by Bernard Wilets; advisor, Sam Chianis. Video (22 min.).

Music and rhythms of Africa, especially Ghana, how they are used both as music and means of
communication. Bells, rattles drums. Originally released on film in 1967.
Atumpan: The Talking Drums of Ghana, filmed and directed by Mantle Hood (1964), (40 min.).
Institute of Ethnomusicology, UCLA, in cooperation with African Studies Center, and School of
Music and Drama. Institute of African Studies, University of Ghana. Documentary about Akan
ceremonial drums and the different uses for each drum, who may use them, how they are made.
African Drums: The Talking Drums of Techiman, directed by Christopher D. Roy; narrator, Kofi
Sakyi, DVD-R (40 min.). Many African people speak tonal languages whose tonal patterns can be
imitated by drums. Among the most famous of these people are the Akan-speaking peoples of Ghana,
including the Asante, Fanti, and Bono people of the kingdom of Techiman. The DVD shows the drum
ensemble of the Bono people of Techiman in the royal palace at the funeral of the late Omanhene, in
February 2004. The drummers play a series of seven songs, which are repeated by both the senior,
elder drummers, and by their young apprentices.
Music of the Spirits: The Mbira Music of Stella Nekati-Chiweshe, filmed and directed by Ron and
Ophera Hallis, (1989), (30 min.). Stella Nekati-Chiweshe, a woman of Zimbabwe, is a virtuoso of the
mbira. Stella sings and plays, and speaks of her struggle to learn in a field dominated by men. She
recounts political struggles and revolution.
Ngoma Buntibe: Music of the Valley Tonga, Zimbabwe, filmed by Ron Hallis (2000), (7 min.). Ngoma
Buntibe is the ceremonial music and dance of the Tonga people of northern Matabeleland, Zimbabwe.
Ngoma Buntibe is performed on formal occasions and at funerals when the dancers follow the paths
the deceased used to walk. The horn-whistles playing in hocket are from kudu and antelope, the drum
membranes from elephant hide.

Chapter 8, The Musical Culture of Europe, offers an ethnomusicological view of European
music from its folk sources to their incorporation into nationalist styles. The first section illustrates the
variety of music found in Vienna in any era, exhibited mainly by street musicians who were always a
part of Viennese culture. Classical music enthusiasts regard Vienna as the capital of music,
recognizing composers such as Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, and Mahler, who, to the contrary,
were not Viennese, but outsiders who came to Vienna for its musical diversity. Vienna was always
musically diverse, providing musical opportunities for German, Hungarian, Slovak, Turkish, Italian,
Spanish, and today, Andean folk musicians. Viennas diversity in representing folk music is why
composers flocked there, to learn how to incorporate its music into compositions. Viennas folk
music made it the music capital. It offered many kinds of folk music.
Streets and Stages
Staatsoper - The National, or State, Opera of Austria, serving the Habsburg court during
the Austro-Hungarian Empire until World War I
Gesellschaft fr Musikfreunde - Society for the Friends of Music: Institutional home to
concert halls, archives, and artistic monuments that recognize the history of Austrian music
While grand works were performed on the Viennese stage, folk musicians have always
been performing in the streets and in bars.
Work songs songs sung to accompany work, also sung by street vendors
Heuriger an Austrian wine garden, which is often a site for traditional music
Schrammelmusik urban folk music of Vienna, named after Johann and Josef
Schrammel, two nineteenth-century musicians who made this style of folklike
(volkstmlich) urban music famous and contributed to the compositions and performance
practice of the tradition
Volkstmlich folklike music of Central Europe, in which traditional folk and modern
popular musics are often mixed
Klezmer music Jewish instrumental musicians, active in social events and rites of
passage in Eastern Europe prior to the Holocaust and revived in Europe and North America
at the end of the twentieth century
Lndler a slow Austrian rural dance in triple meter, often used for social rituals and
Multicultural Europe
Roma and Sinti the two largest groups of Gypsy communities in Europe. In spite of its
popular usage, the term Gypsy is pejorative.
Saami circumpolar peoples, living in northern Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Russia,
whose musical practices in Europe mix indigenous and modern sounds
European Unity in Modern Europe
Bla Bartk (1881-1945) Hungarian composer and folk music collector
Parlando rubato a speech-like melody with much give-and-take in the rhythmic structure
Pentatonicism melodic structure based on scales with five pitches, often revealing an
historically early stage of folk-music style
Speech islands Sprachinseln; the German-speaking cultural islands in Eastern
Europe, given nationalist significance by Germany prior to World War II

Music in Peasant and Folk Societies

Volkslied German for folksong of traditional European societies, included under this
single term by the end of the eighteenth-century
Johann Gottfried Herder (1744-1803) a German folklorist who grew up in the Baltic
area of Eastern Europe. He coined the term Volkslied, and the collection and study of folk
music spread throughout Europe.
The Individual and Society, Creativity and Community
In the idealized folk society, all music theoretically belongs to the community. The total
musical product depends on a groups willingness to subsume individual identity into that
of the ensemble.
Tamburitza a string ensemble of southeastern Europe and the diasporas of ethnic and
national groups from the Balkans
String quartet - the ensemble of European chamber music that idealizes the social and
musical equality of the modern era; it includes two violins, viola, violoncello
German male choruses in the nineteenth century became a symbol for the power of
nationalism embedded in and expressed by the Volk, the German people. Similarly, large
choruses in socialist Eastern Europe during the second half of the twentieth century
symbolized the achievement of the modern socialist state.
Musical Instruments
Musical instruments are symbols of the unity and distinctiveness of European musical life.
Saz a lute-like instrument used widely in Turkish art music and spread throughout the
region of southeastern Europe, into which the Ottoman Empire extended
Hummel a dulcimer played widely throughout Sweden and associated historically with
Swedish folk styles
Gusle a bowed lap fiddle, played throughout southeastern Europe, especially to
accompany narrative epic repertories
Guslar a player of the bowed spike fiddle called the gusle, from Montenegro
Minnesinger Medieval singer who often accompanied himself on the lute
Musical Professionalism and Social Structure
Periodic attempts to keep instruments out of Christian religious music are among the
hallmarks of conservative religious movements. The Puritans, when they ascended to
power in 1649, forming the English Commonwealth, inveighed against instruments in
churches and ordered that organs be destroyed.
Instrumentalists acquire the status of specialists and, very often, professionals.
Broadside ballad a printed version of an English folksong, usually combining a wellknown melody with a topical text, printed on large sheets and sold inexpensively. The
broadside composer is often anonymous.
Eurovision Song Contest The largest popular-song contest in the world, established in
1956 by the European Broadcasting Union, and pitting national entries against each in an
annual spectacle judged by telephone voting from the entering nations.
Key Concepts for the Unit
Music and History:
Folk music has been seen as a means of revealing and articulating history in both musical and
cultural ways. But the construction of history out of folk song styles has clear ideological and
nationalistic implications. The historicization of national music, too, was a statement of
identity serving political ends. Is the same strategy still used today? Folk music is periodically
revitalized to highlight contemporary political issues.

Music in Peasant and Folk Societies:

Folk music was an eighteenth-century concept, part of a larger intellectual movement that
romanticized rural life.
Music in Urban Society:
Urbanization was on the increase during this period. The folk represented an earlier, more
innocent era viewed through the fuzzy light of nostalgia by displaced city dwellers. In the
city, there was an increasing tendency toward specialization of musicians: hereditary musical
castes (Gypsies) and ascribed outsiders (Jewish musicians) were assigned the low status task
of providing entertainment music to order.
National Styles:
More the result of politics than of a consistent and unified history, national musics may
combine disparate styles and repertoires from different parts of a country, symbolizing a
modern kind of unity.
Concerts and the Virtuoso:
Another legacy of the 19th century was the rise of virtuosity. The virtuoso became a celebrity
for whom normal social mores were suspended. In many ways, the Great Artist was as
much of a marginal person as the professional specialist, for whom normal mores were also
relaxed: they were troublemakers, attractive lovers, and had the freedom to move around.
Individual and Society:
The idealized form of folk music is an aesthetic metaphor for community. In art music, the
string quartet and chamber ensemble fill a similar role egalitarian in contrast to the
symphony orchestra with its urban hierarchical structure and division of labor.
Compare the piano (the product of an industrial age which, during the colonial era in
particular, became a symbol of the hegemony of European music), with the violin (now
considered indigenous in many parts of the world, e.g., South India).
The Eurovision Song Contest as a Metaphor for Modern Europe:
The contest receives continent-wide coverage, although it includes some countries (such as
Turkey, Egypt, Cyprus, and Israel) that are not European. Many different styles are offered,
but the winner is always the blandest, most compromised sound, something felt to be
generically European.
Listening Skills
Hearing the Folk in Classical and the Classical in Folk Music:
Listening to classical music selections of any European classical or nationalist composer,
including Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, Mahler, Tchaikovsky, Grieg, Sibelius, etc.,
students should be able to conceptualize the folk melodies in the art music context. On the
other hand, listening to selections of European folk music, students should conceptualize how
an art music composer would incorporate the melodies in the art music style.
Students should be able to hear the noticeable timbral differences between European folk
instruments and their technologically developed counterparts for symphonic and chamber
music works.

Chapter Section Summaries

The many musics of Vienna
History contains labels for musical styles that are distinctively Viennese such as Viennese
classicism, Viennese waltzes, and even the Second Viennese School of avant-garde composers
in the early twentieth century. But Viennese music also includes folk music. The historical view lies in
the existence of a historical canon, a series of repertories created by composers who lived in Vienna
because it provided ideal conditions for the creation and performance of music. Thus music
symbolizes the unbroken and persistent history of the city.
Another view of Viennese music concentrates not on the central core but rather on the
periphery, on the tendency of Vienna to attract outsiders. Relatively few of the composers generally
associated with Vienna were originally from the city or received their musical education there;
Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, Brahms, and Mahler were outsiders, and their biographies demonstrate
vividly that being accepted as an insider was no easy task. Clearly, the modern street musicians are not
so different from the pantheon of Viennese composers in their relation to the city: the outsider status
of the Hungarian folk- singers or the Andean panpipe ensemble.
A third view of Viennese music challenges the historical nature of the first two and poses
what we might call postmodern arguments. According to this view, Vienna forms a sort of cultural
backdrop that permits unexpected, even jarring, juxtapositions. There are, accordingly, certain
conditions that foster Viennese musics at particular moments, but these are almost random. Such a
view helps to explain why the old and the new, the classical and the avant-garde, opera and street
music exist side by side. Vienna is no less important to the various juxtapositions because it provides a
cultural template that encourages them.
Listening Example
Spanish Work Song: La Trilla. Textbook CD 2, track 19.
This work song from the Andalusia region of Spain reveals many of the regions historical
connections to the Muslim culture of North Africa, the Mediterranean, and the Iberian Peninsula. The
song itself would traditionally accompany grain threshing, and it therefore reflects periods of
repetitive movement and repose. The bells that begin the example and keep a steady sense of rhythm
and meter are here more stylized because of the nature of the recording in a studio, but originally they
would have been attached to the animal assisting in the threshing.
The alternation between speaking voice and singing voice determines the structure of the
song itself. The speaking voice communicates more directly to animals assisting in the work, whereas
the singing voice employs melisma, the extensive performance of melody that creates the feeling of
arabesque in this example. We witness, then, a shift between speech and song, hence the threshold
between the use of voice in music and communication that borders on music. Though used for a work
song, the melody is very complex, showing a tendency to move between one mode, or collection of
pitches, and another.

The song is ushered in by the bells accompanying the movement of work.

Speaking initiates the song as communication between the worker and the animal.
Melismatic singing begins, spinning out a long melody in discrete sections.
Speech again returns, punctuating the sections of song and creating a sense of relief.
Return to melismatic singing.
Speech returns to punctuate.
Return to melismatic singing.


Speech returns to punctuate.

Return to melismatic singing, with evidence of approaching conclusion because of
the brevity of the section.
Communicative speech brings the song to its conclusion.

Listening Example
Das Wiener Fiakerlied (The Viennese Coachmans Song), composed by Gustav Pick, performed
by Stewart Figa, baritone, and the New Budapest Orpheum Society, Philip Bohlman, Artistic Director.
Textbook CD 2, track 20.
The Viennese Coachmans Song (1884) was the biggest hit from turn-of-the-century Vienna. The
song tells a rags-to-riches tale of a simple coachman who was able to offer rides to the most prominent
citizens of the day. The journeys in the song, therefore, follow the city streets, and they also map the
cultural history of a changing world, one in which the coach would eventually become obsolete as
Europe modernized. The song, too, crosses a border between folk styles it begins as a march from
the country, and then the refrain is a waltz from the city. It uses urban dialects and the sounds of
popular songs from the day, not unlike those that might have been flowing into and out of Strauss
operettas and cabaret.
Stewart Figa sings in a style with the German inflected by Yiddish, signifying the growing
immigration of Jews from rural Eastern Europe into modern Vienna (the composer, Gustav Pick, was
an example of such immigration). Figas performance career ranges from his profession as a Jewish
synagogue cantor to work on the Yiddish stage, and with the revival cabaret ensemble, the New
Budapest Orpheum Society.

Introduction, cabaret-style band

Verse one, in rural march style, evoking the horses that bear the coach
The refrain begins, employing an urban waltz style
Verse two begins
Refrain of verse two
Verse three begins, with the narrative bringing the coachmans life to a close
Refrain of verse three

Multicultural Europe
Individuals, most of the time, identify with the culture of the town, region, or nation in which
they live, and with their regional musical style rather than with an abstract European unity. It has been
characteristic of music in Europe that patterns of regional and cultural identity have remained
especially pronounced, even as mass culture encroaches in the twenty-first century. The geographic
area surrounding Lake Constance in Central Europe, for example, belongs to a single cultural area in
which a single dialect of German is spoken, and its musical styles and repertories are related by a long
history. This small area nevertheless includes parts of four nations (Germany, Switzerland, Austria,
and Liechtenstein). Even though the folk musics of Germany, Switzerland, and Austria are distinct at
a national level, the Lake Constance region plays the decisive role in determining musical unity.
The musical areas of Europe also result from groups of people who share a way of life and a
distinctive music, even when these have little to do with national and political boundaries. Jewish,
Saami, and Roma (Gypsy) music cultures in Europe, for example, are circumscribed primarily by
boundaries that arise within these communities. Roma communities exist throughout Europe, having
adapted to many different socioeconomic settings. Roma musicians have traditionally adapted to the

music in countries where they settled, often fulfilling specialized roles as performers in non-Roma
society. This adaptability has not erased a distinctively Roma musical life. Bolstering that musical life
have been the customs, languages, and social functions unique to the Roma community. It is not quite
proper to speak of Roma culture as a homogeneous whole. Instead, we must always keep in mind
the distinctive linguistic and cultural communities that make up the whole.
If we were to generalize about the music of Roma and Sinti in Europe, we would need to take
into consideration a process of negotiation between the community and the larger nation or cultural
area of which it was a part.
Listening Example
Khused (Chassidic Dance), performed by Gheorghe Covaci, Sr., and Gheorghe Covaci, Jr., recorded
by Rudolf Pietsch and Philip V. Bohlman, 23 February 1996, Vadu Izei, Romania. Textbook CD 2,
track 21.
The Roma musicians heard on this CD track borrow from Jewish styles and repertory
previously performed by Jewish musicians in northern Romania. Two Roma musicians, a father and
son renowned throughout the Transylvanian Carpathian Mountains near the Ukrainian border, perform
a wedding dance from the Jewish repertory that had wide currency in Romania prior to the Holocaust.
The dance itself is strophic, here with four verses, each increasing in tempo from its predecessor and
revealing the generally ecstatic nature of the wedding celebrations of Chassidic Jews, observant
communities following the spiritual traditions of the Baal Shem Tov, a rabbi from the eighteenth
The Covacis play a violin and a guitar, mixing Roma styles (e.g., playing the guitar upright in
the lap) with Romanian and Roma styles. These musicians reveal the ways in which earlier Jewish
repertories have come to serve other ethnic communities in Eastern Europe, and they particularly
illustrate the centuries-long exchange between Roma and Jewish neighbors.

