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Traditional / folk music of BULGARIA


Bulgaria is a country with rich and varied type of folk music. Music has a deep roots in Bulgaria even in mythologies. Orpheus, the Greek hero born in south part of Bulgaria. Based on mythologies, he could charm wild beasts and leads rocks into movement with his musical power. 

After World War II, from 1954 Bulgaria was a communist country under the rule of Todor Zhivkov. He repressed many kind of music which was not approved by the state (but not all), specially those who had “Bulgarian” origins. But folk music of Bulgaria survived in the blood of Bulgarian and did not die.

Traditional and folk music in Bulgaria is related to Balkan music with some roots in Turkish and Gypsy music. It has similarity with its neighbors, Greek, Romania and Macedonia. Bulgarian rhythms are famous for their complication in measures like 5/16, 7/16, 11/16, etc. This amazing measures in the music of Bulgaria and also Balkan built up around various combinations of 'quick' and 'slow' beats. 

Different type of dances from different regions are played important role in folk music and traditions of Bulgaria. Many of these dances are line dances, in which the dancers dance in a straight or curved line, holding hands. Hora or horo is a popular dance which has many different shape. For example in a wedding more than five types of horo maybe performed. They are different in the rhythm of the music and the steps taken. There are no two horo dances with similar steps. Each has different sequence of rhythms and steps. Some types which can be named are pravo horo (which is considered as national dance of Bulgaria), petrunino horo (common in in north-west of Bulgaria which is example of 13/16 meter dance), shopsko horo (men’s dance often accompanied by gaida and type of horo), varnensko horo, daychovo horo, shibilevo horo and etc. 

One of the unique genre of folk music in Bulgaria is wedding music. It is an important part of wedding ceremony and it is mixture of Bulgarian, Turkish and Gypsy music which today spice up with jazz improvisation. It is played with various type of musical instruments like clarinet, saxophone, violin, accordion, santur, kaval (type of Bulgarian flute), etc. Today many wedding bands and musicians give new blood and taste to wedding music and have created new fusion genres.

There are many different type of folk musical instruments which are used in Bulgaria. Kaval is kind of flute similar to Turkish kaval and middle eastern Ney. Gaida is a kind of bagpipe which is popular in Balkan and Southeastern parts of Europe. It is made of goat skin. Gadulka is a bowed string instrument. It usually has three strings, but only one of them is touched by the player fingers. Tambura is another instrument. It is a stringed instrument which has doubled steel strings and is played with a plectrum, in the same manner as a mandolin. It is also common in Macedonia and Croatia.

Women’s choirs is also another notable element in folk music of Bulgaria with unique rhythms and harmony.

Please help us make this article better about the folk music of Bulgaria. You can send us some folk songs from the top menu or send us more information about the folk music of  Bulgaria through contact us page. Also if you see any mistake in the tags of song list, please kindly let us know about it.


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Traditional / folk songs for BULGARIA


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Les Enfants du Monde, Francis Corpataux
Song:  Tambura, Pt; 5
By:  Les Enfants du Monde, Francis Corpataux
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music, tambura
Ibro Lolov
Song:  Shopsko Horo
By:  Ibro Lolov
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music, horo, hora

Ivan Shibilev
Song:  Pravo Horo
By:  Ivan Shibilev
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music, horo, hora
Stefan Zahmanov
Song:  Svornato Horo (Turned Off Horo)
By:  Stefan Zahmanov
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music, gaida, bagpipe

Dragan Karapchanski
Song:  Alfatarska Ruchenitza
By:  Dragan Karapchanski
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music, kaval, gaida
Kostadin Varimezov
Song:  Trakiiska Pesen I Trite Puti
By:  Kostadin Varimezov
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music, bagpipe, gaida

Nadka Karadjova
Song:  Obicham, Mamo
By:  Nadka Karadjova
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music
Nadka Karadjova
Song:  Oi, Yano, Yano
By:  Nadka Karadjova
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music

Valya Balkanska
Song:  Rusa devoika lipsala
By:  Valya Balkanska
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music
Valya Balkanska
Song:  Izlel Je Delio Haidutin
By:  Valya Balkanska
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music, bagpipe, gaida

Daniel Spassov
Song:  Kune Mome
By:  Daniel Spassov
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music
Ramadan Lolov
Song:  Dance From Drianovo
By:  Ramadan Lolov
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music

Kavaltziev Folk Music Ensemble
Song:  Dance From The Berkovica Region
By:  Kavaltziev Folk Music Ensemble
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music
Kavaltziev Folk Music Ensemble
Song:  Dance From The Vladaia Region
By:  Kavaltziev Folk Music Ensemble
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music

Bulgarian National Folk Ensemble
Song:  Pirinsko Horo
By:  Bulgarian National Folk Ensemble
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music, horo, hora
Bulgarian National Folk Ensemble
Song:  More Pile, Slavei Pile (Hey Bird, Hey Nightingale)
By:  Bulgarian National Folk Ensemble
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music

Zdravko Michailov
Song:  Songs Of West-Bulgaria Folk Melodie
By:  Zdravko Michailov
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music
Zdravko Michailov
Song:  Songs Of South Bulgaria
By:  Zdravko Michailov
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music

The London Bulgarian choir
Song:  Pilentse Pee
By:  The London Bulgarian choir
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music
Kadriye Latifova
Song:  Sabahin seher vaktinda
By:  Kadriye Latifova
folk music of Bulgaria, traditional music of Bulgaria, Bulgarian folk music, Turkish folk music


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