gamelan - http/

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View Full Document Right Arrow Icon oduction History Tanah air, land and water, is an Indonesian expression equivalent to “fatherland”. This is because the many thousand islands of Indonesia, locating in between the continents of Asia and Australia and stretching from northern Sumatra to western New Guinea, spreads across almost 3,400 miles of ocean. This geographical setting brought Indonesia's diversity of its people and cultures. Each of hundreds of ethnic groups and subgroups has its own local characteristic, in language, customs, forms of organization, ritual, dances, music and other cultural expressions. Java is one of the Indonesian islands located in the south-western part of the archipelago, between the islands of Sumatra and Bali. It is the most populated island in Indonesia. Almost one-half of one hundred seventy million Indonesian live in the island about the size of New York state. Besides, Java has a long and rich history, spanning from the era of the oldest human species, the “Java man”, to the period of Hinduization, Islamization and Westernization of the
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island. Significantly, for many centuries Java has been the principal locus both of power and international commerce and communication. Java also has rich musical traditions, traditional as well as westernized genres. One of the forms of well-known traditional music of Java and those of neighboring Bali is gamelan. Gamelan, derives from the word “gamel”, to strike or to handle, is a generic term referring to an ensemble which comprises predominantly of percussive instrument. However, vocal music has important role in the development of gamelan. In the beginning of this century, the term karawitan was introduced, embracing both vocal and instrumental elements in the gamelan. The gamelan has an old and mysterious origin. Apparently it predates the Hindu- Buddhist culture that dominated Indonesia in its earliest records, and instead represents a native art form. The instruments developed into their current form during the Majapahit Empire.
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gamelan - http/

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