The word “folk” means people in general. When it comes to art and culture, the word denotes, “relating to the traditional art or culture of a community or nation”. According to Oxford, “folk music is the music that originates in traditional popular culture or that is written in such a style. Folk music is typically of unknown authorship and is transmitted orally from generation to generation”. Folk music tells the deep rooted story of a region. It takes us away from the noise of urban life, from the fast beats of daily routine to the world that smells of earth, vintage stories, and homely serenity.
The folk music of India carries the same essence that you can find in the festivals of India. Both of them tell the stories of cultural and regional heritage. The origin of Indian festivals, and Indian folk music can be traced back in the mythology of India. For instance, Pandavani, a folk music popular in most parts of Central India, is believed to be as old as the Hindu epic Mahabharata.
The instruments used in playing Indian folk music are as diverse and melodious as the tune of the songs. Tabla, Santoor, Sitar, Wasool, and Kashmiri Saz are used in the kashmiri folk music, Hafiz Nagma, a music that was introduced in Mughal era. Saringi plays the main role along with percussion instruments in the Rajasthani folk music, Maand. Ektara, Dotara and Khamak are the instruments of Bengali folk music, Baul. Some folk music has become an inseparable part of Indian festivals, like- Bihu, Garba or Dandiya.