Opening of verse 1
Verse 2 begins, already with tempo increase
Verse 3, again with gradual increase
Verse 4, increasingly ecstatic, with a sudden point of ending

European unity in modern Europe

Hungarian and German folk-music scholars have created classification schemes that assert the
historical presence and importance of folk musics. European folk music in general falls into
repertories that have national, linguistic, or cultural designations, suggesting that those who describe
these repertories feel that unity is fundamental to what folk music really is. Scholars in several
countries have gone so far as to recognize patterns of unified history in their national folk musics. This
is particularly evident in Hungarian and English folk music; but elsewhere, too, we encounter the
belief that the music of the past is related to the music of the present.
Folk music can reveal and articulate history in both musical and cultural (or, better, political
and nationalistic) ways. The classification of Hungarian folk song is based on claims about whether
musical style has been relatively unbroken since the time Hungarian people lived in Asia (old style) or
whether it has absorbed influences from surrounding European peoples (new style; see chart below).
Bela Bartks collections of Hungarian folk song demonstrate the characteristics of the old style in
every way.
Comparison of Old and New Style Hungarian Folksong

Old style
A five-note, or pentatonic, scale, in which no
half- steps were found.
Melodies or phrases that started high and ended
A melody in two halves, in which the second half
repeated the first, only at the interval of the fifth
A steady rhythmic style Bartk called parlando
Only Hungarian musical elements are heard.
No influence of popular song or other outside

New style
Whereas pentatonic scales are occasionally
found, more common are the so-called church
modes or major mode.
Melodies are repetitive, and they form arches
rather than descending contours.
Four-line verses like the following (A5 designates
a phrase transposed a fifth higher); A A5 A5 A; A
A5 B A; A B B A.
Rhythm is not speechlike but rather
dancelike, demonstrating what Bartk called
tempo giusto.
Non-Hungarian musical elements have been
The influence of popular song, particularly
Hungarian popular genres from the nineteenth
century, is evident.

Listening Example
The Owl Womans Ballad, Kati Szvork, singer, and Ferenc Kiss, Jews Harp. Textbook CD 2,
track 22.
The Owl Womans Ballad is a clear example of the Old Style of Hungarian folk song. It
has a four-line structure, ABAB, in which the contour of the B lines are similar to those of the A lines,
only at an interval of the fifth lower. The slow tempo and elaborate style are characteristic of what
Bla Bartk called parlando rubato, a speech-like melody with much give-and-take in the rhythmic
structure. The words are clearly important, also because this is a ballad, in which a story is being told.

First verse begins, line A

Line B, a transposition down a fifth, as in the Old Style
Line A, as at the opening of the verse
Line B concludes the verse
Verse 2 begins, with the same form as verse 1
Verse 3 begins, but concludes after the A and B lines

One of the first things we notice when we compare the musical traits of the old and new styles
is that there is much more flexibility in those traits recognized as new. To fulfill the requisites for
old style is very difficult, but virtually any Hungarian songfolk, popular, or even religious
fits into the new style. If the two are compared even further, we realize that, in certain ways, they are
not so different. The transposition by fifths is as much old as it is new style, excluding the fact that a
falling melody should somehow be older. Pentatonicism, too, is not excluded from the new style, and
one might argue that the ornamentation in the old style has a tendency to fill in the gaps in its
characteristic five-note scale.
The Hungarian construction of history out of folk-song style has clear nationalistic
implications, and these are important to understand as ideas about European music. Transposition by
fifths was important to Bartk because it was quite rare in Western and Central European music, but
more common in Central and East Asian traditions. A style of music that utilized transposition by
fifths, therefore, proved that the integrity of the Hungarian people had been maintained to some
measure, at least since they left Asia to settle in Europe. The close relation of the old style to speech
(parlando) also reveals an attempt to link music to the uniqueness of Hungarian culture, because the

Hungarian language is not a member of the Indo-European family. Clearly, identifying songs in the
old style provided a strong argument for Hungarian nationalism. Recognizing that songs in the new
style had been influenced from the outsidethat their rhythms were regularized and loosened from
their connection to languagemade an equally strong nationalistic appeal.
Listening Example
Bla Bartk: Two Duos from the 44 Violin Duos Lullaby and Dance from Maramoros,
performed by Andrea F. Bohlman and Benjamin H. Bohlman. Recorded by Philip V. Bohlman.
Textbook CD 2, track 23.
These two violin duos illustrate the contrastive styles of Hungarian folk music, the parlando
rubato style of Lullaby and the tempo giusto style of Dance from Maramoros. Parlando rubato is
speech-like, and it follows the nuances of song and evokes in an instrumental piece the contours of
language through embellishment. Clearly, a lullaby would be speech-like. A dance, in contrast, has a
quick tempo that allows for rapid and coordinated movement on the dance floor. Maramoros is the
Hungarian designation for Transylvania, which indicates that Bartk composed this dance to reflect
characteristics of and Roma music. In the Lullaby, the two violins might represent a child and a
parent at bedtime, one singing gently, the other declaiming forcefully that it might be time to go to
sleep. In the Dance from Maramoros, the variety of string sounds in Hungarian folk music is clear,
from the percussive sound of the second violin to the plucking of the same instrument toward the end
of the brief dance.

Solo voice, with gentle melody begins

The other voice enters, showing firmness
Dialogue, or conversation, begins between the
two voices
Gentleness increases in both voices
The voices succumb to fatigue

Dance from Maramoros

This dance is fast and through-composed, evoking the sound of an Hungarian string band.
Music in peasant and folk societies
European ideas about music have a great deal to do with shared historical experiences and the
ways these experiences have formed modern European societies. Early in European history, social
relations were relatively undifferentiated and rural, and yet a common cultureconsisting of
language, folklore, and belief systemprovided cohesion. Music played a role in expressing the
common culture of a people, because it was in a language shared by the people and was a part of their
daily lives and rituals. Music was thought to be inseparable from the essence of a culture. As such, it
could express the cultures past, share traits of a language, and articulate religious belief. In doing so,
music differentiated one society from another on the basis of national, regional, and linguistic styles.
This type of music is folk music. Folk music is a particularly European concept. Johann Gottfried
Herder, a German, who grew up in the Baltic area of Eastern Europe, coined the term Volkslied in the
late eighteenth century, and the collection and study of folk music spread throughout Europe by the
end of the nineteenth century. The gap between a village folk song and a symphonic poem using it
was great, but it is significant for our consideration of European music that folklorists, composers, and
many other intellectuals found it vital to bridge that gap.

Listening Example
Black Is, performed by Anish (Ned Folkerth, Aileen Dillane, Kevin Moran, Aidan OToole,
Brendan Bulger). Textbook CD 2, track 24.
In this contemporary version of Black Is the Color of My True Loves Hair, folk music
and popular music interact in complex ways. The text of the lyrical song is well known in Irish
American traditions, and it has circulated through various folk and even country music versions.

Introduction, with instruments entering to add new layers and dimensions

First verse of Black Is the Color of My True Loves Hair begins, followed
by multiple verses
Instrumental interlude, with traditional and more contemporary improvisation
Return of Black Is the Color of My True Loves Hair
Final vocal riffing on Oh, I love the ground whereon she stands

Music and religion

Folk music that accompanies ritual or that embodies spiritual themes is overwhelmingly
religious in many communities. A harvest or wedding song, for example, may articulate a
communitys most fundamental sacred beliefs. Not only are Norwegian folk songs predominantly
religious in thematic content, but many are actually variants of hymns that have entered oral tradition.
Religious pilgrimages have generated new songs and formed new communities that give these songs
special meaning and function. During the Cold War, religious music became a primary voice for
resistance, especially in Eastern Europe. In the political transition in Eastern Europe, the music of
pilgrimage has mobilized villages and nations alike as they sought new identities in shared religious
Concerts have become a form of musical ritual particularly suited to modern Europe. Some
concerts may preserve one type of musical ritual, while others become the moment for radical
innovation. The European concert empowers musicians to re-contextualize music, to bring rural folk
music to the streets of the city, or to relocate sacred music in a public auditorium. Though an idea
shared by all Europeans, the concert has nevertheless remained one of the major sources of musical
diversity in modern times.
Concerts inevitably shift a certain degree of attention to the performer as a result of splitting
musical participation into the two groups of music makers and audience. The performer acquires
importance because of the skill he or she possesses and the role the audience wants the performer to
play. Virtuosity often becomes one of the markers of this role, and outstanding musicians become
extremely important in European ideas about music.
Listening Example
Steirischer mit Gestanzln (Dance from Styria, with Stanzas), performed by Die Tanzgeiger (The
Dance Fiddlers). Textbook CD 3, track 1.
Performed by Austrias premier folk-music ensemble, The Dance Fiddlers, this dance
moves across the cultural landscape of Austria and its changing history. The dance starts in Styria, the
mountainous area with Graz as its provincial capital, and it eventually ends up in modern Vienna, the
cosmopolitan world of the capital on the Danube. A Steirischer, or Styrian, is in this case a
Lndler, a slow rural dance in triple meter, often used for social rituals and courting. Once the waltz

begins about one third of the way through the dance, the style changes. A Gstanzln is a style of
improvisatory verses, punctuated by instrumental interludes. There is much humor in the verses,
actually a kind of jousting between the singers, each one trying to show that he is cleverer than his

Lndler, slow dance in triple meter
Waltz begins, a fast dance in triple meter
The first vocal stanza enters
Instrumental interlude
Second vocal stanza enters, responding to the first
Instrumental interlude
Third vocal stanza
Instrumental interlude
Fourth vocal stanza
Instrumental interlude
Fifth vocal stanza, nonsense text of counting forward and backward
Instrumental interlude
Sixth vocal stanza, with joke about the nuclear disaster at Chernobyl
Final instrumental part

Folk instruments
Musical instruments have long served as some of the most commonly employed criteria for
classifying music. Folk instruments were constructed within the society or community where the
particular musical repertory was performed. In the idealized folk society of Europe, an instrument is
somehow the extension of the individual musician yet a marker of the communitys musical identity.
It is a specific product that we should be able to trace to its maker and the particular roles it plays in a
given community.
Listening Example
Epic Song from Montenegro: Tzarina Milica und Duke Vladeta, Boro Roganovic, gusle player,
recorded by Philip V. Bohlman. Textbook CD 3, track 2.
The Montenegrin guslar a player of the bowed spike fiddle, called the gusle performs a
traditional Balkan epic song from the Kosovo Cycle. The songs in this cycle move between oral and
written traditions, and they describe, in a series of different accounts about historical events, the
struggle between the Ottoman Empire and Christians for southeastern Europe.
The style of the song is typical of an epic song, with single lines of melody unfolding one
after the other. The guslar performs this song more or less as he has his entire life, but he also
introduces elements of improvisation, especially when accompanying himself.
After a brief gusle solo, the singer begins at approximately 0:30, and then continues through a series
of melodic variations until the song ends at approximately 6:28. This is relatively short for this type of
epic song, which can extend as long as necessary to tell a story.
When Instruments Tell Stories
Europeans tend to anthropomorphize instruments and regard them as music makers with
human qualities. We refer to the parts of an instrumental piece as its voices, and it is fairly common

to relate these directly to human vocal ranges. Europeans, like peoples throughout the world, ascribe
human qualities to instruments (think of how many instruments have necks, that part of the human
body in which the vocal cords are located) and decorate instruments with human or animal figurations.
Instruments become the musicians partner in music making, and they often assist in telling a story,
which is one of the functions that makes them humanlike.
Musical Instruments in an Industrial Age
No instrument symbolizes the impact of technology on European musical instruments as fully
as the piano. Invented at the beginning of the eighteenth century in Italy, piano makers transformed
the direct striking or plucking action of the clavichord and harpsichord into a more powerful action by
employing a series of levers connected by joints. The pianos new design not only allowed for a
broader palette of sound colors, but made it possible for the piano to dominate the other instruments
with which it was played. As the piano grew larger, so did its sound; as its machinery grew more
complicated, the factories that manufactured it became more sophisticated and efficient. The
technology to create pianos kept pace with the demand for an instrument that had its own solo
repertory and a role in many other repertories. The piano both appeared on the stage of the largest
concert hall and stood in the parlor of the bourgeois home.
History and Social Structure in European Musical Life
Few modern scholars accept the notion that a folk song or any other form of popular music
came into existence simply because of the will and collective action of the community. Instead, an
individual, usually a musician with some specialized role in the musical life of the community, creates
a piece of music, composes it, and establishes its position in a particular music history. English folk
songs might begin their history in oral tradition by first being printed on a broadside and sold on the
street, largely to earn profit for the composer, printer, and hawker. The broadside ballad, which often
appeals because it captures the news of the moment, is only possible if it embodies certain aspects of
the communitys mentalit and relies on the communitys knowledge of common melodies, yet it is
the individual who composes these relations in the ballad.
European music is a complex combination of different musical styles, created by
many different peoples.
Music is used by various European countries as a mean of defining themselves and
creating a unified culture.
The story of Europes music is closely related to its history.
European folk music is often associated with a specific cultural group or regional
Urbanization, beginning in the Middle Ages, introduced a wider variety of musics
and musical instruments to performers and audiences.
The formal concert developed in Europe as the primary way of hearing musical
performance, with set rules_for both_the performers and the audience.
As industrializaion spread through Eur/pe beginning iN0the 18th century, new
instrumeNts were inventednotably the pianothat revolutionized how music
was performed.
The Eurovision Song CoNtest is an annual event that reflects both the tensions
between local and international musical styles, and underscores the diversity in
European music today.
Discussion Questions


How can we compare a multicultural urban musical environment such as New York, London,
or Chicago to Vienna?
What can we classify aS the folk music of our country, and hoW have nationalist cOmposers
incorporated it into their compositions?
What types of music migHt we find in ouR society which are COmmunal and egalitarian, as
are folk music types of Europe?

Recomme.ded DVDS or Vide/s

JVC Video Anthology Of World_Music and Dance, Europe ReGIonal SeT. Produced by IChikawa
KatsumorI, EnglIsh languAge versIon in collaboration witH Smithsonian/Folkways Recordings,
distributed by Rounder Records (1990).

