Gamelan Jawa

Gamelan is a set of musical instruments with pentatonic melodies, which consists of: Kendang, Bonang, Bonang successor, demung, Saron, Peking (Gamelan), Kenong & Kethuk, Slenthem, Gender, Gong, Gambang, Rebab,, Siter, Flute.The main components of the gamelan music instruments are: bamboo, metal, and wood. Each instrument has its own function in gamelan music show.
Gamelan word itself comes from the Javanese "gamel"which means hitting / beating, followed by the suffix "an" which makes it as a noun. While the term gamelan as a whole has a sense of musical instruments being played together.

There is no clarity about the history of the creation of this instrument. However, the gamelan is estimated at the time of culture was born out of Hinduism - Buddhism dominated Indonesia. Although the development there are differences with the music of India, still there are some features that are not lost, one of which is the way of "singing" the song. Commonly referred to as male singers and female singers wiraswara called waranggana.

According to Javanese mythology, the gamelan was created by Sang Hyang Guru in Saka era. He is a god who controls all the land of Java, with a palace on the mountain Mahendra Medangkamulan areas (now Mount Lawu).
Gamelan musical instruments which first created the "gong", which is used to summon the gods. After that, to convey a special message, Sang Hyang Guru again creating some other equipment such as two gongs, until eventually forming a set of gamelan.

At the time of Majapahit, gamelan musical instruments developed very well to reach today's form and spread in some regions such as Bali, and Sunda (West Java).

The first authentic evidence of the existence of gamelan discovered at the Borobudur Temple, Magelang, Central Java, which stood since the 8th century. In his reliefs seen some equipment such as bamboo flutes, bells, kendhang in various sizes, harp, stringed musical instrument that swiped and picked, including a little picture of the element of metal musical instruments. Subsequent developments, gamelan used to accompany wayang performance and dance. Until finally independent music and equipped with the voice of sinden.

Gamelan expanding in Central Java, slightly different from Balinese gamelan or Sundanese gamelan. Javanese gamelan has a softer tone when compared with the dynamic Balinese gamelan and Sundanese gamelan and dominated by lilting flute sound. According to some studies, the difference is the result of the disclosure toview of of life " Javanese people" in general .

The view in question is: as Java people should always "maintain physical life and spiritual harmony, and harmony in speech and action". Therefore, "Javanese people" always avoid an explosive expression and always trying to create tolerance among fellow. The most obvious manifestation in gamelan music is the pull string fiddle that is, a balanced blend of sound kenong, saron drums and xylophone and gong sounds on every cover of rhythm.

Tuning and making gamelan orchestra is a very complex process. Gamelan tuning using four ways, namely "slendro", "gamelan", "Degung" (special area of Sunda, or West Java), and "madenda" (also known as diatonic), the same as the original minor scale that is widely used in Europe.


   * Slendro has 5 tones per octave, namely: 1 2 3 5 6 [C-D E + GA] with a small interval difference.

     * pelog has 7 tones per octave, namely: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 [C + D E-F # G # AB] with a large interval difference.

Gamelan music compositions created by some rules, which consist of several rounds and pathet, bordered by one gongan and the melody was created within the unit that consists of 4 tones.

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