Daoist Music of Shanghai

From FYSK: Daoist Culture Centre - Database
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Daoist Music
Classification and Forms of Daoist Music
Vocal Music
Instrumental Music
Musical Instruments
Schools of Daoist Music
Music of the Orthodox Oneness Tradition
Music of the Complete Perfection Tradition
Compilations of Daoist Music Scores
The Ritual of Jade Tunes
The Daoist Musical Scores Composed by Imperial Order during the Great Ming Dynasty
The Orthodox Rhythm of the Complete Perfection Tradition
Daoist Music of Different Places
The White Cloud Temple, Beijing Suzhou Mt Longhu
Mt Wudang Mt Mao Shanghai
Mt Lao Shanxi Plain Sichuan
The Northeast Taiwan Hong Kong

Brief introduction

The Daoist music of Shanghai has gradually developed and perfected itself with the introduction of Daoist rituals. Since Mt Mao, Mt Longhu and so on have influenced Daoism in Shanghai, we can discover the relation between the Daoist music of Shanghai still being sung and played, and that of the south of Suzhou and Mt Longhu in Jiangxi. Since the recent century, social life in Shanghai has greatly changed. While adjusting itself to the social changes, Daoism in Shanghai, from its rituals to its music, has attached more and more importance to being loved by the people. Therefore, the Daoist music of Shanghai has formed a closer relation with folk music, especially the traditional stringed and woodwind music of the south of the Yangtze River, and has evolved into Daoist music with Shanghai style and discriminating features.


When singing and reciting the scriptural rhythms, different lines are combined with the tune accompaniment, in order to make the levels of singing clearly distinguished and let the singer get enough breath. The tune of the first sentence is always different from that of the subsequent repeated chant, and sometimes the first sentence is started with a negative tune and then gradually turns into the main tune, so as to cause changes in the tunes and the nature of tunes. As for the accompanying instruments, the bent flute and bells and drums are used as primary instruments, and moreover, the playing of stringed and plucked instruments is stressed to make the music sound more elegant and full.