Music in Latin America is extremely diverse. Centuries of colonial interactions produced a range of
hybrid cultures. European (predominantly Spanish,but in Brazil Portuguese) musical Traits aRe
incorporated with Native technology and expresSion. Folk vErsions of the violin and guitar are
widespread, and the musical sound is distinctly mestizo. (Mestizos are Latin American people oF
mixed European and Native ancestry or culture.). Although in the past used as a racial category, it
now more accurately denotes the variable incorporation of Iberian (Spanish and Portuguese) and
indigenous cultural heritages.
An Andean Mestizo Festival in Paucartambo, Peru
Cuzco the ancient capital of the Incas
Chunchos music played on flutes and drums
Kena an end-notched flute
Wayno, or huayno the most widespread Andean mestizo song-dance genre in Peru,
alsoperformed by some indigenous musicians. The song texts are strophic and the tunes
comprise short sections in forms such as AABB. Waynos are in duple meter with a
rhythmic feel varying between an eighth-and-two-sixteen-note figure and an eighth-note
Orquesta tipica a mixed ensemble of European instruments and indigenous Andean
Sociocultural Heritages
Pre-Columbian states of the Aztecs and Mayas of Mesoamerica, and the Incas of the
Andes. Colonialism and Catholicism brought by Iberian culture (Spanish and Portuguese).
Africans brought as slaves and escaped.
Candombl an Afro-Brazilian religion involving Christianity and West African religious
beliefs and musical practices
Mestizo Musical Values
Marimba wooden keyed xylophone, originally from Africa, widely popular in Latin
America, still played on the Pacific coast of Columbia and Ecuador
Missionaries brought stringed instruments.
Parallel thirds the interval from do to mi; or sixths, do to la
Strophic form music that stays the same while lyrics change from stanza to stanza
Copla a four octosyllabic-line stanza
Latin America has more unique variants of the guitar than any other region on earth.
In the twentieth century, the diatonic button accordions became played.
Sesquialtera - the combination/juxtaposition of duple and triple rhythmic patterns, both
simultaneously in different instrumental parts, or sequentially in the same part; also called
hemiola. Sesquialtera is used in Peruvian marinera and yarav, Venezuelan joropo,
Mexican son, Chilean and Bolivian cueca, Argentine zamba, Bolivian and Argentina triste.
Marinera mestizo song-dance genre of Peru in sesquialtera rhythm
Yarav a slow, sad, lyrical mestizo song genre from Peru
Jarocho ensemble a musical group from the rural, southern coastal region of Veracruz
state. It includes a large diatonic harp, a 4-string guitar (requinto), and one or more jaranas
(a small guitar with 8 strings).
Son Mexicos most important song-dance genre, a strophic song usually on romantic
themes and in many regions characterized by sesquialtera rhythm.

Huasteco ensemble A Mexican group hailing from Northern Veracruz and Tamaulipas
state, featuring violin accompanied by two types of guitars.
Huapanguera a guitar variant, larger than a guitar, and with eight strings
Mariachi an ensemble type originally from Jalisco, Mexico consisting of two or more
violins, vihuela, guitarrn, two trumpets, and various guitars.
Vihuela - a small five-string guitar variant with a convex back, used for percussive
Guitarrn a large acoustic bass guitar with a convex back
Conjunto norteos: a popular dance band type originally associated with northern Mexicoand southern Texas, featuring three-row button accordion, bajo sexto (12-string guitar),
bass and drums
Charango an Andean ten-string guitar variant smaller than the guitar

Native American Musical Values

Aymara and Quechua languages of southern Peru
Siku panpipes
Kena end-notched flute
Pinkillu and tarka cane vertical duct flutes with a recorder-like mouthpiece
Pitu side-blown cane flute
Wankara or bombos large double-headed drums
Caja large indigenous Aymara snare drum
Suy a Native American people of the Brazilian Amazon with an egalitarian society
Akia Suy simultaneous song singing along with shouts, laughter, and other vocal sound
Cacophony a Western word that means bad sounding
African American musical values
Marimba playing, single-headed and conical drums, interlocking parts, ostinato with
improvised variation
Berimbau a percussive mu_icaL bow diffusEd tO the AmeRicas from Africa
Marmbula a large box lamellaphone
Papai benta a lamellaphone of Surinam
Orixas deities hailing from the Yoruba reliGIon of Nigera
AGog West African styled double-bell
Atabaques a trio of dfferent-sized single-headed drums
Surdo larg bass drum
PandEiro tambourine
TAmborm a small hand-held drum played with a Single Stick
Reco-reo a metal spRing scraper
Cuca a friction drum
CavaquinHO a small foUr-strinG guitar
Key Concepts for the Chapter
SocioCultural HeritaGe:
Three major sociocultural heritages have combined to different degrees in Different areAs to
crete_the conTemporary situation:
Indigenous AmerIndian traditions. Differentiated according to lowland Amazonian
and highland Andean groups.
Iberian TraditiOns of Spain nd PortUgal. Transplanted during thE colonIal era
And dIfferentIated according to social class: crIollos (New World-born Spanish or
Portuguese) form an elite s_cial group, whIle mEstizos (those of mixed racE
are lower claSS.
African traditioNs. BRought by slaves during the colonial era and still

ConceNtrated in coastal areas.

Relationship between Musical and Social Values:
Relatively eGalitarian coMmunIties prefer music With equal participation among membeRs,
opposed to hiErarchical communities that pref%r music with solo and lead parts.
Use of Music to Construct and Express Social Identity:
This is a universal phenomenon, but deeper listening reveals that the polyrhythms are not as
complex as the African examples.
Typical Latin American instruments
Indigenous (Pre-Columbian):
Teponaztli and tunkul (slit drums), huehuetl (single-headed drum), siku (panpipes), flutes,
such as kena (end-notched), pinkly (side-blown), and tarka (duct); and wakrapuku (conch
shell trumpet)
Diatonic harp; violin; Spanish guitar and local subtypes such as charango (Peruvian/Bolivian,
small body, five groups of strings, and a round or flat back), vihuela (Mexican, small body,
five strings, and a convex back), huapanguera (Mexican, eight strings in five courses), jarana
(Mexican, small body, five strings), guitarrn (Mexican, large four or five string bass guitar
with a round back), cuatro (Venezuelan, small body, four strings), tiple (Colombian, four
courses of three strings each) and viola (Brazilian, five strings in double courses); and
accordion (piano and button)
Marimba (southern Mexico and Central America) drums, percussion instruments, musical
bow, and lamellaphone
Chapter Section Summaries
Mestizo musical values and musical styles: Paucartambo, Peru
The term mestizo is a relative concept that includes a blending of European with local
Native American (and in some cases, African) cultural heritages and worldviews. The fiesta in
Paucartambo celebrates the Virgin Mary, a Catholic saint, but one whose significance is derived
through syncretism with Pachamama, the Inca Earth Mother. Costumed dance groups tell the story,
each group representing a particular class of characters. Chunchos, the good guys, are pitted against
all possible types of outsidersQollas (uncivilized traders, the main enemy), Saqras (devils, the
Spanish colonists), Doctores (lawyers/government officials), Negros (black slaves), Chilenos
(Chileans), Chukchus (malaria carriers from the jungle), Majeos (liquor traders from the city), and
even hippie, camera-toting tourists. During the fiesta, the world is turned upside down and oppressors
can be ridiculed. The reversible nature of the world is emphasized by the Maqtas, clowns, who serve
as policemen during the fiesta.
Each dance group at the fiesta is accompanied by its own band, which plays music from an
established repertoire. There are three types of ensemble: European-style brass bands, indigenous preColumbian ensembles of side-blown flutes and drums, and orquestas tpicas, which combine European
and pre-Hispanic instruments, e.g., diatonic harps, violins, kenas, drums, and accordions. Together
they underline the coexistence and mixing of European and indigenous traditions. The musical style,
too, combines traditions: European triadic harmonies are mixed with Andean syncopated rhythms and
styles of instrumental performance (including a dense, breathy tone quality on the flute).

Listening Examples
Traditional Dance, Chunchos of Paucartambo. Textbook CD 3, track 3. Two wooden transverse flutes,
snare/bass drums, recorded by Thomas Turino
This dance tune is played by two flutes in a loose heterophonic texture. The melody consists of two
parts, a short A part (lasting about 6 seconds), and a B part (lasting about four seconds) played twice.
The drums repeat a simple rhythmic accompaniment throughout the performance.

A part
B part 2X
A part
B part 2X
A part
B part 2X, etc.

Traditional dance and song: Qollas Despedida. Textbook CD 3, track 4.

Qollas of Paucartambo: Two metal kenas (flutes), violin, mandolin, harp, accordion, drum, recorded
by Thomas Turino.
This syncopated five-note melody is carried by the violins, kenas, mandolin, and accordion to
produce a densely blended timbral quality. After the upward leap in the opening phrase, it has a
descending melody (moving from higher to lower pitches), common in both mestizo and indigenous
Andean music. The song is strophic with six lines per stanza, and has three short melodic sections in
AA BB B' B' form. The A and B sections each comprise two melodic phrases (A = a, b; B = c, d),
each phrase with its own line of text. The B' section, consists of melodic phrase d and the text lines
Ay Seorallay (d), Ay uestallay (d), serving as a repeated melodic-text refrain at the end of
each stanza. In this performance, the dancers sing as a unison chorus and their vocal renditions of the
entire (AABBBB) form is alternated with an instrumental rendition of the melody. Songs sung to
the Virgin by the Qollas and other dance groups are in Spanish, the indigenous Quechua language, or,
as in this performance, both, and thus clearly illustrate the blending of European and indigenous
cultures that defines Andean mestizo identity generally.

Instrumental Ensemble: A
Instrumental Ensemble: A
Instrumental Ensemble: B
Instrumental Ensemble: B
Instrumental Ensemble: B
Instrumental Ensemble: B
Vocal Chorus: AA BB BB, text in Quechua
Instrumental Ensemble: AA BB BB
Vocal Chorus (stanza two):
A: (a) Adis Adis
(Goodbye, goodbye)
(b) Compaeros mos
(Companions of mine)
A: (a) Adis Adis
(Goodbye, goodbye)
(b) Compaeros mos
(Companions of mine)
Hasta el ao
(Until the year)
Del tres mil
(Until the year 3000)
Hasta el ao
(Until the year)
Del tres mil
(Until the year 3000)
B (d): Ah Seorallay (Oh my lady! referring to the Virgin )


B (d): Ay ustallay (Oh my princess!)

Vocal Chorus repeats stanza two and AA BB BB form
Instrumental Ensemble: AA BB BB

Popular Wayno (Huayno) Music from Peru

La Pastorita Huaracina (Maria Alvarado), Quisiera Olvidarte. Textbook CD 3, track 5.
This classic recording was a hit record in Peru and is representative of the commercial wayno
music that gained tremendous popularity in the 1950s and 1960s. Ms. Alvarado, a long-time resident
of Lima, is accompanied by a string band in the style of her native highland department of Ancash; the
group is comprised of several guitars, mandolins, violins, and accordion. This is a strophic song in AA
BB form, with an animated closing section known as fuga (labeled section C, melodic phrases e and
f). As in the Qollas song, each section is comprised of two short phrases: A = a, b; B= c, d, each
phrase with its own text line. Note the quick high vocal ornaments (e.g., on the words he podido and
maldito so characteristic of highland women singers. Note also the humorous insults hurled at her
lover in the final lines of the fuga.
Mestizo musical values and musical styles: Veracruz, Mexico
In Mexico, mestizo son styles have strong regional identities. Many of these styles may be
heard in cities like Veracruz, performed by ambulantes (strolling musicians) who frequent local
outdoor cafs. The son is a song-dance genre that combines 3/4 and 6/8 meters (both simultaneously
and sequentially) and is played in a relatively fast tempo. Texts are often strophic, using coplas (fourline stanzas), instrumental introductions, interludes, and conclusions.
Son Jarocho:
Associated with the rural southern coastal region of Veracruz. The main
distinguishing features are the ensemble (voices, harp, and two guitar-type
instruments called jarana and requinto), a recurring harmonic/rhythmic bass pattern
(compas) that uses I, IV, and V chords, and solo-chorus vocals. Typically pieces
begin with an instrumental introduction in which the harp starts alone, is joined by
the plucked requinto, and finally by the strummed jarana. La Bamba is a wellknown example of the son Jarocho.
Son Huasteco:
A regional style from the northern Veracruz area. Distinguished by the strumming
patterns of guitar-type instruments (jarana and huapanguera), use of violin, and
falsetto singing. Also typical is the alternation of singers: often the first half of a
verse is repeated by a second singer before the last half is completed by the first
Mariachi began as a string band style from the Jalisco region of western Mexico.
Riding the wave of post-revolution Mexican nationalism (after 1910) and taken up by
the mass media in the 1930s, mariachi was adopted as a Pan-Mexican style. The
ensemble was enlarged, trumpets were added, and performers began to wear
Mexican charro (cowboy) outfits with large sombreros. The distinguishing feature in
the ensemble is its violins, trumpets, and guitar-type instruments of various sizes.
Listening Example
Son Huasteca: El Gustito. Textbook CD 3, track 6.
Performed by Los Caporales de Pamco Instrumentation: violin, guitarra quinta (or huapanguera),

jarana huasteca (smaller guitar), and vocals.

The violinist is at the center of the ensemble, playing richly with powerful, syncopated rhythmic
bowing, slides and other ornaments, double stops (bowing two strings at once) and extremely quick
finger work. The vocals are traded back and forth between the two lead singers, who frequently use
falsetto singing to create an exciting effect that distinguishes this style from jarocho and other regional
son styles.

Brief violin intro, and then (at 0:04) the guitars enter. Listen as the violin skitters
over the accompaniment, playing short phrases that cut across the regular strummed
rhythm. Listen also for the yodeled interjection at about 0:10.
Singer 1, verse 1
Singer 2, repeats verse 1, with many ornamented yodels
Singer 1, verse 2
Instrumental section in which the violin takes the lead
Singer 1, verse 3
Singer 2, repeats verse 3
Singer 1 verse 4
Instrumental section
Singer 1, verse 5
Singer 2 responds repeating verse 5
Singer 1, verse 6
Final instrumental; ends abruptly with final chords at 2:37

Native American musical values and musical styles: Aymara of Southern Peru
The Aymara of Huancan Province have a collective orientation to social life. Central values
such as communal solidarity and reciprocity, egalitarian relations, etc., order their world. Their ideas
about music and performance are based on the same principles.
Aymara music is played for public communal festivals by large community wind ensembles
(ranging from 12 to 50 members), comprising either panpipes or vertical flutes, accompanied by
drums. A fixed hierarchy within an ensemble is absent, and equal access to musical experience, as
well as the maintenance of amicable community relations, is more important than individual musical
ability or the overall quality of a performance. The ideal of playing as one, and not standing out
from the dense texture, is important in a culture in which individuals do not want to be singled out in
social situations.
Listening Example
Panpipe Music:
Aymara panpipe ensemble: Manuelita. Performed by Sikuris Centro Social de Conima, 24 sikus
(panpipes) of six different sizes; 2 bombos (drums); recorded by Thomas Turino in Lima, Peru, June
1986. Textbook CD 3, track 7.
Even in construction, panpipes are reflective of cooperative values within Aymara society. It
takes two people to play a melody because the scale is split between two panpipes (one partner has
only odd numbered scale degrees, the other has even numbered scale degrees). The dislike of standing
out from the crowd is reflected in the number of players in a group and in the way partners overlap
their pitches, so that there is never a gap in the sound. Structurally, the music is comprised of three
sections, which are repeated (AABBCC) ad infinitum. However, these melodies all have a formulaic
quality; there are only minor variations between each section (basically only the opening of each
section changes).

