Inspired by the Mande-speaking tribes in Mali and the countries to its south-east, Manding Music dominates the traditional music scene in Mali. Mostly free of Western influence the music is played solely on local instruments, most famously the Kora – a 21- to 25-string harp-lute. Traditionally, individual families in Mali have been given the responsibility of Malian music. Known as Jelis these bard-families passed the music tradition down through their families to preserve oral history, play at ceremonies, and praise the noble and the wealthy. Today, with corruption running amok, the latter use have profoundly been changed, and music is now a means of criticism of the political establishment. Even the smallest village have their Jeli family, and it's easy to find masters willing to teach you to play the traditional instruments. Instruments that are easy-to-learn, but difficult-to-master.