By Kofi Agawu

ISBN-10: 0521480841

ISBN-13: 9780521480840

The exact caliber of African song lies in its rhythmic constitution and scholarly paintings in this tune has frequently under pressure drumming because the web site at which 'complex' rhythms are cultivated. Kofi Agawu argues that drumming is just one between a number of modes of rhythmic expression and extra fruitful method of the knowledge of African song is thru spoken language. during this e-book, he constructs a soundscape of the Northern Ewe humans of Ghana which demonstrates the pervasiveness of various sorts of rhythmic expression of their day-by-day lives. He then devotes a bankruptcy every one to an research of rhythm in language, music, drumming and dancing, musical functionality and people narration. A concluding bankruptcy addresses a few of the ideological elements that experience prompted the illustration of African rhythm. An accompanying CD allows the reader to paintings heavily with the speech and tune mentioned.

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Extra info for African Rhythm: A Northern Ewe Perspective

Example text

M. 00 English Ewe dawn morning afternoon late afternoon evening night middle of night bl\li I\df I\cb )(Ctro fie' za za titina Siwu Twi ;qesr~ ahomakye ampa aWla kaya kalome iwe' klE kutsuE kase' Kasi! nde' anwomere anadzo anadzo konkon creative play. Northern Ewe culture is, of course, never static, and so it makes sense that its continual reinvention should involve a rereading and revising of some of the prescriptions of the past. The following account is fictional in the sense that it has been constructed to illustrate a point.

Popular lullaby practices may be included in this lesson. Elsewhere, pupils are rehearsing a neotraditional anthem, or learning about the institutions of chieftaincy, or practicing some traditional dances. Let us dwell on two of these. A. Middle School at Ho-Bankoe are learning Dr. Ephraim Amu's anthem "Mommyenk:J so Mforo" (composed in I947) in preparation for a coming school district singing competition. Since they do not read music, they are having to learn entirely by ear. Although he reads staff notation, the music teacher does so with difficulty, so he has transposed the entire work into tonic solfa notation.

When the chief himself speaks, he does so through his spokesperson or "linguist," the :Jkyeame, whose role is to "hear" what the chief has to say so that others may hear it too. In the same way, the chief will not be addressed directly, but through an intermediary. It is partly because of this obligatory mediation, which in turn engenders several repetitions of the same verbal formulas, that the proceeding as a whole acquires a periodic sense. m. The onset of darkness in Northern Eweland signifies both ending and beginning.

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African Rhythm: A Northern Ewe Perspective by Kofi Agawu

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