This sikuri piece is a slow piece in a genre simply referred to as lento (slow). The long-held
chords at the beginning of the piece and at section endings are typical of all pieces in this genre. Note
that this cadence formula is heard at the end of all sections except the second B and between the two C
sections. The accented strokes of the drumming pattern are designed to fit with the melody. Note the
overlapping and blending of instruments to create a dense texture.

Long-held chord, a standard introduction for the

lento genre
A section
A section
B section
B section
C section
C section
A section
A section
B section
B section
C section
C section
A section, etc.

Native American musical values and musical styles: Suy of Brazil

The Suy, an Amazonian Indian group with a vocal music culture, maintain a collective style
of musical performance at feasts. They have a repertoire of songs (ngre), which blends unison voices.
However, they also maintain a repertoire of individually owned songs (akia), which are shout songs
performed by a numerous of individuals simultaneously juxtaposed. While the resultant sound creates
a mixed texture that may be called cacophony in the West, it reflects different conception of the
relationship of an individual to the community, the environment, and the cosmos.
Recommended Reading
Anthony Seeger, Why Suy Sing: A Musical Anthropology of an Amazonian People (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 1987).
African American musical values and musical styles: Ecuador and Colombia
Many African musical principles are maintained in African American communities of Latin
America: cyclical forms, call-and-response, interlocking melodic and percussion parts, and an
appreciation of overlapping textures. Many African instruments are employed, featured in the
currulao. The currulao is a popular communal dance of Ecuador and Colombias Pacific coast,
wherein men and women court.
Listening Example
Marimba dance: Currulao Bambuco. Two-person marimba, drums, shakers, male and female vocals;
recorded by N. E. Whitten. Textbook CD 3, track 8.
African influences can be heard on this recording. The marimbas instruments play
interlocking duple and triple rhythms; vocal parts are organized in leader-chorus/call-and-response
patterns; melodies and rhythms are based on short, repetitive phrases (ostinatos); and the vocal style
features yodeling and other vocal sounds. The primary ostinato on which this piece is grounded is

supplied by the marimba which, with some variations, continues throughout the performance. As the
performance progresses, a female singer takes over from the male.

Fade up; the marimba supplies the basic ostinato: two short six-beat
phrases (in 6/8 meter) while the shakers emphasize a triple pattern.
Male lead vocalist enters; female chorus responds. The male leader often
uses a falsetto voice.
Instrumental section
Male lead singer, female chorus responds at 0:28
Male lead singer, women respond at 0:48
Male-call and female-response patterns become shorter.
A new melodic motif is sung by the women in yodeling style.
Female lead vocalist sings a phrase, with the female chorus quickly
responding with the yodeled motif.
Yodeled motif repeated by female vocalists with some subtle individual
Female lead singer re-enters and is answered by the female chorus with the
yodeled motif in call-and-response.
Female chorus yodeled motif repeated.
Female singer adds a new variation over the rest of the female chorus, track
fades out.

Recommended Listening
Afro-Hispanic Music from Western Colombia and Ecuador. Folkways FE 4376.
African American musical values and musical styles: Brazil
West African-derived musical styles, concepts, and instruments are found in Brazilian
candombl, as in Caribbean (vodoun, santeria, etc.). In Gege-Nago (Gege, a term for Ewe in Brazil;
Nago for Yoruba), the most African candombl cult of Baha, northeastern Brazil, music and
dance is fundamental to the worship of traditional Yoruba deities (orixas). Hours of chanting and
incessant drumming by a trio of atabaque (single-headed drums of varying size played with curved
sticks) and agogo (double bell) are used to induce hypnotic trance states in initiates. While in trance,
initiates (often women) are possessed by particular orixas. The bell plays an ostinato pattern as a time
line, the two smaller drums play interlocking ostinatos, and the largest (or mother drum), adds
improvised patterns to interact with the dancers. Yoruba texts are used but no longer understood.
Candombl activities are organized within cult houses, which have individual social and religious
Other candombl cults in the Baha region demonstrate varying levels of acculturation. The
most hybrid cult, called caboclo (Indian), includes indigenous and/or Iberian elements and
Portuguese texts. Congo-Angola-style cults lie somewhere in the middle in terms being hybrid,
maintaining many African elements, but playing drums with the hands. In hybrid cults, candombl
deities are often equated with Christian figures: e.g., Ogun (the god of war) is called St. Anthony;
Oxossi (the god of the hunt), St. George; and Oxala (the chief deity), Jesus.
Gege-Nago-style candombl music. From In Praise of Oxala and Other Gods: Black Music of South
America. Nonesuch, H-72036, A/6.
The candombl ensemble (agogo and three atabaques), with its repeated ostinato patterns and
call-and-response figures (employing male soloist and female chorus), are typically African.

According to the liner notes, the women dance in a circle for many hours. One by one they go into
trance, each one manifesting a trait of the orixa who has possessed her. Helpers assist entranced
women from the room and provide them with clothing and insignia sacred to the deityfor Ogun, a
sword; for Oxossi, a bow and arrow; for Oxala, a shepherds staff with small bells. Thus attired, the
initiates return to the ceremony and perform dances characteristic to the particular orixa. Hours later,
as the ceremony draws to a close, the deities withdraw and the initiates return to their normal state.
Caboclo-style candombl music. Ogun Beira-Mar. From Amazonia: Cult Music of Northern Brazil.
Lyrichord LLST 7300, B/3.
From a hybrid candombl cult called umbanda that is rapidly spreading through urban areas
of Brazil, the song, addressed to Ogun, is sung in Portuguese to an Iberian melody.
The JVC Video Anthology of World Music and Dance, 28/9 includes a six-minute clip of highlights
from a somewhat hybrid candombl tradition. Notice that drums are played with the hands and there
are eclectic Christian icons on the walls of the candombl house. The excerpt shows both parts of the
performance: first, the invocation to the deities and the dancing of initiates leading to the possibility of
possession; and later, the part where possessed members are taken into another room and dressed in
the costumes of their deities.
Urban popular music
Rumba-guaguanco Cuban genre, performed by a lead singer accompanied by drums and rhythm
sticks. There are two main sections, an initial verse and chorus section followed by a call-andresponse section.
Son Cuban genre with similar two-part format. The ensemble, comprising tres (a small guitar),
piano, bass, trumpets and other wind, and Cuban percussion had international impact in the 1940s and
1950s. Basis of modern salsa style.
Samba Urban Brazilian African-derived genre connected with Carnival. The huge percussion
section, which includes surdo (bass drum), agogo, tamborim (small hand-held drum), pandeiro
(tambourine), reco-reco (metal spring scraper), and cuica (friction drum), plays interlocking parts.
Sung in call-and-response style.
Bossa nova Brazilian guitar-based style maintains syncopated accompaniment patterns of samba
but includes more elaborate harmonic schemes. Understated vocal style and sophisticated texts
appealed to a middle- and upper-class audience.
Cumbia Afro-Colombian-derived genre traditionally played with either a side-blown reed
instrument (pito) or vertical duct flute (gaita). By the 1960s, cumbia was performed by accordions or
urban dance bands throughout Latin America and southern Texas. Characterized by interlocking
rhythmic parts.
Chicha Also known as cumbia andina. An example of the amalgamation of widely disparate
musical resources within an urban popular style and of the use of music to construct and express social
identity by children of Andean migrants to Lima. The ensemble includes electric guitars, bass,
organ/synthesizer, and percussion (guiro and Cuban timbales). Chicha paints a musical portrait of
these children, mixing Andean elements (wayno), urban popular music (cumbia), and Western rock

The Latin American continent encompasses many different types of societies, each
with their own musical traditions.
Mestizo culturesthe mixing of Spanish or Portuguese and Native Latin
American lifewayshave become a common denominator influencing many
forms of Latin American music.
In each country or region, different combinations of European and Native
influences occurred, with one or the other being more or less predominant.
Mestizo music is characterized by European scales and harmonies; strophic song
forms (the melody of each verse is the same, but the words change), and complex
rhythms created by playing duple (2 or 4 beat) and triple (3 beat) rhythms
sequentially and simultaneously.
The guitarin many variantsis the most common stringed instrument, along
with violin, harp, and mandolin. Various types of indigenous flutes, panpipes and
drums are still performed. Brass band instruments were introduced in the 19th
century, accordions in the early 20th century, and electric guitars and keyboards in
the second half of the 20th century.
Native American musical performances tend to be group events, without focusing
on individual musicians. Most musical performances are tied to specific rituals.
Afro-Latin American music is a combination of African, European, and Native
influences. In instrumentation, composition, and performance, Afro-Brazilian
music and performance traditions like the currulao of the Pacific coast of
Colombia exhibit strong influences from African heritage.
Discussion Questions

How might we compare hybrid musical cultures in our country to Latin American?
Why would different types of flutes be prone for use in Peru?
How might we catalogue the guitar variants that developed throughout Latin America from
colonial times?
What examples of sesquialtera might we find in classical music or the popular music of our
In what ways might marimba playing be compared the Shona mbira playing?
Panpipes were prevalent in ancient Greek and Roman societies as they have been in Peru.
What might be the connection, if there is any? Or, are the two traditions unrelated? If so, why
cant they be related?
Why and how did West African religion and music bind with Catholicism in Brazil in the
form of candombl?

Recommended DVDs and Videos

JVC Video Anthology Of World Music & Dance Vol. 28 - Cuba, Mexico, Bolivia, Argentina (Americas
2). English language version in collaboration with Smithsonian/Folkways Recordings, distributed by
Rounder Records (1990) (57 min.).
Music of Latin America. Hollywood Select Video (1994) (21 min.). The documentary covers several
aspects of Latin American music: various instruments, dances, pre-Columbian religious rituals, effect
of Spanish colonization.

The peoples of the Caribbean Islands share a colonial history, the region born in slavery,
indentured laborers, European laws, languages, religions, and economies. Descendants, over the
course of several centuries, became Creoles and Caribbean nationals. Creole experiences are audible
in the regions musical instruments and styles. Combined African and European musical practices,
aesthetics, and instruments combine to become syncretic. Rhythmic concepts such as timelines, clave,
call-and-response, syncopation, interlocking parts, 3+3+2 patterns, are African-derived.

Garinagu also known as Garifuna, a diaspora of people of West African and Amerindian
descent, who settled along the Caribbean coast of Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, and
Nicaragua during the nineteenth century
Punta a song genre that symbolically reenacts the cock-and-hen mating dance and is
usually composed by women. It is performed at festivals, wakes, and ancestor venerations.
It involves call and response singing.
Creole - a person of mixed African and European ancestry, who speaks a Creolized
language, based on French, Spanish, or English, and an African language
Syncretism - the result of a fusion, or reconciliation, of differing cultures, mixing belief
systems, religion, and music, the success of which is the result of the heterogeneity

Rake-n-Scrape Music in the Bahamas
Rake-n-scrape a traditional Bahamian music played on accordion, saw, and goat-skin
Junkanoo an antiquated Bahamian festival banned in the nineteenth century; however, a
source of national identity after independence
Quadrille a 19th century French-derived dance for four or more couples, found in the
Caribbean islands
Calypso and Steelbands in Trinidad
Calypso a traditional French-Creole humorous song that comments on life in the
Tamboo bamboo a percussion ensemble that accompanies calypso songs during
Carnival, consisting of three different instruments, each cut from bamboo
Political issues reflected in song
Steelband an ensemble of steeldrums made from oil drums, tuned to Western pitches
Rumba in Cuba and Other Drum Styles
Rumba an Afro-Cuban music and dance, derived from African sacred traditions (several
Bl a cross-rhythmic drumming style developed in rural Martinique
Bomba a drum style that emerged in the 18th century in Puerto Rico from the slave
Punta of the Garinagu
Garinguaalso known as Garifuna, a diaspora of people of West African and
Amerindian descent, who settled along the Carribean coast of Belize, Guatemala,
Honduras, and Nicaragua during the nineteenth century
Puntaa song genre that symbolically reenacts the cock-and-hen mating dance and is

usually composed by women. It is performed at festivals, wakes, and ancestor

venerations. It involves call and response singing.
Indo-Trinidadian Chutney-Soca
Chutney a folk music of South Asian origin, usually sung by women for women at
Soca a West Indian style of music, a blend of soul and calypso
Chutney-soca a hybrid music in Trinidad, derived from South Asian chutney and soca
Merengue in the Dominican Republic
Merengue a Dominican dance music in 4/4 meter developed from danza and
Travel and Tourism
Globalization a double-edged process that brings outside influence (usually pertaining to
Western) to local regions while bringing regional cultures to other regions of the world
Travel Indigenous peoples travel to other parts of the world bringing the cultures and
globalizing their host culture.
Tourism Tourists travel to regions and take interest in local cultures, helping them
economically through the purchasing and dissemination of their culture products (music,
Religion and Syncretism
Syncretism maintaining elements from two or more traditions combined into a new
practice Orisha any of a number of West African spirits venerated in Caribbean
syncretic religious rites
Gospelypso a hybrid of gospel and calypso musics
Key Concepts for the Unit
Shared Colonial Experiences:
filtered through local circumstances, negotiated in particular contexts, entered into at different
historical moments, interpreted in diverse ways
the resultant process of mixing African and European peoples, cultures, and languages, via
colonialism, creating the Creole cultures of the Caribbean
Syncretism and Hybrid:
the process of mixing cultural elements and creating a new, and resultant, product (the hybrid)
Musical Reception:
Under colonialism, local Caribbean musics was for the slave and underprivileged class,
scorned by the ruling class. Today, the musics are received openly in a global market,
especially reggae.
Creole, hybrid forms that emerged under colonialism are today symbols of national identity
Class and Cultural Politics:
During the colonial era, the government and its elites feared and banned musical forms that
roused the masses. In the 20th century, singers, especially calypso singers in Trinidad and
reggae singers in Jamaica, use their vocal genres to criticize government policies and

