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Performers

Group: Endah Parahyangan
Sinden: Omah
Sinden: Cicih
Bonang: Gantar
Kendang: Jaka
Rebab: Nana
Saron I: Deni
Saron II: Ajat
Kentrung: Saepudin
Kecrek: Ujang
Goong: Aas

Recorded at Aru Studio in Bandung
Java, Indonesia by Electrophoria
(Kai Riedl / Producer, Suny Lyons / Engineer)

Known for its dark lights and late nights, Klub Endah in Bandung, Java, is home to one of the most energetic and psychadelic Jaipongan groups in the city. This sensually calculated music is made to move people on the dance floor and beyond! This is a raw expression of jaipongan. This tight-knit group is the musical counterpart to dark red lights, alcohol-driven nights, and some of the most unique dancing styles found anywhere in Java!

Though Jaipongan music has, over time, become more refined, in the right hands, its sensual aspects are still fully revealed. Although small in numbers, some clubs still have resident groups that build erotically-charged environments using only a few half-broken instruments, reverb drenched vocals, and powerful drumming. This group in particular, infamous in Bandung Java, unleashes nightly. Under the red lights, alcohol flows freely and hired dancers invite customers onto the dance floor and beyond.

Jaipongan developed out of a genre of ritual and celebration music called ketuk-tilu (three kettle gongs) found in West Java. Ketuk-tilu is known for its complex and dynamic drumming, which is intimately coordinated with a sensual solo female dancer. These performances also included a rebab (a small upright bowed instrument), a gong, and, of course, the ketuk-tilu (three kettle gongs). The original performance context of this music revolved around planting and harvesting rituals. Over time, ketuk-tilu became an outlet for village life to express fertility, sensuality, eroticism, and, at times, socially accepted prostitution.

In 1961, President Sukarno placed a ban on Western music — most specifically, rock and roll — in order to revive traditional Indonesian arts (vocally, at least). This constricting policy did have some creative outcomes: for instance, it inspired the composer/choreographer Gugum Gumbira to expand creatively and re-oufit the dynamic and intense ketuk-tilu music into a new genre.

Working with ketuk-tilu as a basis, Gumbira expanded the instrumentation to be played on a full gamelan, modified the accompanying dance to be a combination of some of the original sensual moves and a popular martial art called pencack silat, and recast the singer’s primary role as singer only, thereby creating a new art form.