other regions of the country, southern Thailand has it own traditional
musical instruments and folk songs.
'tapon', used in the Thai orchestra ('mahori'), is a southern percussion
instrument. The 'tapon' is important in controlling the tempo of
the music being played.
toh' is an unusual instrument made from hollowed-out coconuts, over
which a piece of split bamboo is placed. This is beaten with a thick
stick wrapped in rubber to create the instrument's unusual sound.
'Krue toh' is very popular at Narathiwat in the far south of the
folk songs are very often related to the agrarian way of life of
the people. The singers, very often paired male and female performers,
must be quick witted and able to improvise in songs such as 'pleng
na', and 'pleng bok'.
na' is a local song of Chumphon originating from the days when it
was played in rice fields during the harvest season as a courtship
ritual. Today it is performed on occasions such as the Thai New
Year, ordinations, house-warmings, weddings and even funerals.
bok', literally 'herald song', is indigenous to Southern Thailand,
particularly around Chumphon, Surat Thani, Nakhon Si Thammarat,
Trang and Songkhla. It is usually performed at Songkran to tell
the people that a new year is here, or to relate a story. Groups
of singers, each usually consisting of a main singer and four to
six others, do the rounds at dusk to bring news to the people using
the local dialect.
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