Tourism and Travel:
Caribbean music has become globalized. Caribbean immigrants bring their music where they
go, 98
while tourists to the Caribbean purchase the cultural products and disseminate them.
Listening Skills
Musical Syncretism, Creole Music
As an exercise, students should listen to various examples of Caribbean musics and write into
two lists, African and European instruments and concepts. Students may notice that the
syncretism has taken a whole new Creole sound, but the instruments and elements can be
recognized as either African or European.
Chapter Section Summaries
Rake-n-Scrape Festival in the Bahamas
Junkanoo, an annual Bahamian festival of music and dance, developed in the eighteenth
century and took the form of a night-time festival during which slaves would get together to visit,
celebrate, and socialize. After emancipation in 1838, junkanoo came to be associated with loud revelry
and violence (more imagined than real) and was disparaged. Musically, junkanoo became associated
with a particular rhythm, performed on goat-skin drums and accompanied by whistles, cowbells, and
whatever instruments the people could get (trumpets, trombones, etc.). Junkanoo was limited
throughout the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, but as tourists began to frequent the Bahamas
following World War II, junkanoo made resurgence. In the years leading to independence in 1973,
junkanoo became a measure of Bahamian identity.
The Rake-n-Scrape festival descended from the antiquated junkanoo festival. Rake-n-scrape
is a traditional Bahamian music, usually played on accordion, saw, and goat-skin drum. The accordion
most commonly is a two-row button accordion such as the Hohner; the saw is literally a carpenters
saw; and the goat-skin drum is African derived. Rake-n-scrape ensembles traditionally accompanied
quadrille dancing and are an example of Creole musical style. It is based on a combination of
European and African instruments (accordion and goat-skin drum) and on a successful combination of
European and African conceptions (quadrille dancing and the rhythms played on the drum).
Listening Example
Times Table, by Ophie and the Websites. Textbook CD 3, track 9.
This rendition of Times Table illustrates the characteristics of rake-n-scrape. The accordion
begins and is immediately accompanied by strong foot stomping that marks the quarter note
throughout the piece. The saw and goat-skin drum enter in the third measure of the first phrase, with
the rhythm played on the saw consists of a series of successive sixteenth notes with an accent placed
on the third sixteenth note of each beat. This accent pattern thus emphasizes the and of each beat
(one AND two AND, in 2/4 meter). The saw player bends and releases the saw in order to get
different timbral effects, giving the impression of changing the pitch.
Saw Pattern
Alternate Saw Pattern








Calypso is a traditional French Creole humorous song that comments on life in the Caribbean.
The word cariso was used to describe a French Creole song in the 1780s, and in Trinidad, the (mostly
female) chantwells performed cariso during the first half of the nineteenth century. The chantwells,
assisted by drums and alternating in call-and-response, were a central component of the practice called
kalenda (stick-fighting). Kalenda bands (organized by neighborhood) would square off with each
other, first through song and then, more often than not, through stick-fighting. Kalenda was a central
component of early carnival celebrations in Trinidad, even after emancipation in 1834. In 1883,
drumming was banned in an attempt to clean it up. This injunction came after a disturbance in the
1881 carnival, known as the Canboulay Riots. Canboulays were processions during carnival that
commemorated the harvesting of burnt cane fields during slavery. It was a labor intensive process,
involving forced marches of slaves from neighboring plantations in order to more efficiently harvest
the cane. The governments attempt to ban the processions in 1881 resulted in open riots between
Afro-Creole revelers and police, a turn of events that, not surprisingly, caused deep resentment within
Trinidadian society toward the governments use of power. The open resistance of Afro-Creole
revelers, of course, redoubled concerns among government officials over this potential threat to public
order and led to an alternative strategythe banning of drummingin 1883. Stick-fighting itself
was banned in 1884.
A substitute for the drums and sticks, called tamboo bamboo, was introduced in the 1890s. A
tamboo bamboo band is a percussion band used to accompany calypso songs during Carnival time.
Tamboo bamboo bands consist of three different instruments, each cut from bamboo: boom, foul, and
cutter. The boom serves as the bass instrument, is usually about five feet long, and is played by
stamping it on the ground. The foul, which is a higher-pitched instrument, consists of two pieces of
bamboo, each about a foot long, and is played by striking these pieces end to end. The cutter, which is
the highest- pitched instrument in the ensemble, is made from a thinner piece of bamboo (of varying
length) and is struck with a stick. These three types of instruments combined to beat out rhythms that
accompanied the chantwells and were a staple of carnival celebrations for many years (they were
gradually rendered obsolete by the steelband).
By the early twentieth century, calypsonians began to perform in tents, leaving the streets to
the tamboo bamboo, and in the 1920s, they began charging admission to their shows. The 1930s saw
contests between tents become a standard part of carnival and, in 1939, Growling Tiger was crowned
the first calypso monarch of Trinidad (for his song, entitled The Labor Situation in Trinidad).
Calypsonians came to be considered dangerous by the government because they could sway public
opinion with their songs. By the end of WWII, calypso ensembles became reminiscent of jazz
combos, and a typical calypso ensemble came to include a horn section, drums, percussion, bass,
guitar, and keyboard.
Listening Example
No, Doctor No, by The Mighty Sparrow (Slinger Francisco). Textbook CD3, track 10.
The ensemble includes a horn line, upright bass, guitar, and percussion and reflects the
modern calypso sound. Sparrows lyrics engage with a political issue current in 1957 revolving
around the (recently elected) governments failure to come through on campaign promises. The
verse-chorus structure, the call-and-response interplay during the chorus, the secondary importance of
the music in relationship to the lyrics, and the aggressive tone of the lyrical content are all
characteristic of calypso.
Steeldrums were first made from the oil drums left by the U.S. military after WWII. The
steeldrum, or pan, gradually replaced the tamboo bamboo ensemble. By the 1950s, steelbands gained

popularity in England and the United States. The steeldrums are tuned to play a range of pitches.
The lower the pitch, the more area is needed on the surface of the drum, meaning that bass instruments
have fewer notes on a given instrument than do melody instruments. Today, several different sizes of
instruments are used and they have names like tenor, double second, cello, and bass (generally, the
bigger the instrument [the more metal], the lower its register). These instruments fill roles not unlike
those found in a Western orchestra. The tenor pans generally play the melodies (like violins), the
seconds handle harmonies and countermelodies (like violas), the cellos fill in harmonic materials (like
cellos), and the bass pans, of which there are several different types, play the bass lines (like the
double bass). Arrangers fulfill multiple roles, adapting a given calypso or song to the steelband,
assisting in the process of teaching the parts to the steelband, and, once the arrangement has been
learned, helping the steelband to polish the overall presentation for performance.
Rumba developed during the second half of the nineteenth century as a secular alternative to
sacred African-derived drumming traditions in Cuba. The ensemble generally consists of a lead
vocalist, a chorus, and at least three types of percussion instruments (clave, palitos [short sticks], and
three congas). Several types of rumba developed, with three becoming widely popular: the
guaguanc, the yamb, and the columbia. The most paradigmatic style for Cuban dance band music
was the guaguanc, and the characteristic rhythms of this style consist of the interlocking patterns
created by the two-three clave, the palitos, the basic patterns of the congas, and the improvised play of
the quinto conga.





Rumba consists of two main sections: canto (narrative text) and montuno (call and response
with the chorus/percussion). Once the montuno starts, a male and female dance a ritualized enactment
of male conquest. The male dancer uses surprise, stealth, and grace to get close enough to the female
dancer to thrust his pelvis at her in a move called a vacunao. She in turn evades his moves,
improvising her own dance moves in the process. Rumba was banned or severely limited on several
occasions throughout the late nineteenth century.
Bl drumming (also called belair) developed in rural Martinique and is played on a drum of
the same name. The drum is played by two performers: one straddles the drum, playing on the drumhead with both hands and a foot (which is used to dampen and un-dampen the drum-head in order to
produce different pitches); the other performer uses a pair of sticks (called tibwa) to beat out
characteristic and intricate cross-rhythms on the side of the drum. Bl is accompanied by call-andresponse singing and by dancing. Cinquillo also provided serious inspiration first for biguine and then
for zouk (two Antillean popular musics). Cinquillo came to be a central and defining feature of the
light-classical Cuban salon music called danzn, is prevalent in popular genres like Haitian meringue,
and even makes its way into other popular musics like calypso.
Rim shots on snare
drum (3+3+2)
Kick drum





Bomba is a Puerto Rican tradition that emerged out of the slave barracks, probably during the
middle decades of the eighteenth century. The bomba was traditionally danced on special days: to
mark the end of harvesting, for birthdays, christenings, and weddings. Bomba is a generic name that,
like bl, encompasses a wide range of rhythms and sub-types. The bomba ensemble generally
includes dancers, a first drummer (requinto), a second drummer (sonador), sometimes a third drum
(called bomba), cu (sticks), maracas, singer, and chorus (coro). The dance is essentially a challenge
pitting the virtuosity of the dancers against the skill and speed of the lead drummer. Two levels of
call-and-response happen in bomba dancing: between the lead singer and the coro, and between the
lead drummer and the dancers.
The 20th Century Rumba
The habanera rhythm (from the contradanza) and the cinquillo were very popular both within
Cuba and abroad. By 1920, a tango craze hit Europe. People turned to larte negre for a variety of
reasons, both aesthetic and philosophical, and the stage was set for a new dance craze to hit the streets.
A few Cuban entertainers who had been performing rumba in cleaned up, staged form in Havana,
found their way to Paris, where, in 1927, they performed with great success. By the 1930s, this
cleaned-up, commercial rumba was being danced all over Europe and in the United States. A new
genre called son gradually became the international face of Cuba. The clave and the two-part formal
structure of canto (called largo in sones) and montuno, to name but two aspects of traditional rumba,
came to be central to the sound of son and sones.
The Garinagu People
Punta and Punta Rock
Garinagu is the name of the people of West African and Amerindian descent who settled
along the Caribbean coast of Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua during the nineteenth
century. Garifuna is another, more common name for this people. The beginnings of the Garifuna
trace to the island of St. Vincent, one of the few places in the Caribbean where Amerindians were able
to successfully resist the colonial encounter well into the seventeenth century. On St. Vincent, the
Amerindians met and intermarried with two shiploads of Africans who had swum to shore after their
slave ships wrecked in a storm on the way to Barbados around 1635. The Garifuna, known in St.
Vincent as the Black Caribs, eventually found themselves at war with and technologically outmatched
by the British, who had become increasingly interested in St. Vincent during the course of the
eighteenth century. The Garifuna, led by a chief named Chatuye, were eventually defeated in 1796
a defeat that prompted a massive (and forced) Garifuna migration with eventual resting points in
places like Guatemala and Nicaragua. This migration began with the exile in 1797 of some 2,000
Garifuna to Roatan Island off the coast of Honduras. The dispersal of the Garifuna from St. Vincent
has led many to refer to the Garifuna Nation throughout the diaspora. In 1802, Garifuna from
Honduras began settling in Belize (then British Honduras), and on November 19, 1832 many of the
exiles from Roatan Island joined the Garifuna who had already settled there, a day that, since 1977,
has been recognized as Garifuna Settlement Day.
Punta is a song genre that symbolically reenacts the cock-and-hen mating dance and is usually
composed by women. Punta is performed during festivals, at wakes, and at celebrations that follow
dugu ceremonies (religious ceremonies during which a family appeals to the ancestors for help in
solving a given problem). Punta usually involves call and response singing, drums, rattles, and
sometimes conch shell trumpets. The drums used in punta are called the primero and the segunda.
Punta Rock is a popular music style developed by the Garifuna peoples from punta.
Listening Example
Rumba Guaguanco: Consuelate Como Yo

Formal and rhythmic structure

Two sections
Narrative (canto)
Montuno (call and response section with chorus/percussion)
Interlocking foundation
Clave, palitos, conga
Improvisation over the texture
Quinto (lead) conga
Listening Example
Punta, performed by Henry, Bobsy, and Lena Nez. Textbook CD 3, track 11.
This song is performed by two children, ages 6 and 8, who are singing and playing the two
drums, the primero and the segunda.
Indo-Trinidadian Forms
Chutney and Chutney-Soca
Chutney and tan-singing are understood as authentically Indo-Trinidadian forms of
expression. Chutney is a folk music of South Asian origin, usually sung by women for women at
celebrations such as weddings. Chutney-soca blends aspects of both soca and chutney in order to
produce a hybrid, drawing on both Afro-Creole and East Indian musical styles. Tan-singing is a lightclassical tradition and features several different genres, the most important of which is Thumri.
Thumri is, for many East Indians, a tangible link to South Asian musical practices. Thumri is a vocal
genre accompanied by dholak (drum), dhantal (metal clapper), and harmonium.
The Dominican Republic
Merengue is a popular dance music of the Dominican Republic. During the mid-nineteenth century,
merengue developed out of the salon-type music popular throughout the region at the time (danza and
contradanza). The rural merengue was denounced as primitive by those the elite. The early merengue
ensemble usually included guira, guitar/quatro, marimba (like the marmbula), and tambora (a double
headed drum), and, by 1870, the button accordion took the place of the string instruments. By the
1920s merengue tpico of Cibao Valley had become somewhat standardized and could even include a
saxophone playing melodies and counter-melodies alongside the accordion. Merengue is in 4/4 meter,
and the one, two, three, four of each measure is pounded out by the kick drum and by the bass guitar
(in contemporary ensembles). The structure of these songs is similar to Cuban rumba/son in that there
is a narrative section (called merengue) followed by a call-and-response section (called jaleo).
Listening Example
Merengue Tipico: Consangracion De Carina
Accordian, saxophone, bass, guira, tambora, congas
La India Canela

