Music of Vanuatu

Traditional music in Vanuatu was limited to the human voice with rhythmic accompaniment from drums. Slit drums are only used for signaling and demonstrating to tourists. (The remarkable, large, vertical slit gongs which symbolize Vanuatu, and are to be seen in ethnological institutions around the world, were used only for communication.) Europeans introduced musical instruments, the use of which may be increasingly heard in village dances and ceremonies.
The most popular contemporary musical genre in Vanuatu, both rural and urban, is known as string band music; it combines guitars, ukulele, and popular songs.
More recently the music of Vanuatu, as an industry, grew rapidly in the 1990s and several bands have forged a distinctive ni-Vanuatu identity. Popular genres of modern commercial music, which are currently being played in town include zouk music and reggaeton. Reggaeton, a variation of hip-hop rapped in Spanish, played alongside its own distinctive beat, is especially played in the local nightclubs of Vanuatu with, mostly, an audience of Westerners and tourists.

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