What is Authentic Bavarian and Austrian Alpine Folk Music (Echte Volksmusik Alpenlaendische)?

When Americans think of German music, they associate it hears the sounds of the band Polka different Oktoberfests held across the country. What most of them do not know, however, is that the music is just one of the many kinds of German people's voices. I do not know if anybody tried to classify all of them, and I certainly will not attempt here. At the same time I want to introduce and explain a certain kind of Volksmusik which I think is the most authoritative among the regions in Bavaria, Austria and Northern Italy.

The main types Volksmusik

Generally speaking, we can say that there are three main kinds of Volksmusik. Most of the least commercial (and I use the word not a negative connotation at all), they are:

1 – Volkstuemliche Musik. Volkstuemliche Musik is the most similar to what Americans are used to hear. Amusement topics, joyful rhythms (mostly Polkas), some modern instruments like drums, bass guitar, electric keyboard and the repertoire is mainly a family history of tradition. At the highest level, volkstuemliche Musik brings huge crowds of musicians and local real pop star.

2 – Oberkrainer Musik. Oberkrainer Musik comes originally from Slovenia. A typical combined with one or two accordion, clarinet and trumpet playing in harmony, the bass and / or tuba (or bass brass) and a semi-acoustic guitar. Oberkrainer pieces generally cheerful and happy themes, although there are several varieties used in the dance-rhythms. There is a strong emphasis on instrumental virtuosity and often have a rich repertoire borrowing Echte Volksmusik.

3 – Authentic Alpine Volksmusik (Echte Volksmusik Alpenlaendische). This music was played mainly in Bavaria, Austria and Sudtirol (Italy), and its roots back to the late 18th century. The vast majority of the historic repertoire – especially pieces that are passed down through generations unwritten and are therefore subject to regional variations in the music and lyrics. Echte Volksmusik between devices in the Styrian Harmonica (buttonbox accordion), the zither, a classical guitar, harp, double bass; plus clarinet, trumpet, violin, and other lesser-used tools such as Ocarina, a Dorombszövetség and a kind of xylophone called Mountain Hoelzernes Glachter. Rhythm diverse range of topics and is optimistic about the melancholy.

anatomy authentic Volksmusik

Authentic (echte) Volksmusik be a variety of shapes, such as Stubenmusi (mountain lounge music), Saitenmusi (string-band music), duets, trios, quartets, etc. in different makeups from the purely instrumental to a cappella.

If you had to describe the typical Volksmusik piece, I'd do it in the following manner, bearing in mind that this is a generalization, there are many exceptions.

is a big part of the music is based on dance rhythms typical of the area. While Americans typically associate with German music Polkas, perhaps the most popular dances in authentic Volksmusik Landler and Boarischer. The Polka and Walzer (Waltz) is certainly a place of honor, any more than "accent pieces" as the main fare.

Most of the long-term, and the vast majority of eight or sixteen bars pieces to be danced – the (usually), except for a few songs and Yodlers.

to Boarischer

Boarischer one of the bounciest dances of Alpine tradition, and one of the absolute favorite among the locals. The dialect known as Bayrischer (Bavaria), it is a convenient jumping several variations of Polka, that dancing 2/4 time, not by chance As Bayrisch Polka. Austria is also known Bauernpolka or Farmer Polka.

Dating to the mid-19th century, the Boarischer danced in several ways, including offener Boarischer (open Boarischer) and the characters Boarischer (Figure Boarischer).

The Landler

The Landler or Ländler a 3/4 time from the last decades of the 18th century dance. It can be as fast as the classic waltz or as slow as a sweet lullaby, which is the incredible versatility. Along with the Boarischer, this is one of the most popular dances in authentic alpine music.

The Landler also by the kind of dance often Schuhplattlers who take advantage of the slightly slower pace, to illustrate the complexity of the arm and leg work. Similarly, faster Landlers often used by musicians to showcase their technical prowess, as it usually takes several feature-intensive parts such as classical cousin circulating.

The Dots

Pöttyös became standardized as the first half of the 1800s – the name means "the Polish" from no coincidence that in Eastern Europe. This dance is a quick 2/4 time, and for many has become synonymous with the German music – especially music Oktoberfest.

The credibility Volksmusik, the Polka is heard less often than the other 2/4 -time cousin of Boarischer.


Minuet and Waltz of the Deutscher Tanz dance in a 3/4 time, from the 18th century. This is a strong-flowing swing makes it a favorite among dancers, and this was, of course, battle horse of the great Viennese composer Johann Strauss.

The Alpine music is often on hand to circulating Landler second place, although the two can be like dancing.

to Marsch

The Marsch (March), recognizable by its military-like 2/4 or 4/4 rhythm. It is often used as the entry dancers in traditional Alpine music pieces or even Schuhplattling. Although these dance pieces, too many marches lyrics of one or more of the sections – are often some of the most fun and hymn-like tradition.

vocal music

vocal music, this tradition is mainly divided between numbers and Yodlers. Most of the songs are accompanied by instruments, dance rhythms follow one mentioned above, and may or may not include a section yodel-style singing. Topics vary from nostalgic to downright obscene, love or work-ethic of "wink-wink" double meaning.