Textbook CD 3, Track 13

Travel and Tourism

Globalization is a double-edged process that globalizes the local while localizing the global.
Caribbean musics have had a global effect, independent of Caribbean communities living abroad.
Travel and tourism led to new trends of music making, such as salsa in New York, and new cultural
practices (various carnivals) in places outside of the Caribbean where Caribbean nationals make their

homes, such as Brooklyn, New York. Reggae is popular worldwide, and Rumba spread in SubSaharan Africa during the 1950s and 60s, directly related to the dissemination of commercial rumba
and son during the 1930s and 40s in Europe and North America. The recent rise to popularity of
reggaeton is interesting because it is a contemporary re-working of the habanera rhythm.
Religious syncretism is the result of traveling religious practices. Elements from two or more
religious traditions are combined into new practices, usually stemming from Baptists, Anglicans, or
Catholics. African-derived drumming is a major component of the ceremonial music central to
syncretic religious systems such as Cuban santera, Trinidadian shango, and Haitian vodoun, all of
which have found ways of combining African deities and cosmologies with Catholic saints and
doctrines. In santera, the drums are called bat, and there are three main instruments in a bat
ensemble: the iy (largest drum), ittele (mid-sized drum), and oknkolo (smallest drum). The drums
are considered sacred, and important rules and rituals circumscribe their construction, care, and use.
Only initiated drummers may touch these drums, and the drums are imbued with a spiritual force,
usually called A, upon their initiation. The drums are played without the improvisational elements
present in genres such as rumba, bl, and bomba. Instead, each drum plays more-or-less set rhythms
that are associated with individual orisha and that also correspond to patterns and inflections
particular to Yoruba language. These rhythms provide the foundation that the lead singer builds on in
invoking the particular orishas toward which the bat drums are directed.
Obeah is associated in the Bahamas with folk magic and at times with black magic. The
juxtaposition of Christianity with obeah, in the case by singing gospel music in obeah country, is a
religious and musical syncretism.
Rastafarianism, which developed in the 1930s is particularly interesting in that it managed to
link its theological and social message to the soundtrack of reggae, particularly Bob Marley. The
message and the sound have been split from one another in recent years (especially with the rise of
dancehall in the mid-late 1980s). Niyabinghi drumming, however, continues to be an important
component of Rastafarian religious life. The Niyabinghi ensemble consists of three drumsbass,
funde, and askete (which improvises over the solid rhythms performed on the other two drums)an
ensemble of instruments and an associated set of rhythmic ideas adapted from Jamaican Kumina
rituals and from Burru drumming.
Styles like gospelypso (calypso) and gospel dancehall are recent. These musical traditions
often illustrate the complex ways in which church communities are utilizing regional and transnational
styles both for their local purposes and in order to participate in globalized forms of Christianity
Tassa drumming accompanies the Hosay festival in Trinidad. Hosay is a Shia Muslim festival
commemorating and celebrating the martyrdom of Muharram (The Prophet Muhammads grandson).
Ensembles include two primary kinds of drumslead and second drumsand hand cymbals, but
the number of players can vary greatly. Significantly, the Hosay festival has, in Trinidad, become a
site of potential inter-ethnic and inter-religious participation. Hindu East Indians also contribute to the
range of sacred musics circulating in the Caribbean.
The Caribbean Islands share a colonial history, each negotiated and interpreted
according to their individual circumstances. All shared the creolization process,
creating unique cultures.
Creolization was the process of mixing African and European peoples, cultures,
and languages, via colonialism, creating Creole cultures of the Caribbean.
Syncretism is the result of the fusion of differing cultures, mixing belief systems,
the success of which is the result of the heterogeneity. Musical syncretisms studied

in this unit are Bahamian rake- n-scrape, Trinidadian calypso, Cuban rumba,
Garifuna punta, Indo-Trinidadian chutney-soca, and Dominican merengue.
Each Creole music today has become a measure and symbol of Caribbean national
Caribbean music has become globalized. Caribbean immigrants bring their music
where they go, while tourists to the Caribbean purchase the cultural products and
disseminate them.
Christianity and African religions syncretized in the Caribbean and brought about
new forms of music and reinterpretations of traditional musics
Discussion Questions


With which globalized forms of Caribbean music are the students most familiar, and how
have they had access to them?
Can we think of any other music and cultural syncretisms than those found in the Caribbean?
Where are they? What were their influencing cultures? Students should learn to understand
rock music and jazz as hybrids of African and European cultures, as well as understand
Chinas songs for the Masses as hybrids and Confucian music in Japan as well.
Ethnomusicological analysis may be applied to any music, opening a broader base for
understanding the music.
Do we regard any form of music as a symbol of our national identity as Caribbean nationals
What is your music (addressing the class)?
What forms of political protest music exist in cultures outside of the Caribbean, especially in
The United States, China, Africa, or Latin America?

Recommended DVDs and Videos

Routes of Rhythm, directed by Howard Dratch and Gene Rosow, narrated by Harry Belafonte (1984)
(3 hours). A three-part survey of African and European roots of Afro-Cuban music and salsa.
Calypso Music History: One Hand Don't Clap, directed by Kavery Dutta, (1991) (1hr. 32 min.). A
documentary tracing the history and present state of calypso and soca.
Roots Rock Reggae - Inside the Jamaican Music Scene, directed by Jeremy Mare, starring Bob Marley
and Jimmy Cliff (1977) (60 minutes). A street-level look at reggae culture, featuring vintage
performances by some of the genre's leading artists and personal interviews and studio scenes. The
filmmakers travel from Jamaica's Trenchtown ghetto to the serene hills of Kingston, where followers
of Rastafari drum and sing hymns. Rasta forms the base of reggae music, which developed from
elements of American rock and blues and Creole musical styles.
Rara, filmed and directed by Verna Gillis (1978) (15 minutes). Rara is a form of festival music in
Haiti, used for street processions. The music uses a set of bamboo trumpets called vaksin (which may
also be made of metal pipes), but also features drums, maracas, scraper, and metal bells, as well as
metal trumpets that are made from recycled coffee cans. The vaksins perform in hocket and strike their
instruments rhythmically with a stick while blowing into them. Rara is an Afro-Catholic syncretism,
and the songs celebrate Hati's African ancestry and vodou. Performances begin on Ash Wednesday
and culminate Easter Weekend. Rara performances are often performed while marching and are
accompanied by twirlers employing metal batons.

Compared to many parts of the world, Native American music is fairly homogeneous. Closely
tied to religion, it is mainly monophonic, vocal, and often has vocables instead of text. Vocal styles
generally sound tense and use pulsations on long notes. There are few instruments; those that exist are
largely percussiondrums and rattles in particular. Flutes, the only important melodic instruments,
are often associated with courting rituals. Song forms usually belong to one of three main types:
strophic songs, short songs with a pair of lines repeated many times, or two alternating contrastive
sections of music, one higher than the other.
Modern Ceremony
Blackfoot Native American Reservations in Browning, Montana and neighboring Alberta,
Drum names indicate location or family name. Drums sing songs.
Vocables sung meaningless syllables, the sound of which serves like a melodic
Intertribal songs or dances based on the Plains styles with which traditions of various
other cultures combined, developed for performances at modern powwows
Powwow - Tribal or intertribal gathering in twentieth-century Native American culture, a
principal venue for performance of traditional and modernized music and dance.
Gambling song - a traditional gambling game, played by two teams facing each other and
hiding a bullet or stick. The team hiding the object sings constantly, songs with a small
melodic range consisting of the alternation of only two brief musical phrases, all the while
beating rhythmically and rapidly on a plank.
Older Ceremonial Traditions
The concept of song in most Native American cultures is a relatively short unit, rather
like a nursery rhyme or hymn.
Songs are ordinarily presented, however, in large groups and sequences as parts of
elaborate ceremonies and rituals.
In many ceremonies, the songs to be performed and their order are specifically prescribed.
In others they are not; in the Peyote ceremonies of Plains tribes, each singer must sing four
songs at a time, but they may be any songs from the Peyote repertory, and only at four
points in the ceremony must particular songs be sung.
The Night Chant (Yeibechai) of the Navajo, a curing ceremony, requires nine days and
nights, and includes hundreds of songs and their poetic texts. The Hako, a Pawnee
ceremony of general religious significance, required several days and included about one
hundred songs.
The medicine-bundle ceremonies of the Northern Plains peoples might consist of several
parts: narration of the myth explaining the origin of the bundle; opening the bundle and
performing with each of the objects in it; a required activity (dancing, smoking, eating,
praying); and the singing of one or several songs (usually by the celebrant, sometimes by
him and others present) for each object.
The Blackfoot Sun Dance, the largest and most central of the older tribal ceremonies of this
culture, required four preparatory days followed by four days of dancing.
The Peyote ceremony, which became a major religious ritual in many tribes of the United
States in the course of the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries, consists of a night of
singing. Each participant there may be from ten to thirty sitting in a circlesings four

songs at a time, playing the rattle while his neighbor accompanies him on a special drum.
Native American Vultures and Music
Each tribe had its own musical culture, repertory, musical style, uses of, and ideas about
music. - There were between one and two thousand tribal groups in North America, almost
all speaking distinct languages. The average population of a tribe was around a thousand,
but some were much larger and others had only one hundred to two hundred persons.
Each tribe, however, had a large number of songs and used them in many ceremonies, for
curing, to accompany dances, and to draw boundaries between subdivisions of society such
as age groups, clans, and genders.
Unity and Diversity in Native American Music
Native American music is almost always monophonic, and with few exceptions it is vocal.
While there are a number of distinct singing styles, they have in common a tense sound and
the use of pulsations on longer notes.
Two or three types of forms predominate. There are strophic songs, rather like folk songs
or hymns in that a stanza of several lines is repeated several or many times; there are very
short songs that consist of one or a pair of lines repeated many times; and there are forms in
which two contrasting sections of music, one usually higher than the other, alternate.
Almost all of the singing is accompanied by percussion, usually drums or rattles. Thus, the
many Native American musical cultures have a good deal in common.
Music area a group of Native American tribes who share similar musical styles, roughly
corresponding to the cultural areas (but not by language)
Ideas about Music
Oral tradition places limitations on the complexity of materials to be remembered.
More complexity at a microscopic level than the listener may at first perceive
The idea of technical complexity has never been a criterion of musical quality to Native
American peoples. Rather, music is measured by such things as: its ability to integrate
society and to represent it to the outside, its ability to integrate ceremonial and social
events, and its supernatural power.
Composition and Creativity
A man has visions in which powerful guardian spirits appear to him, and these are validated
by the songs they sing to him. Many songs have no words, so not simply the texts but the
act of singingproducing a kind of sound that has no other function in life
embodies spiritual power.
Specialists in making up songs are usually also experts in religious matters, and their
technical competence or aesthetic creativity seems not to be an issue.
Musical Instruments
Native American music is prevailingly vocal.
Almost all instruments are percussive, and their function is to provide rhythmic
accompaniment to singing. Solo drumming is actually rare.
Varieties of drum and rattle types
Double-headed drums
Small hand drums with single skin
Water drum kettle-drum filled with water for tuning
Pieces of rawhide suspended from stakes
Container rattles made of gourd, sewn hide, or turtle shell
Strings of deer hooves
Native America flute vertical flute made of cedar, walnut, birch, and other woods,
played solo for courting. Flutes play songs, but in the southwestern United States there is a

separate flute repertory not markedly different from the songs.

Apache fiddle Bowed instrument with one string, probably made in imitation of the
Western violin, used by Navajo and Apache peoples

Aspects of History
There is little direct or written information about the history of American Native American
music, and archaeological evidence is absent north of Mexico.
Native Americans have been in the Americas for at least fifty thousand years, but they
originally came, probably in waves, from Asia.
Music is a reflection of cultural categories.
Music is a way of communicating within and with the supernatural world.
Since the coming of White people, Native American history is better documented and
aspects of it widely studied.
Key Concepts for the Unit
Musical Areas:
Localized Native American (American Indian) music is classified by stylistic features
characterizing geographical areas. The culture area concept, developed and used by American
anthropologists in the early 20th century, was first and most successfully applied to the
mapping of Native American cultures. Anthropologists found that although there were 1,000
to 2,000 tribal groups, each with its own culture and language, they could be grouped into six
to eight major culture areas distinguished by types of housing, religion, political structure, etc.
Scholars of Native American music found that musical style areas coincided generally with
these culture areas.
Music and the Supernatural:
Music has supernatural powers in many Native American traditions. Among the Blackfeet,
supernatural powers reside in songs and are activated when songs are sung. Songs are not
composed but given to humans by guardian spirits in dreams or visions. They are thought
to exist in the cosmos. Once they come into worldly existence, songs are associated with
particular activities: for example, each object in a medicine bundle has its appropriate song. A
person who owns many songs is spiritually powerful.
Music as a Reflection of Culture:
Music is measured by its ability to integrate society, ceremonies, and social events. Technical
complexity is not a valid criterion. For the Blackfeet, the right way to do something is to
sing the right song with it. Every activity has its appropriate song.
Using Music to Construct Pre-History:
There is virtually no written information about the history of Native American music (at least
until about a century ago) and little archaeological information. Songs (e.g., gambling songs)
consisting of short tunes with few pitches repeated or varied many times may be a remnant of
a highly archaic stratum of human music.
Intertribal Styles:
Older intertribal styles include the Ghost Dance and Peyote cult. In recent years, the highly
distinctive (and stereotypically Indian) Plains musical style has been adopted by tribes all
over the country. This applies to costume, too. New ceremonies (e.g., North American Indian
Days), based on traditional midsummer religious ceremonies, are becoming more important
as symbols of Pan-Indian identity.
Listening Skills

Sensitivity to Vocal Styles:

Does a vocal style sound tense/relaxed? Raspy/smooth? Nasal/round? Is the range
wide/narrow? Is the contour of the melody descending? Undulating? Rising? Does it sound as
though there is a text or just vocables (meaningless syllables)?
Recognizing One or Two Musical Forms:
Plains-style incomplete repetition form is probably the easiest to spot. Also try the
California- Yuman-style rise.
Distinguishing One or Two Music Areas:
Use the Plains style as a familiar base, explore contrasting styles such as California-Yuman,
Eastern Woodlands, or Athabascan.
Chapter Section Summaries
Typical Native American instruments
Native American music is largely vocal. Instruments, when they occur, are mostly percussive
and serve to accompany the singing. There is a great variety of drums (large double-headed drums,
small frame drums, water-filled kettledrums, etc.) and rattles (gourd rattles, hide rattles, deer hooves,
turtle shells, etc.). The most common melody-producing instrument is the flute; in some tribes, flute
music is associated with courting. The musical bow (similar or identical to the hunting bow) found in
some southwestern areas seems to have been replaced by the Apache fiddle or Navajo violin, a
bowed instrument with one horsehair string and a cylindrical body, perhaps created as a combination
of the musical bow and the Western violin.
Musical areas
Bruno Nettl identifies eight different musical areas:
Plains: Now the basis of the intertribal powwow style. Singing style emphasizes high pitch,
rhythmic pulsations on long tones, and a tense vocal style. The song form is incomplete
repetition, which typically follows a descending melodic contour (AA BCD BCD, where D
is often an octave lower than A).
Example: Blackfoot War or Grass Dance Song
Eastern: Employs a more relaxed vocal style, with some call-and-response patterns (and
occasional polyphony). Typical forms consist of several short phrases.
Example: Creek Stomp Dance Song
California-Yuman: Characterized by a very relaxed vocal style and a song form in which one
section, a phrase or short group of phrases, is repeated several times but interrupted
irregularly by another, slightly higher contrasting section, called the rise.
Example: Walapai Funeral Song
Athabascan: Includes Navajo and Apache peoples. Typical traits include a wide vocal range,
a rather nasal vocal style, and even rhythms that can be transcribed using quarter or eighth
Example: Navajo Pole Dance Song
Pueblo: Shares features with Athabascan and Plains styles, but has a low, harsh, pulsating

vocal style and long, complex forms

Papago: Related to Plains and Pueblo styles
Example: Papago First Chelkona Dance.
Great Basin: Found in Nevada, Utah, and northern California and characterized by a small
range and a typical form in which phrases are repeated in pairs (e.g., AA BB CC, etc.)
Example: Pawnee Ghost Dance Song.
Northwest Coast: Also includes some Inuit peoples. Distinguished by complex rhythms,
a large number of wind instruments, and a polyphonic choral tradition.
Listening Examples
Plains style: Blackfoot War or Grass Dance song, performed at North American Indian Days,
Browning, Montana, 1966, sung by Heart Butte Singers (7 men), recorded by Bruno Nettl Textbook
CD 3, track 12.
An example of incomplete repetition form. The singers set up a steady rhythm by beating
on the edge of their bass drum. Then, the drums leader sings a phrase in a falsetto voice, very tense,
harsh, loud, and ornamented; the phrase is repeated by a second singer, and the whole group enters,
singing a stately melody moving down the scale until it flattens out an octave below the beginning,
then rising again, coming to the end of the song, and going on to repeat the whole form several times.
Note that the first two stanzas are sung and drummed softly, and then tempo, intensity, and loudness
increase rapidly. The song has no words, only vocables or meaningless syllables, but all of the singers
sing these in unison. The overall form of the song could be represented as A A B B, with B longer
than A. B ends with a variation of A, an octave lower.

