Saint Lucia is home to many vibrant oral and folk traditions. The music of Saint Lucia is based on elements derived from the music of Africa, especially rhythmically, and Western Europe, dances like the quadrille, polka and waltz. The banjo and cuatro are iconic Lucian folk instruments, especially a four-stringed banjo called the bwa poye. Celebratory songs called jwé show lyricism, and rhythmic complexity. The most important of the Afro-Lucian Creole folk dances is the kwadril.
Music is an integral part of Lucian folk holidays and celebrations, as well as the good-natured rivalry between the La Rose and La Marguerite societies. There is little Western classical music on Saint Lucia, and the country's popular music industry is only nascent. There are few recording options, though live music and radio remain a vital part of Lucian culture. Popular music from abroad, especially Trinidadian styles like calypso and soca, is widespread.
Music education has long been a part of Lucian public education in the primary school age groups. More recently, it has been introduced to older students, many of whom now participate in String Orchestras, wind ensembles, steelpan bands and other musical enrichment opportunities.
There is also a well-known government assisted non-profit music school, the Saint Lucia School of Music. The Ministry of Education sponsors a variety of festivals and other special events. The island is also home to the prestigious Saint Lucia Jazz Festival and the Creole celebration Jounen Kwéyòl