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Monday, 21 October 2013

Korean Traditional Percussion Music Samul nori


Hello friends around the world lets check out some Korean traditional instruments used in the traditional music N its try to go back in time to learn some history of it.

Samul nori 
It  is a genre of traditional percussion music originating in Korea. The word samul means "four objects" and nori means "play"; samul nori is performed with four traditional Korean musical instruments:

1- Kkwaenggwari (a small gong)The kkwaenggwari is a small flat gong used primarily in folk music of Korea. It is made of brass and is played with a hard stick. It produces a distinctively high-pitched, metallic tone that breaks into a cymbal-like crashing timbre when struck forcefully.

2-Jing (a larger gong)
The jing is a large gong used in traditional Korean music, particularly in samul noripungmul, and daechwita. Usually made from brass, it is struck by a hammer that is layered with soft cloth to smoothed the texture of the sound produced. It is typically played at the onset of ceremonies and special occasions. It is struck with a large, padded stick and drops in pitch slightly when struck firmly.


  • Janggu (an hourglass-shaped drum)
    The janggu (or janggo; also spelled changgo) or sometimes called seyogo (slim waist drum) is the most widely used drum used in the traditional music of Korea. It is available in most kinds, and consists of an hourglass-shaped body with two heads made from animal skin. The two heads produce sounds of different pitch and timbre, which when played together are believed to represent the harmony of man and woman.

    Buk (a barrel drum similar to the bass drum)
The buk is a traditional Korean drum. While the term buk is a native Korean word used as a generic term meaning "drum" (the Sino-Korean word being go), it is most often used to refer to a shallow barrel-shaped drum, with a round wooden body that is covered on both ends with animal skin.Buk are categorized as hyeokbu  which are instruments made with leather, and has been used for jeongak (Korean court music) and folk music

Samul nori has its roots in nong-ak (literally "farmers' music"), a Korean folk genre comprising music, acrobatics, folk dance, and rituals, which was traditionally performed in rice farming villages in order to ensure and to celebrate good harvests. Specifically, samul nori music derives from utdari pungmul (the gut, or shaman ceremony rhythm of the Gyeonggi-do and Chungcheong provinces of South Korea), as well as the genres of Yeongnam folk music and Honam udo gut, combined with more contemporary improvisations, elaborations, and compositions.Such nong-ak is steeped in traditional animism and shamanism, but also shows influences from Korean Buddhism. While nong-ak often features the use of wind instruments, Samul nori only features the aforementioned four percussion instruments.The traditional Korean instruments are called pungmul.

Each of the four instruments represents a different weather condition: the janggu represents rain, the kkwaenggwari thunder, the jingthe sounds of the wind, and the buk clouds. The idea of yin and yang is also reflected in these instruments: the buk and janggu(leather) represent the sounds of the earth, while the jing and kkwaenggwari (metal) represent sounds of the heavens. Although generally performed indoors, as a staged genre, samul nori depicts the traditional Korean culture, an agricultural society rooted in the natural environment. Samul nori is characterized by strong, accented rhythms, vibrant body movements, and an energetic spirit.

Samul nori has gained international popularity, with many samul nori bands and camps worldwide. Since the 1980s in South Korea, there has been a marked increase in the amount of fusion music, combining samul nori and Western instruments.Samul nori is also extensively used in the Korean musical ""Nanta"".

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