Sinbuk Galgokdeul Sori

Sinbuk Galgokdeul Sori
Galgok-ri, Sinbuk-myeon, Yeongam County, Southern Jeolla Province where 『Galgokdeul Sori』 is sung, is a typical rural village adjacent to the vast Naju plain. As most of life is dependent on farming, the original form of Deulsori (literally translated as 'field song') handed down in southern provinces remains intact, but is gradually becoming forgotten with the mechanization of the rural community.

As Lee Sora, a cultural property adviser of the Cultural Heritage Administration of Korea, was investigating and collecting folk songs of Yeongam, and Yoo Seunglim was recording them as part of the process of getting them registered as an intangible cultural property, the value of 『Galgokdeul Sori』 was recognized. In particular, when Yoo Seunglim won the President's Award in the 45th Korean Folk Art Festival back in 2004, the importance of preserving Galgokdeul Sori was further heightened.

『Galgokdeul Sori』retains the original form of Mojjigi Sori (farming song sung when removing rice seedlings from the seedbed for transplanting) seldom found in the farming songs of the southern provinces. Mojjigi Sori used to be sung frequently, but they seem to be disappearing slowly now. Recently it has become a sound rarely heard that remains only in a handful of regions. Fortunately, as Galgokdeul Sori retains its original form, it survives as a valuable example that can help us grasp the essence of Mojjigi Sori of the central part of Southern Jeolla Province.

『Galgokdeul Sori』contains the Gimmaegi Sori (weeding sound) with unique names, i.e. Ojeon (morning) Deulnaegi, and Ohu (afternoon) Deulnaegi. These names are the unique characteristic of Galgokri not bound by the format of the traditional farming songs. In traditional farming songs the Chobeolmaegi (first weeding) and Dubeolmaegi (second weeding) sound different, but in Galgokri they might have concluded that it is more efficient to weed the rice paddy while making different sounds in the morning and afternoon than to make the same sound throughout the day. This is a good example that clearly shows their unique way of life.

The Wuya Sori of『Galgokdeul Sori』consists of an irregular 5-measure rhythm mixing triple rhythms and double rhythms seldom used in farming songs. It is hardly heard in farming songs which try to unify the overall movement to increase work efficiency.

This 5-measure rhythm is derived from the irregular '6 Daegang (a kind of mixed rhythm).' It appears in Geomungo Sanjo of Sin Dongkoi and Gayageum Sanjo of Kim Byeongho, and in the 'passage of the descending monk' in Simcheongga and Heungboga, and the 'passage of the white general' in Jeokbyeokga.

In particular, its composition is the same as the 'Eotmori' rhythm used in folk music, and is of the same kind as the Sinim rhythm appearing in the dance music of Jeolla Province. It also appears in the dance music of the East Coast. Accordingly, it is presumed to be an ancient rhythm of a relatively long history.

Galgokdeul Sori with these characteristics contains the diverse characteristics of the farming songs of the southern provinces, while possessing its own uniqueness. It was handed down to Yoo Seunglim and recently restored as he won the President's Award at the 45th Korean Folk Art Festival.

Composition of Galgokdeul Sori

Mojjigi Sori
Mosimgi Sori
Nonmaegi Sori
  • Chobeolmaegi [first weeding] (Ojeon Deulnaegi Sori, Ohu Deulnaegi Sori)
  • Dubeolmaegi [second weeding] (Ojeon Deulnaegi Sori, Ohu Deulnaegi Sori)
  • Mandeuri (Wooya Sori)
Jangwon Pungjang Sori (Arongdaerong)