On the other hand, most Yodlers slowly flowing wordless harmonies sung a cappella, and these voices remind us of the pure Alpine echoes.

The traditional Alpine Volksmusik Instruments

Traditional alpine Volksmusik uses a very well-defined tools. A unique tradition dating back over a hundred years old, so the devices associated with it quite distinctive and timeless. The equipment Volksmusik bands are playing straight into the Alpine tradition and tied to the group's sound is rich and full.

In addition to the traditional instruments played, after a clearly defined technique, which is still grown in conservatories and music -schools the Alpine areas. In other words, what the game is not the only thing that matters is how you play is just as important.

Here is a list of some of the most commonly heard Alpine Volksmusik tools, as well as a brief description of their characteristics.


The zither is a desktop tool for plucked string family, and achieved worldwide fame in the soundtrack to the film The Third Man. It's a fingerboard five strings whose pitch is controlled by the left hand, as well as many unfretted strings tuned in fifths. On the right side you pick up the fretboard strings with a thumb ring, striving for bass accompaniment and the ring, middle and index fingers.

The main difficulty in playing the zither coordination. The right thumb that is completely independent of the other fingers play the melody with feeling and expression, while the other three fingers to find the rhythm of pace and a good bounce.

There are two main tuning Zither: the Bavarian and Vienna.

Steirische Harmonica

Solid alpine instrument, the accordion gets its name from Styria Steiermark (Styria), in the region of Austria that has produced many excellent Volksmusikanten. Three or more rows of buttons on the right hand is played, each producer's notes after a key press in the main Triassic dominant accordion and pulls the seventh (plus a few other notes); and the appropriate number of bass playing in the left hand.

The Styrian just play the right keys on the keyboard are. For example, a Styrian, which is only three lines (for example, G, C, F), just play G, C and F. This is a typically brassy bass called Helicon, which is reminiscent of a Tuba or Posaune, and it makes the Styrian sound is unmistakable.

classical guitar

The classical guitar is one of the most important tools accompanied by an authentic Alpine folk music. The game most of the fingers on the right hand side (no pick), the thumb to play bass and bass-runs, chords and performing other fingers.

Although physically similar to the classic Spanish guitar known almost everywhere, the Alpine requests a special classical guitar playing technique and the perfect feeling for this type of music. A very typical type is a companion "PAH-rooms" pattern, in which the bass is kept very short stopping almost immediately on the palm or the back of the thumb, while the left-hand chord sounds more freely. There are several interesting bass runs, which feature Alpine music and add bounce and enthusiasm to every piece.

The guitar can also be used as a melodic instrument, primarily other guitars and / or harp, zither and similar stringed instruments.

The Hackbrett

hammered dulcimer is a kind of Hackbrett. To use either melodic-harmonic, that is playing together with other instruments; or rhythmic, that plays eight notes, while the other plays a musical instrument has values. It is very common in Stubenmusi Saitenmusi and Alpine breeds Volksmusik and is suitable for indoor wonderfully, unmiked locations.

Schrammel Guitar

The Schrammel guitar is a second regular classical guitar neck is tight unfretted nine additional bass strings are usually tuned to a chromatic during the European Championship in the 6 string guitar down during the G – although alternate tuning is allowed.

This kind of guitar made popular in Vienna at the turn of "Sramli" groups of the last century, where the guitar, accompanied by instruments like the violin and the clarinet. The thumb of the right hand plays the bass, the guitar and the bass range of the regular strings, while the other fingers play the higher notes of the left hand touched the guitar fretboard.

Of course, the Schrammel guitar can be played as a regular classical guitar when asked.

The Harp, bass and other instruments

Few people know that in the modern pedal harp owes at least some roots in the Tyrol, Italy, in the region bordering Austria. In Volksmusik, the harp is used in a very eclectic way – either as a solo instrument or as an accompaniment to other instruments.

The double bass almost ubiquitous in large groups, where the deep notes together in a harmonious basis, and the main rhythmic scansion. It can be played either with a bow or plucking, but either way, the dances played mostrly short, staccato notes. This "room" A "room-PAH 'rhythm, playing mostly alternating root and fifth chord being played on other devices. A common variation of (or in addition to) the bass is a bass tuba in the brass like.

More commonly heard instruments include a clarinet, trumpet and violin, while including the sound sometimes heard is that the ocarina, Jew's harp, the Mountain xylophone (Hoelzernes Glachter) and the funny names, funny-looking Teufelsgeige or devil's violin, rhythmic percussion.

Alpine Volksmusik USA

Alpine Volksmusik not easy to find in the US – at least as competent musicians played well in the tradition. There are a few individuals and / or groups scattered around the country who will be delighted to share their passion for this wonderful musical form for those interested. The players of this music echte Volksmusikanten approach their music and instruments almost classical meticulousness, at any concert you'll see all the joie-de-vivre and zest, that in itself is a big part of this tradition.

The best way to hear what it sounds authentic Volksmusik to visit YouTube and search for "Echte Volksmusik" or names such as Franz Posch.

I hope that this brief article, you are more inclined to learn about and appreciate the wonderful sounds Alpine Volksmusik – which is a breath of fresh mountain air that will make everyone smile every time I played.

Source by Seppel Bellot

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