HOME    WHATS NEXT    2003 SHOW    PRESS    LIBRARY    SPONSORS    CONTACT US

 



FOLK MUSIC OF BENGAL

S Sowmya

Folk traditions are the indices of the culture of any community or country. . Folk culture includes a vast range of art forms such as folk music, dance, literature, tales, proverbs and theatre. The unique feature of folk arts, as opposed to classical arts, is that it involved a more casual approach, in the sense that it wasn't performed for professional considerations. The emphasis was on the feeling of belonging in the community, unity and enjoyment. The music and dance were more instinctive than technical because they came from the heart than from the mind.

Folk songs, in general, can be lyrical and subjective. They, however, do not convey the psychological intricacies of the sophisticated elite. Nevertheless, they reveal the feelings and sentiments of the common people, their deprivation and struggles, anguish and bitterness, torments and anger in a simple and straightforward manner. The stanzaic form of a folk song is usually four to six lines. The first part moves in a refrain and the musical pattern of a folk song generally consists of verse repetition. This often maintains the pattern of tri-, tetra- and pentatonic scales.

The folk literature and music of Bengal consist mainly of songs. There is a lot of discussion and material on folk-literature, but the music is generally spoken less of. Excepting a few tunes in Bengal folk music, most of the other items are monotonous. Tunes are generally limited to the notes of half an octave, sometimes pentatonic or else confined to two to four notes only.

The impact of various religious thoughts produced folk cult of different types. The Vaishnava cult including keertan, has influenced many folk songs. There is also a remarkable influence of Sakta music, Ram prasadi, Agamani, etc. Islamic faith has also produced quite a member of songs in the villages of East Bengal. Baul is a special musical type which is a mixture of Vaishnavism and Sufism. The two Bengals (East and West) are regions where folk music composition had multi forms, the ideas and patterns of tunes being mostly distributed and exchanged at different levels.

 
 

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8

 
HOME    WHATS NEXT    2003 SHOW    PRESS    LIBRARY    SPONSORS    CONTACT US