To finish this month, here is a fantastic recording from John Storm Roberts, great musicologist who make us dive into the roots of reggae, merengue and calypso. I don not have pictures for illustrating those traditional rhythms because I didn't find some on the web. Maybe they don't exist anymore...
P.S: when I wrote this post, I didn't know that John Storm Roberts had just died. Paix à sa grande âme... Check out the article on N.Y.Times.
1.Calunga (Dominican Republic)
2. Ya Lo Ve (Dominican Republic)
Both of these pices have a very high African content. The singing is a called-and-response pattern, by far the most common african-drived vocal technique in the new world.
3. Amantina (mangulina, Dominican Republic)
4. Canto de Hacha (merengue, (Dominican Republic)
Those two pieces are charectiristic of the country dance music of the Dominican Republic; both have the typical accompaniment of a small accordian, tambora drum and metal
5. Ay Lola Eh (Dominican Republic)
6. Salve Corrida
7. Pindo Mama Pindo
This last piece have been recorded in a tobacco-grinding factory. Most of the work is done by hand, and the laborers sing at their work and preserve and perfect many old forms.
8. Les Deux Jumeaux (bolero, Haiti)
9. Joséphine (méringue, Haiti)
Haiti has a great deal of highly African folk music. The best-known rhythm in Haitian popular music is the méringue, which has a chicken-and-egg relationship with its Dominican cousin but has developped very differently. The bolero spread throughtout the Spanish.
1. Percy Where him gone? (Jamaica)
This is an example of Tambo drumming. Singing and playing both show many africanisms.
2. Bahl 'Oman Bahl (Jamaica)
3. Georgie Lyon (Jamaica)
Two digging songs, in call-and-response orm, acompagned by the rhythm of the pickaxes that Jamaican countrymen still use for digging the fields.
4. Emmanuel Road (Jamaica)
One of the best known Jamaican songs, Emmanuel road originated as a ring-play or game song (probably among quarry-men) that involves the passing of heavy stones round a circule of squatting men. This song has been heard as a calypso and in many other versions. The present recording shows it in its the original forms, sung in the thudding rhythm of the stones being passed around a circle.
5. Mango Time (Jamaica)
6. When I was In Colon (Jamaica)
7. Chi Chi Bud-Oh! (Jamaica)
8. Obeahman (Jamaica)
9. Mummies (Dominican Republic)
This recording presents a phenomenon native to the small islands of Saint Kitts and Nevis. The "mummies" perform in the streets at Christmas, reciting, playing and dancing in colorful costumes.