Fades into the first stanza of the song, with singers drumming on the side of the
First stanza ends
A1 (lead singer)
A2 (lead singer joined by second singer)
B (the entire group sings)
B repeated (note hard beats or honor beats at 1:12)
A new stanza begins, with A1 (lead singer)
A2. Singer begin drumming on skin at 1:35
B repeated (note speeding up of tempo)
Another stanza begins: A1
B repeated
A new stanza begins, fadeout

Eastern style: Creek Stomp Dance Song, song leader, John Mulley, Textbook CD 3, track 13.
Stomp Dance Song is really a series of songs to accompany a line dance, sung by the
dancers. The dance leader is the song leader, and the form is responsorial, that is, the leader sings a
short call or phrase, and the group responds by simply repeating what the leader has sung (A), or
something to complete his phrase (B). This call and response is repeated a number of times, until a
high-pitched call ends the song and a new one begins. Ordinarily the first song consists of call on one

tone, the second expands the range, and others provide a slightly more complex melody. The singers
accompany themselves with rattles. In form, melody, and rhythm the songs tend to become
increasingly complex. The singers draw on a stock of traditional musical motifs whose content,
variations, and order they improvise.




0:13 Song no. 1

Duple meter






A (with


0:47 Song no. 2

Triple meter
(beats: solo 1, 2;
group, 3)

E (with many

1:07 Song no. 3

Five-beat meter
(Beats: solo, 1, 2,
3; group, 4, 5)

1:32 Song no. 4

Complex and
varying meter
Sometimes solo
has 8 beats, and
group, 5.

I (much variation)

Mostly on one
Triadic tune (like
Higher Note
triadic melody
throughout. Note
the arc-shaped
melodic contour,
as the pitch
gradually rises in
the middle of the
song and then
Both F and G
have more
melodies than
Song no. 2. Note
the pentatonic
bits of melody.
Melodic material
more elaborate;
scales pentatonic,
range over an

begins to be
2:10 End of
Lummi (Washington State) Stick Game Song, sung by Joe Washington and family. Textbook CD 3,
track 14.
The following example shows a group of Blackfoot men singing while playing a stick game,

hiding a stick for the other team to find.


A theme sung in parallel 4ths; regular drum beat

Voices drop in volume to sing drone like tone; drum to fore
A repeated, one step lower
Voices drop to drone-like note; drum to fore
Dropped vocal, drum
A (step lower)
Dropped vocal, drum
Dropped vocal, drum
A (step lower)
Dropped vocal, drum; track fades out

Intertribal styles
In recent times, several intertribal styles have developed. Some, such as the Peyote style, mix
elements from a several different areas to create a new, distinctive genre. Others, such as the
intertribal powwow style, have adopted one particular style (Plains) for use in a new context.
Ghost Dance songs:
The Ghost Dance was a messianic cult that began in the Great Basin and was adopted by
Plains tribes. The song style, derived from the Great Basin style used in Utah and Nevada, is
characterized by a small range and a typical paired-phrase form (AA BB CC, etc.).
Peyote songs:
Used in many tribes to accompany Peyote cult ceremonies. Ordinarily sung solo, the vocal
style is relaxed (Navajo), the rhythmic structure uses two note values (Apache), and the
typical form is incomplete repetition, with descending contours (Plains). There is a special
set of vocables combined in words such as heyowanene, heyowitsinayo, kayatinayo. All
songs end with four long notes and the syllables he ne yo we (possibly southern Plains). A
water drum and a special rattle (possibly southeastern) provide accompaniment.
Based on Plains style, the modern successor of midsummer religious ceremonies symbolizes
broad Indian identity to both Indian and White audiences.
Listening Example
The modern music history of Native Americans may be said to begin after the great tragedy
of the massacre at Wounded Knee in 1890, which resulted in part because Sioux and Arapaho people
had taken up the practice of the Ghost Dance religion. This messianic cult began in the Great Basin
area (Utah and Nevada) and was taken up by the Plains tribes, who hoped that it would help them in
combating and defeating the white people, bringing back the dead, and restoring the buffalo. As these
Plains people learned the Ghost Dance ceremony, they learned its songs, which were composed in a
simple style that also made them think of a simpler, better time. But these songs and their style also
enriched Plains music. A Ghost Dance song in the style of Great Basin music sung by a Plains Pawnee
singer, this following examples form is typical of Ghost Dance songs and consists of a few short
phrases, each of them repeated once: AABBCC. This style of music, taken up by many tribesthus,
an intertribal stylewas superimposed on the older song traditions.

Pawnee Ghost Dance Song: The Yellow Star, sung by Wicita Blain, c. 1919, recorded by Frances
Densmore. Textbook CD 3, track 15.
Frances Densmore was among the first to record Native American performers on an early
machine that used wax cylinders. For this reason, the sound quality on this selection is muffled.
Regardless, it is a chance to hear a Native American performer before the influence of 20th century
mass media had as great an impact as it would over the coming decades. Note that each melodic
phrase is quite short; for example, 2 repetitions of the A phrase take only about 6 seconds to

A, 2x
B, 2x
C, 2x
A, 2x
B, 2x
A, 2x
B, 2x
C, 2x
A, 2x
B, 2x
C, 2x

Peyote music
Peyote songs are based on the hallucinogenic buttons of a cactus native to Mexico, the Peyote
religion spread through much of the North Native American world between 1700 and 1940. Peyote
religionists developed a distinct song repertory; you can easily recognize a Peyote song regardless of
the singers tribal identity. Their singing style is probably derived from that of the Navajo, the
rhythmic structure uses elements of Apache rhythm, the incomplete repetition type of form and the
descending melodic contour come from the musical practices of the Plains, and the percussion
accompaniment is a water drum.
You can identify a Peyote song by its wordsor rather, meaningless vocables or syllables
sequences. Christian texts in English are occasionally used.
Listening Example
Kiowa Peyote Song: Opening Prayer Song and Sunrise Song, performed by David Apekam. Textbook
CD 3, tracks 16 & 17.
Two examples illustrate the intertribal Peyote style, but both are sung by a Kiowa singer. The
first, using the syllables he-ne-ne-ne-ha-yo-wi-tsi-na-yo, has a structure in which a line is repeated,
then replaced by another, and finally a last one followed by the closing formula he-ne-yo-we.
The second track uses a different and more common composition technique; a line of
syllables (and an associated rhythmic pattern) is repeated, but each time with a slightly different set of
pitches, moving down the scale: he-yo-wa-ne-ne, ka-ya-ti-ni-ka-ya-ti-na-yo. It presents two stanzas of
the song; in the first, the initial phrase is sung only once, while the second gives it twice as is normal.
Possibly that was a result of the singers not having the song totally in mind when he began. Its
worth mentioning that singers of songs with stanzas or which are repeated in oral traditions throughout
the world sometimes begin with a deviation from the norm into which they finally settle. The syllables
are a guide to the rhythm; shorter notes/syllables are combined with hyphens.


Drum begins
Introductory vocal: he ne he ne he ne ne ne
A1 (Vocables: he ne ne ne ha-yo-wi-tsi na yo)
A1 (Vocables: he ne ne ne ha-yo-wi-tsi na yo)
B (na ha-yo-wi-tsi na hi-yo no ha wa)
C (ha hi-yo wa ne)
X (standard closing formula: ha-yo-wi-tsi na he ne yo we)
A2 (second main section begins: ha he ne ne ha-yo-wi-tsi na yo)
D (hi-ya-ha-yo-wi-tsi na yo)
C (ha hi-yo-wa-ne)
X (ha-yo-wi-tsi na he ne you we)
Second stanza begins
A2 (Second main section)
Third stanza begins
A2 (Second main section)
Fourth stanza begins
A2 (Second main section)
Drum speeds up for closing

Powwow Culture
The powwow is an intertribal event that builds culture consciousness and sense of ethnic
identity. It developed in the later half of the twentieth century and is based on Plains music. A part of
the powwow repertory is the body of so-called 49er-songs, which may contain romantically hilarious
words in English.
Listening Example
Two Modern Powwow Love Songs, recorded by Willard Rhodes. Textbook CD 3, track 18.
Both of these songs alternate nonsense syllable verses with English language words. They are
composed in a simple strophic format, AABC (first excerpt) or AABB1 (second excerpt), typical
European song forms as well.
First song
Repeat verse 1 and 2
Second song
Repeat verses 1 and 2
Popular music

First song, first verse: Nonsense Syllables

2nd verse
When the Dance is over, sweetheart
I will take you home in my one-eyed Ford
B/C: Nonsense syllables
First Verse: Nonsense Syllables: AABB1
Second verse
My sweetheart, hey-a-hey-a
she got mad at me because I said hello to my oldtimer
but its just OK with me, oh-wey-a-hey . . . hey-a

Indian rock music: Combines the use of traditional tunes, the percussive sound of Native
American songs, and texts derived from or referring to Native American culture. Key
performers: Jim Pepper (1960s and 1970s), Buffy Saint-Marie, Peter La Farge (1980s).
Native American flute music: Although the flute has played a minimal role in Native
American culture, the music of Navajo flutist R. Carlos Nakai has become extremely popular
on the mass market (especially the New Age mass market).
Native American songs tend to be very short, but sung in large groups for specific
The voice is the primary instrument, with drums, rattles, scrappers, and flutes the
most widespread instruments.
The singing style usually features a tense, pulsating voice.
There are seven music areas that have common musical cultures.
In traditional Native American culture, music serves as a mediator between man
and the supernatural world.
Individual skill is not valued as highly as group participation in performance.
Since the coming of White people, new formssuch as the Ghost Dance and
Peyote Songhave developed.
Today, Western pop influencesincluding rock and raphave led to a new
type of intertribal popular music.
Discussion Questions
1. Since a musical system is a reflection of the rest of the culture, how is it so in Native
American cultures?
2. Since a musical system is a reflection of the rest of the culture, how is it so in African
3. Since a musical system is a reflection of the rest of the culture, how is it so in Asian
4. Since a musical system is a reflection of the rest of the culture, how is it so in
American popular culture?
5. How are powwows perceived as the lasting of Native of American cultures on one
hand, while perceived as a reflection of vanished cultures on the other?
6. Will powwows ever be enough to totally bring back older Native American cultures,
and how is this an adaptation to the outside social environment?
Recommended DVDs and Videos
Powwow Trail, DVD collection produced by Jeremy Torrie, Arbor Records, Ltd. (2004-2006) (60
min. each).
Episode 1, The Drum
Episode 2, The Songs
Episode 3, The Dances
Episode 4, The Grand Entry
Episode 5, Grass Dance and Mens Traditional
Episode 6, Fancy Dance - Men and Women's Fancy Shawl
Episode 7, Powwow Rock
Episode 8, The Women

Chapter 12
Music of Ethnic North America
The writer of Chapter 12, Byron Dueck, described an assignment that he gave to his
university students. He asked them to make a list of songs that they know. When the results were
tallied, two groups emerged. There were a small number of class members who were singers, music
students, or future teachers who were involved with music and singing who could think of a number
of familiar songs. The rest of the class had little or no recollection of specific songs that they could
sing. Then, Dr. Dueck asked the larger group if they knew Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star or the
National Anthem. Many responded, yes. His point is that in North America, we conceptualize of
music in a number of ways, but often overlook the day-to-day use of music. You may want to
introduce this chapter with a similar experience. Ask students to help you make a list of the
incidences within the last 24 hours when they have encountered musical information. Have they been
to church? Did they hear music while they were preparing to come to class? Have they heard
children singing or chanting on the playground? What about seasonal or holiday music? How does
this list relate to the title of the chapter?
Music, Ethnicity, and Politics in Public Performance
Diversity in Canada
Queens 2002 visit
Audiences at public concerts
Mosaic of ethnic groups
Languages, official and indigenous
Musics of ethnic groups
Protesters at second concert
Led by Manitoba drum group
Northern plains style songs
Welcomed Queen
Official concert
Handel: Fireworks Music
Royal Winnipeg Ballet
Unity, Diversity, and Difference in North American Music
Musics importance
Symbolic representation
Mostly immigrants and descendants
Indigenous population, minority
Continual arrivals from the world
Music/dance often originated in other lands
Creative fusion, exchange
North Americas longstanding encounters between
Indigenous people
Established immigrant populations

New arrivals
Festivals include music (diverse)
Musical ethnic performances
Expression of political ideas
Confirmation of unity
Revelation of political divisions and tensions
Advance alternative social and political visions
Demonstration of governments limited representation of population
Themes in North American Music
Helps organize and enrich social life
Makes differences audible and visible
Shapes experiences
How groups maintain distinct traditions while borrowing from others
African-American music
How conceptualized? Three questions:
1. Groups distinct, yet sharing similarities, how?
2. How professional and non-specializing musicians interact daily and for
special events?
3. What do musical acts accomplish?
Actualization of symbolic concepts
Integration of participants
Collective activity
Production of actual differences in real time
Soundly Organized Time
Holiday season
Distinctive music
Much composed in 1930s & 40s
Tin Pan Alley style
AABB (32 bar) form
Examples: carols/hymns
Reference to Jesus birth
Church services
Handels Messiah, Tchaikovskys Nutcracker
Christian music, ubiquitous, also diverse
Christian calendars differ
e.g. many do not observe Christmas
Music shapes experience of passing time.
Culturally specific
Rhythmic/metrical practices
North American structures of temporal organizations
Ethnic identity associated
Liturgical cycles
Most evident cycles, annual
Heightened speech
Sacred time, weekly organization

Sacred texts
Office sets of daily worship services
Chants at fixed times
Islamic call to prayer-5 times a day
Church bells in steeples
Shapes organization of the year
Advent 4 Sundays preceding Christmas
Ordinary time
All associated with music
Jewish and Islamic groups
Years passing marked by ritual
High Holy Days
Rosh Hashanah-New Years
Yom Kippur-Day of Atonement
Month of Ramadan
Text recitation
Calendar marked with music
Weekdays-morning and evening music
Accompanying commentary (radio programs, e.g.)
Weekdays-marked with dance music
Sounds function to shape social division of time.
Temporal cycles and religious structures
Coordinated with music
North America-great variety
Larger trends, e.g. Christmas carols, Christian significance
Music and Age Categories
Life cycle organized by music
Genres of music and social categories
Age, gender, e.g. childrens music
Miss Sue from Alabama CD III, 22, recorded by Edna
Smith Edet in New York City
Contains fragmentsof childrens lives in NY,
Hints of sibling antagonism
Quotations from pop culture
Playful, musical physicality
Childrens musical games highlighted
Diverse versions of same song exist
Reflects locality
Young people (perhaps young men) and popular genre

