All About Gamelan Music

All About Gamelan Music – Gamelan is one of traditional musical ensemble from Indonesia.  It is typically from Bali or Java island.  In gamelan music there are variety of music instruments such as metallophones, xylophones, drums and gongs; bamboo flutes, bowed, plucked strings and there are a vocalist too. In this article we will write All About Gamelan Music that we found the source from internet.

All About Gamelan Music

All About Gamelan Music

Word of Gamelan is comes from Javanese word that is gamels, its meaning to strike or hammer.  Gamelan also integral part of all cutural activities in Java such as for wayang kulit (leather puppets) performance, uyon-uyon (symphony orchestra performance), court dance, etc. In this music there are two kinds of laras (tuning), Slendro (comparable to minor key in Western Music) and Pelog (major key).  in All About Gamelan Music, They are the non percussion and/or non-bronze musical instruments used to accompany a wayang purwa performance.

If you see Gamelan music ensemble, there are a lot of sets of music istrument.  In Gamelan there is consist of two sets of different instruments, Slendro and Pelog.  Instrument of gamelan music in All About Gamelan Music  , such as :

  • Kendang (double ended drum beaten by hands)

It is a leading instrument. The pengendang (drumer) is the conductor of the gamelan orchestra. There are five (5)  different sizes of kendang from 20 cm to 45 cm.

  • Saron

A glockenspiel with bronze bar struck with wooden mallet. There are three kinds; Saron Barung, Saron Peking, Saron Demung.


Picture of Saron

  • Bonang Barung

A double row of bronze kettles resting on a horizontal frame, played with two long stick bound with red cord at the striking end.

  • Bonang Penerus

Picture of Bonang Penerus

  • Slentem

Thin bronze bars suspended over bamboo resonating chambers, struck with a padded disc on the end of a stick.

  • Gender

Similar to slentem with more bronze keys and smaller bamboo chamber, struck with two disc-shaped hammers.

 Picture of Gender

  • Gambang

Wooden bars laid over a wooden frame struck with two sticks of supple buffalo horn, ending with a small, round, padded disc.

  • Gong

Each slendro and pelog set had three gongs. Two big gongs (Gong Ageng) and one gong Suwukan about 90 cm, made from bronze, suspended on a wooden frame. It marks the end of the largest phrase of the melody.

 Picture of Gong

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