Certainly, talking about Angklung cannot be separated from the area of ​​West Java. This multitonal or double-pitched instrument is indeed developing in Sundanese society. In the past Sundanese tradition, the Angklung instrument actually had a religious ritual function – to invite Nyai Sri Pohaci or Dewi Sri (Goddess of rice, symbol of prosperity) to come down to earth and provide fertility to rice. In addition, it is said that Angklung is also a musical instrument that was played as a spirit booster in warfare, as told in Kidung Sunda (the Sundanese Song).

Angklung is a traditional West Java musical instrument made of bamboo pieces. This instrument consists of 2 to 4 bamboo tubes which are strung together with rattan straps. The bamboo tube is carved in detail and cut in such a way as to produce a certain tone when the bamboo frame is shaken.

The word angklung comes from Sundanese, that is, angkleung-angkleungan. Angklung consists of two syllables namely angka that mean tone and lung which means broken. So, the name Angklung refers to a broken or incomplete tone. This instrument is made of bamboo which is sounded by shaking it. The sound is produced by the impact of the bamboo pipe body so as to produce a sound that vibrates in the arrangement of tones 2, 3, to 4 tones in each size, both large and small.

Along with the development of Angklung, since November 2010, UNESCO has designated Angklung as the Great Work of Oral and Nonmaterial Human Heritage. One place that still preserves Angklung culture is Saung Udjo. In this studio, which is located in the city of Bandung, visitors can not only see various types of Angklung, but also learn the process of making Angklung.

Angklung Dogdog Lojor is often used in lojor dogdog art found in the Kasepuhan Pancer Pangawinan community or the Banten Kidul traditional unity scattered around Mount Halimun. The term Dogdog Lojor itself is actually taken from the name of one of the instruments in this tradition, namely Dogdog Lojor. Angklung has a function in its tradition, which is as an accompaniment to farming rites. After the people there embraced Islam, in its development, the art was also used to accompany circumcision and marriage. In the Dogjog Lojor art, there are 2 Dogjog Lojor instruments and 4 large Angklung instruments.

Angklung Kanekes is Angklung played by the Kanekes (Baduy) community, in the Banten area. The Angklung tradition that exists in the Kanekes community is fairly ancient, and remains preserved as the function exemplified by their ancestors, namely accompanying the rite of farming (rice), not solely for the entertainment of the people. Angklung is used or sounded when they plant rice in the huma (fields).

In the Kanekes community, Baduy people are divided into two groups, namely Baduy Luar and Baduy Jero. The only people who are entitled to make Angklung are the Baduy Jero residents, but not all of them, only those who are descended from the makers of Angklung. Meanwhile, Baduy Luar residents do not make Angklung. They only buy it from Baduy Jero residents. The names of the Angklung in Kanekes from the largest to the smallest ones are: indung, ringkung, dongdong, gunjing, engklok, indung leutik, torolok, dan roel.

Angklung Gubrag is located in Cipining village, Cigudeg sub-district, Bogor. This Angklung is old and is used to honor the goddess of rice in the activities of melak pare (planting rice), ngunjal pare (transporting rice), and ngadiukeun (placing) into the leuit (granary). In the mythology, Angklung Gubrag began when a village in Cipining experienced a famine disaster. This is related to the myth of Dewi Sri who was reluctant to give rain.

Angklung Padaeng was introduced by Daeng Soetigna around 1938. Angklung Padaeng innovation is found in the tuning of the diatonic tuning in accordance with the western music system. In line with music theory, Angklung Padaeng is specifically divided into two groups, namely: Angklung Melodi and Angklung Akompanimen. Angklung Melody is specifically composed of two sound tubes with 1 octave tone difference. In one Angklung unit, there are generally 31 small melody Angklung and 11 large melody angklung.

Meanwhile, Angklung Akompanimen is Angklung which is used as accompaniment to play harmony tones. The voice tube consists of 3 to 4, according to the diatonic chord. After Daeng Soetigna’s innovation, other innovations to Angklung continued to develop. Some of them are: Angklung Sarinande, Arumba, Angklung Toel, and Angklung Sri Murni.

Angklung musical instrument has its own uniqueness because it is simple, natural, easy to learn and play and can produce melodious orchestration. Angklung can be played individually or together. On various occasions, Angklung is also quite effective as a medium to build local, national or even international relations.

Surabaya, 24 January 2020