Crying marriage song
The "crying marriage song" is a folk song originating from the Tujia people. According to their customs, brides begin to cry a month before the wedding day using various words. The song conveys the bride's attachment to their loved ones and recounts the Tujia women's sad fate of having no say in their marriage. The marriage is arranged by a matchmaker and her parents. Conventionally, the bride must cry for seven days at least and a month before the wedding.
The "crying marriage song" is a systematic jeremiad of the Tujia women and a mirror of the feudal marriage system.
The song follows a structure of a "united music system". The bride sings a long passage repeatedly, and in the process the rhythm changes with the new words. The changing rhythm, together with the weeping, expresses the singer's profound anguish.
Adopting regular tune and a fixed text, the "crying marriage song" features rich content and impeccable rhythm.