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These further developed into various forms of music through succeeding dynasties, producing the rich heritage of music that is part of the Chinese cultural landscape today.
Chinese music continues to evolve in the modern times, and more contemporary forms have also emerged.
Chinese philosophers took varying approaches to music.
Instruments of Central Asian origin such as pipa were adopted in China, the Indian Heptatonic scale was introduced in the 6th century by a musician from Kucha named Sujiva, although the heptatonic scale was later abandoned..
The oldest extant written Chinese music is "Youlan" (幽蘭) or the Solitary Orchid, composed during the 6th or 7th century, but has also been attributed to Confucius.
A mural from the tomb of Xu Xianxiu in Taiyuan, Shanxi province, dated 571 AD during the Northern Qi Dynasty, showing male court musicians playing stringed instruments, either the liuqin or pipa, and a woman playing a konghou (harp) Archaeological evidence indicates that music culture developed in China from a very early period.
Excavations in Jiahu Village in Wuyang County, Henan found bone flutes dated to 8,000 years ago, and clay music instruments called Xun thought to be 6,000 years old have been found in the Hemudu sites in Zhejiang and Banpo in Xi'an.
A wide variety of these instruments, such as guzheng and dizi are indigenous, although many popular traditional musical instruments were introduced from Central Asia, such as the erhu and pipa.