What is the music of Fiji like? Discover all about Fiji's music here from it's past to the music of today crossing many genres and cultures.
The music of Fiji contents are:
Their folk music has a distinctly Polynesian feel to it. As pictured below, modern Fijians use guitars, ukuleles, mandolins, and other indigenous instruments like lali drums (pictured far left in the picture and explained below).
If you're a church goer, then going along to a Sunday church service you'll likely encounter wonderful choir singing. Vocal church music is very prominent in folk music.
Nose flute - yes, a flute played by the nose. In days long gone, made from a piece of bamboo and around 70cm long, it was played lying down with the head resting on a bamboo pillow. (Really, Fiji is so laid-back that they used to play musical instruments lying down!) And, even more amazingly, apparently used to attract the opposite sex.
Shell trumpets and whistles - used for communication.
Portable war drums - used to alert danger and for communicating tactics on the battlefield.
Lali drum - this is the one you will still probably see and also hear. It is still being used to beckon people to church, if there's danger, and for a meeting at the chief's bure. Made from resonant timbers, it's deep call can travel long distances significantly past the edge of the village. A smaller version of the lali drum is used as a musical instrument (as pictured above).
A pair of lali drums
Modern music in Fiji includes genres such as reggae, hip hop, pop, and rock. Successful artists likely need to move abroad to somewhere like New Zealand or Hawaii.
Two of the biggest music festivals in Fiji are:
1. Fiji International Jazz Festival - 3-day jazz festival with musicians from
around the world
When: early to mid-April
Location: Coral Coast
2. South Pacific World Music Festival - 5-day music festival with acclaimed
Fijian and international musicians
When: late November
Indian music has a heavy influence on the Indo-Fijian population. Read up in our Indo Fiji Music section.
Fiji has produced some stars across races and across music genres. Check out who and their music on our Stars of Music Fiji section.