- Pleng Korat
Pleng Korat, a form of folk tradition of the Thai Korat, is considered an alternate song between male and female that requires a great deal of singers' ability, knowledge, resourcefulness as well as wisdom. Its unique words and rhythm reflect very distinctly the culture of the Thai Korat. In this thesis, the researcher bases his study of Pleng Korat on the theoretical framework of Ethnomusicology in which forms, contents and procedures of both lyrics and rhythm are analyzed. The objective of the study is to observe the development of Pleng Korat from the past up to the present with the focus on ‘original' Pleng Korat which has become less and less popular these days. From the study, it was found that Pleng Korat has undergone some development and that its forms, contents and procedures have changed considerably. While singers' creativity as well as listeners' taste constitute one reason, the other reason results from socio-cultural changes within the Thai Korat community. More varieties of Pleng Korat are created to accommodate the needs of the community. Pleng Korat Kae Bon, which is sung to fulfil one's vow or to make a votive offering, and Pleng Korat Sing, a mixture of typical Pleng Korat and modern folk, are two examples of well-known new-age Pleng Korat currently being performed. Regardless of the changes, Pleng Korat still preserves its distinguished lyrical and rhythmic characteristics, especially the Korat verse and “O” rhythm. However, whether Pleng Korat continues to be popular or not depends greatly on each singer's knowledge as well as the particular artist's own techniques of singing.
"The music of Thailand reflects its geographic position at the intersection of China, India, Indonesia and Cambodia, and reflects trade routes that have historically included Persia, Africa, Greece and Rome. Thai musical instruments are varied and reflect ancient influence from far afield - including the klong thap and khim (Persian origin), the jakhe (Indian origin), the klong jin (Chinese origin), and the klong kaek (Indonesian origin).
Though Thailand was never colonized by Western powers, pop music and other forms of European and American music have become extremely influential. The two most popular styles of traditional Thai music are luk thung and mor lam; the latter in particular has close affinities with the Music of Laos.
Aside from the Thai, ethnic minorities such as the Lao, Lawa, Hmong, Akha, Khmer, Lisu, Karen and Lahu peoples have retained traditional musical forms
Traditional Thai classical repertoire is anonymous, handed down through an oral tradition of performance in which the names of composers (if, indeed, pieces were historically created by single authors) are not known. However, since the beginning of the modern Bangkok period, composers' names have been known and, since around the turn of the century, many major composers have recorded their works in notation. Musicians, however, imagine these compositions and notations as generic forms which are realized in full in idiosyncratic variations and improvisations in the context of performance. While the composer Luang Pradit Phairau (1881–1954) used localized forms of cipher (number) notation, other composers such as Montri Tramote (1908–1995) used standard western staff notation. Several members of the Thai royal family have been deeply involved in composition, including King Prajatipok (Rama VII, 1883–1941) and King Bhumibol Adulyadej (1927–), whose compositions have been more often for jazz bands than classical Thai ensembles.
Classical Thai music is heterophonic - the instruments either play the melody or mark the form. There are no harmony instruments. Instrumentalists improvise idiomatically around the central melody. Rhythmically and metrically Thai music is steady in tempo, regular in pulse, divisive, in simple duple meter, without swing, with little syncopation (p.3, 39), and with the emphasis on the final beat of a measure or group of pulses and phrase (p.41), as opposed to the first as in European-influenced music. The Thai scale includes seven tempered notes, instead of a mixture of tones and semitones.