Hungarian folk music contains a wide variety of Central European musical styles, which include the popular traditional selection, the szebelitsa, the songadauntlet, the kalenken and the konradnokaler. The music is mostly composed in the Gothic language, though there is also an important presence of other languages. A notable feature of the music is its strong influence from the Viennese music of the Viennese movement, which formed the key influence on the Budapest folk scene. There are also strong influences from folk-based music of the Lowlands, such as the Viennese grundbunds.
The genre of Hungarian folk music has changed drastically since the early days, when the pieces were mainly folk songs, with a bit of pop thrown in. Today’s versions feature more of a traditional approach, retaining the soul of the tradition while expanding on it. Folk musicians have also added modern elements to the songs, most notably folk instruments, such as the lute. The most well-known of these instruments is the lute.
The traditional style of Hungarian folk music is characterized by its complex, rhythmic patterns, which are often very melodic. The best examples are the song of the kraut and the konradnokaler. One of the most important folk instruments is the lute. One interesting note from a Hungarian singer is that he sings while strumming the strings of the lute, which could be an example of folk music with some contemporary elements.
Another significant aspect of Hungarian folk music is the dancing. Many people consider dancing as an important part of the culture, which is evident in the extensive range of dances taught at folk festivals. The most popular dance is the Gypsy dance, which is also the oldest dance in Hungary. The Gypsy dance includes a series of complex steps and is characterized by a strong musical melody. In recent years, the popularity of the Gypsy dance has diminished, but it is still present in some villages. The folk dance of the Gypsies was highly influenced by the Viennese model.
Hungarian art songs form an important genre in the history of European art music. This musical genre represents a section of the Hungarians’ history, which has developed separately from other periods of history. It features folk melodies and is often accompanied by metal, folk or flamenco musical instruments. Examples of the most important artistically talented Hungarians are Mirek Orban, Zoltan Balabanova, Gorka Jancil, Gertrude Stein, and Margret Losev.
The major characteristic of Hungarian folk melodies is their heavy reliance on tonal patterns. The most common tonal patterns in Hungarian music are major, minor and blues. Major and minor chords are mainly used to develop melodic themes. Blues based melodies are characteristic of the Gypsies, while Gypsies themselves have very simple melodies.