Sri Lanka can be divided in to seven categories as seen today.
1) Traditional folk music of Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka had
traditional folk music from the beginning of its race, which has been
enjoyed and developed under the Buddhist environment.They were used by
the ordinary people.
2) Local drama music (Kolam/Nadagam/Noorthy)
music based on law country tunes and it is not a developed form of
music, as tunes were not developed. Limited to very few notes about
3~4 and used by the ordinary people for pleasure and entertainments.
Nadagam music is more developed form of drama influenced from
South Indian street drama which was introduced by some South Indian
Artists.Phillippu Singho from Negombo in 1824 Performed
“Harishchandra Nadagama” in Hnguranketha which was originally
written in Telingu language. Later “Maname”, “Sanda kinduru”
and few others were introduced.
Don Bastian of Dehiwala introduced Noorthy firstly by looking
at Indian dramas and then John De Silva developed it and did
Ramayanaya in 1886.
classical music (Ragadari Music)
Tagor visited Sri Lanka with a group in 1934 and performed a drama and
laid the foundation stone for “Sri Pali” at Horana and later
introduced music, Art and Dancing. His visit to Sri Lanka made a big
change and the awareness in the music scene and lot of Sri Lankan
started visiting India for higher education.
4) South Indian
classical music (Karnataka Music)
This type of
Music can be seen in South India and northern part of Sri Lanka and
used by the Tamil community.
5) Tamil and
Hindustani Film music
Sri Lanka did not
produced films and had to export from India during the early periods.
Music for films such as “Kadawunu Poronduwa”, “Varadunu
Kurumanama”, “and Angulimala” and others too copied from Indian
film songs. “Rekhawa” produced Sir Lester James Peiris was the
first Sri Lankan film produced using Sri Lankan music.
6) Western classical
wanted to introduce western music to Sri Lanka during their period of
rule from 1815.It was a success and soon Sri Lankan were able to learn
the piano as it was not that difficult to learn as Indian music.
7) Sinhala light music
visited India to learn music and later stared introducing light music.Ananda
Samarakone was the pioneer of this attempt and and He composed
National Anthem too. Then Sunil Santha who also did not stick
to Hindustani music introduced light music of his own. Please visit http://www.info.lk/music
to listen few of them online.
Nowadays this is the most popular type of music in Sri Lanka
and enriched with the influence of folk music, kolam music, Nadagam
music, Noorthy music, Film music, Classical music, Western music and
others too. Most of the musician in Sri lanka have come out with their
own creations and become
success in this category of music.