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INDONESIA • SUMATRA - MUSIC OF THE BATAK

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Karo, Toba and Simalungun

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Among the common characteristics of the Batak who live in the north of the Island of Sumatra, the main ones are adat, social and ceremonial organization of social behavior, and the ancient religious representations which still survive in spite of the influence of both Christianity and Islam. In other respects, however, the Batak people differ so much that a specific cultural identity may be attributed to each group. These differences are particuliarly obvious in their music. The instrumental music is called gondang (Toba), gendang (Karo) or gonrang (Simalungun), meaning ‘drum’. The acoustic conception of this music, intended to be played outdoors, is based on a combination of drums, gongs, and an oboe. In terms of rythmic structure, this music belongs to one of the most complex musical genres of Southest Asia and its power echoes jazz music.

260061

Data sheet

Country
Indonesia
Release year
1995
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