Gamelan is a musical ensemble that usually highlight metallophone, xylophone, drums, and gongs. The term gamelan refers to the instrument / tool, which constitute an integral whole which is realized and sounded together. Gamelan word itself comes from the Javanese gamel which means hitting / beating, followed by a suffix that makes the noun. Gamelan orchestra mostly found in Java, Madura, Bali, and Lombok in Indonesia in various sizes and shapes ensemble. In Bali and Lombok today, and in Java through the 18th century, the term gong is considered synonymous with gamelan.
Occurrences gamelan preceded by Hindu-Buddhist culture that dominated Indonesia in the early days of recording history, which also represents the original art of Indonesia. Instrument developed to shape up like this in the days of the Majapahit Kingdom. In contrast with Indian music, the only impact of the India-an in gamelan music is how to sing it. In Javanese mythology, the gamelan was created by Sang Hyang Guru in Saka Era, the god who controls all the land of Java, with palaces on the mountain Mahendra in Medangkamulan (now Mount Lawu). Sang Hyang Guru first created gong to summon the gods. For a more specific message and then create two gongs, and eventually formed set of gamelan.
The description of the first ensemble of musical instruments discovered at the Borobudur Temple, Magelang, Central Java, which has stood since the 8th century. Musical instruments such as bamboo flutes, bells, kendhang in various sizes, harp, stringed musical instrument that swiped and learned, is found in the relief. However, little is found elements of metal musical instruments. However, relief of the instrument is said to be the origin of the gamelan.
Gamelan orchestra tuning and making is a complex process. Gamelan tuning using four ways, namely slendro, pelog, "Degung" (special area of Sunda, or West Java), and "madenda" (also known as the diatonic, the same as the original minor scale that is widely used in Europe.
Gamelan music is a combination of foreign artistic influence that diverse. Linkages to note the tone of the Chinese, the musical instruments of Southeast Asia, drum band and move to music from India, bowed strings from the Middle East region, Europe and even the military style that we hear the traditional music of Java and Bali today.