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World music is a wide general term used to describe a wide variety of musical styles and sounds which originated in countries outside the UK and USA.  This covers practically any form of ethnic variation, many of whose rhythms and instruments have been integrated into modern music.

African rhythms and percussion instruments are popularly used in dance music along with versatile Indian voices.  Similarly western music has influenced eastern styles to create unique flavours that can be heard in songs by the Beatles, Madonna and many other artists.

Most world music was given little attention in the western charts until the 60's.  Since then we have seen a dramatic increase in world music including Latin/American which was made popular by artists like Gloria Estefan and 'Bangra' music which is the fusing of western and asian music in the UK.

The introduction of the internet and satellite television has opened up our access to music from around the world. Many musicians are grabbing this opportunity to create songs that integrate styles and instruments rarely before heard outside their traditional genre.

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World Music Links

  • Hindu Universe
    is a web based directory created by the Hindu Students Council, providing information on different aspects of Hinduism including Arts, Customs, Worship, Books & Resources, Dharma & Philosophy, Hindus Around the World, History, Temples & Organisations, Languages, Interfaith Relations, God, Sages & Gurus, Sciences, Scriptures and Social & Contemporary Issues.

  • Motherland Music USA
    company specializing in importing high quality authentic African Musical Instruments

  • Music India Online
    A comprehensive website on Indian music. The material is organized under the categories: Carnatic, Hindustani, Jugalbandhi, Light Music (Devotional, Folk Music, Ghazals, IndiPop, Qawwali, Patriotic) and Regional (Assamese, Bengali, Gujarathi, Hindi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Malayalam, Marathi, Oriya, Punjabi, Rajasthani, Sindhi, Tamil and Telugu).

  • Music in Latin America
    run by the University of Texas. The material is organized under the categories: Latin American Resources, Regional Resources (Andean, Caribbean, Hispanic/Latino) and Country Resources (Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Haiti, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico, Trinidad & Tobago, Uruguay and Venezuela).

  • Sounds from the Vaults Virtual Instruments
    Enter the vault and click on the images to display musical instrument artifacts, then follow the instructions to play them (uses Shockwave for playing).

  • The Music of Puerto Rico
    An educational resource published by the Music of Puerto Rico Foundation a non-profit organization dedicated to exploring the full breadth and depth of Puerto Rican music.... from the soft rhythm of the Puerto Rican danza, to the traditional folk music and plenas, to hot salsa.

  • World Music Albums, Books & Software at Amazon UK

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