Posts Tagged ‘ Sundanese culture ’

Jamming with karinding(s)

Photo from su.wikipedia.org

Karinding Jam at Taman Budaya Jawa Barat, 11/2/2012
1 min 46 sec / 2.42 MB / 192kbps MP3

I was at a wayang golek performance of a story from the Ramayana epic at Taman Budaya Jawa Barat that never finished because of the rain. Stuck inside because of the heavy rain, I had a look around the souvenir “shop” and found these little wooden things which I found out are a Sundanese musical instrument called karinding.

A karinding is a type of jaw harp made out of bamboo. It’s similar to a traditional Hmong instrument used in Vietnam called Đàn môi and many other jaw harps found all over the world. However, I’m not sure how many other jaw harps there are in the world that are made from bamboo or any other wood.

So anyway, while we were all hanging around, trying to keep dry from the rain that just kept on falling, some of the guys who were hanging around had a jam using karinding to demonstrate how it’s played and what it sounds like. I can’t remember how many people were playing, I think at least four.

Also, if you want to hear a better recording of people doing really awesome stuff with karinding you should check out Karinding Attack.

Wayang Golek at Taman Budaya Jawa Barat, Bandung

Wayang Golek at Taman Budaya Jawa Barat
9 min 56 sec / 13.6 MB / 192kbps MP3

Here’s a recording from a wayang golek show I saw while in Bandung. Basically, wayang golek are wooden puppets and the show is accompanied by gamelan music. This show was a contemporary version of wayang golek – instead of just one puppeteer there were about forty and there were even breakdancers dressed as monkeys.

From what I could figure out, the show was based on the Ramayana epic. Shinta (Sita) was kidnapped by Rahwana (Ravana) in the beginning and then there was some mad fighting between lots of monkeys and the bad guys. I couldn’t really follow the story because I can’t understand Sundanese and I’m not very familiar with the storyline of the Ramayana. However, I don know the meaning of the word geulis (beautiful), so I could figure out that Rahwana justified his kidnapping of Shinta by saying he couldn’t hep himself, she’s too geulis. I guess the “she’s asking for it” excuse has been around since ancient times. I wonder if women in Lanka or Ayodhya ever had their own Slut Walk.

Unfortunately, it started raining during the show and it had to end short. So I don’t know what happens in the end. Not that I was relaly aware of what was happening in the start or the middle. But the gamelan was awesome, the puppets were cool, the monkeys were cute and the breakdancing monkeys was best gila.