Marketed to young girls

Paired adults-couple dancing in late life, ballroom style
Young singles
Likely dance apart
Genres: rock & roll, ecectronic dance music
Music and Rites of Passage
Musics connection to stages of life
To rituals marking rites of passage
Birth rites
Circumcision and baptism
New persons join community
Funerary rites
Wakes, funerals, viewings, memorial services
Mark departure
From childhood to adolescence to adulthood
Educational levels
Wedding ceremonies, 1980s-1990s
Mennonites-protestant, Christian
Adult baptism
Reject worldliness
Musical implications
Instruments may be disallowed
More liberal groups may use instruments
Example: Piano opening, pleasant, not showy or
Harmonically unusual
Processional, e.g. Pachelbels Canon in D
Timing managed at rehearsal, but could
change at wedding
Brides entrance, special music of her
Congregational singing, perhaps
Solo song by friend or relative
Recessional-grand, joyous
Music function at wedding
Demonstrated taste of bridal couple and families
Reinforced grandness and consequentiality of event
Music, not main focus, except for song/hymn during
Ceremony, often followed by reception
Drinking and dancing, disapproved by Mennonites
Other groups, drinking/dancing could be approved
May have a DJ or full band
By exclusion, Mennonites distinguished themselves
from surrounding communities and North
American mainstream.
Music at wedding example, not generalizable to all of
North America.
Rooted in time and space
1980s & 1990s-weddings only between man and a woman
Now, same sex couple marriages possible

Ritual and musical practice, open

Music for procession/recession could differ
e.g. San Francisco used at ceremony
between two men
North American ethnicity experienced in musical practices
Coincide with life stages
Christian-English-speaking mainstream
Ethnicity sen at solemnity and festivity
Also, everyday punctuating stretches
Musical Particularity and Historical Continuity
Social groups value distinguishing practices
Those coming from homeland
Changed in North American context
Simultaneous adaptability and particularity
Complexities of connection and ownership of musics explored
Anglo-American Ballads
Clarence Ahleys recording of The House of the Carpenter? Textbook CD 3, Track 23
Banjo accompaniment
Song dates back to 17th Century, The Distressed Ship Carpenter
Ballad brought to North America from England by immigrants
(Northern Ireland and Great Britain)
Versions emerged
New England
More popular in North America than place of origin
Ashleys recording indicates a transformation and
e.g. ships carpenter became house carpenter
Banjo accompaniment
African origin
Adopted by whites
Caribbean blacks, late 17th Century
African Americans, mid 18th Century
Whites, first locally, later in context of minstrelsy
American fiddle tunes may suggest influence of African American musical
Tecnobanda, quebradita, and duranguense: other migrating musical styles
1990s & 2000s-Spanish radio stations
related quebradita and pasita duranguense dance craze
Close harmony
Melodic bass fills by
Brass, reed, electronic keyboards, kit drums, tamboron
Dance rhythms

Pitch varies (sharp or flat)

Stands out, compared to intune singing
Thus, the Mexican-American musical ethnicity
Traced to rural Mexican musical traditions
Village bands, North West Mexico
Melodies, wind and brass
Tuba-bass line
Tamboron and snare drum
Newer genre added electric guitar and keyboards
Banda descendents history
Border crossings, South Texas and Northern Mexico
Musical borrowings
Strong German influence: polka, waltz, accordians
Two dances emerged
Pasito curanguense from Chicago, led by Grupo Montez de Durango
Addressed transitional audiences, both sides of border
Immigrants borrow from each other
Stylistic elements
Adapt musical practices
New circumstances
Affects back home
Some old practices continue
Similar circumstances
Strict boundaries
Frequently reflects new context
Hatterites, e.g.
Communal living
Strict guidelines
Dress, comportment, language
Conservative musical tradition
Avoid secular subjects
Yet, borrow sacred songs from other
Particular and General Musical Practices
North America, diverse, mosaic of cultures
Melting Pot
Blends emerge
Musically melting and sustained
Communities differentiate themselves via music
Appalachian music, e.g.
British songs
African American instrument
North American fiddle traditions
Cape Breton, Canada
Fiddles accompanied by pianists
Unique syncopated style

Strathspey-dance tune of Scotland

Duple meter
Melodic embellishments
Borrowed from bagpipe tunes
Rhythmic clogging patterns (feet) as they play
Upper South (U.S.)
Syncopated bowing
Generalized musical structures in fiddle tunes
AABB dance form
Harmony patterns
Tonic, dominant, subdominant
Evident in Rocky Road to Jordan
Lamb, fiddler and accordionist
Part Danish decent
Repertory shaped by family connections
Also, the mass media
Diverse array of fiddle/dance tunes
Form and harmony (AABB, I, IV, V, I)
Rocky Road to Jordon
Textbook CD 3, Track 24
Two sections, alternate
A lower range
B higher register
A & B repeated
Synchronized with underlying pulse
16 beats per section
Duple meter
32 bar AABB form
Forms, freely treated
Guitar-harmony, listen for chord changes
Harmony, complex study in North America
Key points
Fundamental opposition
Tonic and dominant
Interrupted I, IV, V, I
Sense of musical closure (I, V, I)
Formal harmonic structures
Enables memory of musicians
Following well known structures makes group playing possible
Without printed music
Others also use it
Musica nortena
Wider harmonic palettes
Broader ranges of chords

Modal patterns
Musicians, apt to transform or elaborate common practices
The African American Contribution to North American Music
Characteristic component, especially the U.S.
African Americans significant contribution
Marginalized in society
Unprecedented influence on rest of world
Rhythm and Blues
Rock & Roll
Electronic dance music
Other American musics show influence
American Art Music
Responsible factors
Music-Central force in African American groups
African American music, long-time central element in
American musical life.
Object of fascination
Expressing Collective Experience and Resistance
Africans brought to America via slave trade
Brought music traditions
Louder instruments, wind and percussion
Slave owners regarded with suspicion
Quieter fiddle and banjo emerged as more important
Musical structure- key to African retentions
Sub-Saharan music elements in African American music
Cyclical forms
Interlocking parts
Dense timbres
Musical divisions, core and elaboration
Also include European structures, but
from African-American aesthetic
Collective expressions of slave life
Work songs
Sacred music
For socializing and dancing
Musics expressed
Protest of slavery
Hopes for better life
Means of resistence

Afro-American music-complex relationship of exchange
Black fiddlers accompanied both black and white dances
Anglo-Celtic tunes
Evidence of whites borrowing African American music and dance
White Americans fascination
Object of ambivalent fascination
Loved the music
Refused respect for the people
Minstrelsy-mid 19th Century
Whites-blackened their faces
Played and sang in African American style
Grotesque caricatures
Successful as popular culture
Suggested that black music was becoming central to white expressive
African American Music: From Emancipation to Today
From 1965, continued to offer
Collective expression
Fascination for non-blacks
Technology enabled spread to new audiences
Example: Sacred, Precious Lord, Take My Hand
Small church, met in cabin room
Singing, accompanied by bas drum, tambourine,
Lyrics project absolute despondency, plea for divine
Blacks adopted Christianity in 19th Century
Adapted it to suite Afro American sociability and aesthetics
Worship, e.g.
Rhythmic movement
Spontaneous speech, song
Affirming shared heritage, slavery, Christianity
African Americans moved from rural South to urban North, early 20th
1930s-Dynamic Gospel form emerged
Thomas A. Dorsey-key figure
Composed listening example in 1932, following wifes death
Sacred songs focus
Lifes difficulties
Uncertain love
Legalized racism
Collective reflection on shared circumstances
Expression of solidarity
Gospel music preserved valued African Americans elements
Musical and religious
Dorseys song, written for improvisation and free elaboration

Melody in listening guide differs from published version.

Building of black American musical public
Dissemination of musical publication
Week to week use, locally
Dorseys song-widely known
Recorded by Mahalia Jackson and Elvis Presley
Secular music
Matchbox Blues by Blind Lemon Jackson
Rural blues style
Emerged in Southern U.S., early 20th Century
Blues drew from
Field hollers
Black ballads
Spread from traveling songsters
Brief introduction
Repeated lyrics and harmonic pattern
Verses-2 rhyming lines
Same harmonic patterns
Basic pattern used in other blues songs, but
Not strictly followed
Words transcribed from listening
Differences possible
Lyrics-similar and in contrast to sacred music
Reflect on unhappiness
Blues open to discuss
Earthly love
Some musicians active in blues and sacred genres
Both important iin black musical public
Genres also captivated non-blacks
Non-black musicians subjects of concern to many North Americans
Social changes
Civil Rights Movement
White North Americans-pointed toward more productive
Engagement with African American musical expressions
Social status o black musicians
Bebop, 1940, e.g.
Intricate improvisation
Fast tempo
Musicianship required facility and flexibility
Influenced development of indeterminacy and
Improvisation in non-black forms
Black musicians denied same rights as white musicians
Powerful argument for equality
Bebop audiences included non-blacks
Often used to train young jazz players
Important part of musical language
Evoked migration of musical works between groups
Jazz- incorporates
African retentions

Collective improvisation
Older Africans traditions
Contributions from
Evident in
Swing rhythms
Classic country
Post-war avant-garde
Typical of emerging styles in new context
North American Musical Concepts
Duecks assignment
List songs students know
2 groups emerge
Singers, music students
Students who claim to know few or none
Addressing specific song titles, different results
Do you know, Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star?
Larger numbers know specific songs
How is music conceptualized in North America?
Something done by professionals, artists
Something encountered-concerts, public sphere
Music learned from
Church members
Comes to mind better than more formalized examples
Printed music
MP3 files
Music for musics sake.
Chapters purpose-to dispel idea
Discuss functional nature of music and use.
Why this concept?
Professionalization extends to musical world.
Purview of artists
Product-oriented North American society
Work of musicians seen as a commodity
Commodification and specialization of music
Financial success is esteemed
Artistic excellence measured
Producers goal-make music with wide appeal
Artists goal-make music that evidences talent, pursues excellence
Art and commerce
Tense relationship
Courting mainstream audience
Compromising artistry and authenticity
Concert halls
Sell tickets
Challenge audiences with new music

Local style repertoire
National style appeal
Win contests
Commercial success
Artistically compromised?
Music pushed on audiences?
Companies lack of artistic interest
Other side argues
Art music, too subtle
Of no value to audience
Fails to communicate
North American values
Refine performance skills
Composing new music
Entering contests
Interpreting challenging compositions
All efforts may yield little financial reward
Musics extension beyond arguments
Democratic, participatory, everyday phenomenon
Compare musics to foods
Fast food chains
Zagat-rated restaurants
People cook at home
Grow gardens
Fish and hunt
Music functions.
Marks passing time
Rites of passage
North American diversity
Art and commerce concepts
Complex and contradictory relationships
Ethnics and local ways of assessing value
North Americans comprise one of the most diverse societies in the world.
Immigrants brought their own musical traditions, including instruments with them
to their new countries. Although a lot of borrowing occurred among ethnic
groups, producing a synthesis, distinct musical traditions were also preserved in
the form of music. This process continues.
Africans were brought to North America and sold in the slave trade. Their
citizenship was marginalized even after emancipation, but their music survived.
There was much borrowing and synthesizing that produced new forms in the
context of a different location. The impact that African Americans music has had
on the world is significant.
Because the societies of North America are product-oriented, commercialization
of the arts is sometimes in conflict with the concept of arts for arts sake. All
genres of music and the performers are subject to the values of the society,
meaning that financial success is considered desirable. Fiddlers, e.g., may want to

enjoy local success, but also incorporate national trends into their performances so
that they will be able to compete for prizes. Composers may be inspired to write
music that is too challenging for concert audiences. Producers encourage
composers to write music that will have a broad appeal.
Music is functional in that it serves an ancillary purpose for many social
occasions: rites of passages, school events, community celebrations, and home
use. The cultural context in which the event occurs helps to define the type of
music that is chosen.
Discussion Questions
1. What conflicting interests were symbolized and realized in the form of music
during the public concerts in Winnipeg, Canada when Queen Elizabeth II visited in 2002?
2. How is it possible for ethnic musics to both delineate social groups and also help synthesize
their expression in new locations?
3. Discuss incidences where immigrating groups coming to North America have borrowed
musical traditions from each other.
4. What conflicting ideas surrounded the development of Bebop?
Key Concepts for the Unit:
1. North American population is extremely diverse.
2. Factors that relate to music diversity include location, background, values, annual religious
calendars, school music, concert rituals, and age.
3. Immigrants shared musical ideas, borrowed from each other for a synthesis that both
preserved old traditions and created new concepts.
4. Unique music is an aspect of culture that can create a real-time boundry.
Recommended DVDs:
American Patchwork-Appalachian Journey, Alan Lomax, 2006, DVD, Media
Beyond Our Differences, Bill Moyers Journal, 2009, DVD, PBS
Lomax the Songhunter, 2008, DVD, Rounder Europe Studio.
We Are the World, 2005, DVD, Stage Entertainment Studio.

Assign activities during the semester to increase the students stake in the course. Such tasks depend
upon the instructor developing a collection of recorded material for the library.
World music can be downloaded at
Listening Assignments: Supplementary required listening assignments, taking the form of 70 or 80minute CDRs (with prepared liner notes), give students the opportunity to hear more music.
Listening Journals: Ask students to spend an hour a week listening to music of their own choice
(but appropriate to the current area) and to keep an individual listening journal in which they record
their reactions to the music, describe and analyze it, and use terms and concepts they learned in
Paper Assignments: Students should be required to write one or two papers during the semester.
Many topics exist for the students to choose from, but they should be integrated with an
ethnomusicological analysis. Students may take ideas they learned in class and apply them in new
and personally meaningful ways. For example:
One of the tenets of this class is that we should consider music as a phenomenon with
three aspects: sound, conception, and behavior. Write a four or five-page essay in
which you use this model as the basis for a description of some type of music you
directly participate in as a performer, consumer, listener, or critic. You do not need to
like the type of music you choose.
Fieldtrips Assign a fieldwork-based project. This could be the study of local musicians or groups.
The students must write a report indicating the music, the performer, the location, the meaning of
the songs, the method of learning the songs, and the performers migrations.
Listening Workgroups: Divide the class into three-person workgroups for the semester. The groups
must meet on a regular basis, and the position of coordinator should be alternated. The coordinator
makes sure that the meeting takes place, selects music for discussion, takes notes on the discussion,
and types up a short report.

World Music - Listening Worksheet, 1

World Area: ______________________

Report due date: _______________________

Coordinator: ______________________

Listening dates:________________________

Sample tracks listened to:



General notes during sampling time:

Titles of 4-5 tracks to discuss as a group:

Final piece for detailed analysis:


Library call number

World Music - Listening Worksheet, 2

Title: ____________________________ Country:___________________________

Album:___________________________ Artist/Ethnologist: ___________________
Kind of music: __________

Library call #: ________

Region/state: _________________

Musical Genre:____________________

Why was this piece chosen?

Instruments used:

Vocal styles:
Technical terms that describe:

Similar to or different from other music of region? How?

What is most intriguing? Difficult to follow?

What would we like to understand better?

Track/side #: _________