Great to see the medical dispensary up and running – medicines in cabinet – microscope – solar panels and the electricity about to be connected. Full-time workers and fieldworkers. The government’s hospital is now a clinic for pregnant women – although it is also used for people who are severely ill and need a bed. At the moment it is a dorm for the field students.
There are so many incredible sounding instruments that we have encountered on our travels, yet there is nothing quite like the human voice for it’s range, diversity and uniqueness. From Tuvan throat singing practised amongst nomadic Mongolian farmers to the South Indian art of vocal percussion called Konnakol, every culture, people group and religion uses their vocal chords to produce singing. In some communities, it is so much a part of life that everyone participates, ie. Central African pygmies where everyone is an incredible vocalist and is able to sing complex yodeling.
Having travelled to 49 of the 50 states in North America, I have realised the amazing diversity amongst its people. In fact the Americas (North and South) are home to over 1000 indigenous languages. And what amazing musical sounds and styles from the second line drumming of New Orleans, Inuit throat singing known as katajjaq from Quebec to Brazillian samba and Guyana calypso. What stands out artistically amongst the indigenous people of these lands is their visual arts – their pottery, paintings, jewellery, weavings, basketry, beadwork, carvings and sculptures.
The drum is one of the oldest known musical instruments, being played in various forms by nearly every people group in the world, producing a huge variety of sounds fashioned in many shapes and sizes, the drum provides the foundation to most traditional and modern day music.
For over 4,000 years drums have been used in many diverse situations, e.g. in religious celebrations, for sending signals or messages, on the battlefield during the Civil War, to help African slaves overcome the boredom of hard monotonous work, storytelling in China, carnivals in Brazil, healing, dancing, and entertainment. Read More
The drum in Coast Salish culture is the heartbeat of our strong nation. In the wintertime you can hear the drumbeats of our people going all winter long. I believe when our Coast Salish singers and drummers get together in many numbers we become a powerful presence of voices together singing as one.
Whilst traveling on a coach between Dar Es Salaam and Dodoma – there were endless TV soaps, which are loved by locals and always bring much laughter. Enjoyed this simple story ..
A coffee shop owner brags about a cat he has taught to do many things. He gathers his friends to show them all the wonderful things the cat can do. Everyone is very impressed until one of the guests throws a rat into the shop and the cat forgets its job and chases the rat. The guest says, “The cat may be able to be taught many things but he will never forget what he has been made for.”
A CD & DVD package
of African people
and their song
Recorded live on location in the mud hut village of Mnase, Tanzania – this album captures the heart of the Gogo people who are renowned for their musicality. The tracks cover a diversity of styles and instruments. From ancient close harmonies to the intoxicating rhythms of the female Muheme drummers….from the Pygmy-like vocables to the percussive sounds of the dancer’s leg bells (Njuga). Hear the master players of both the 3 stringed (bow- played) Zeze, and the previously undocumented 10 stringed (plucked) Zeze. Their songs cover many themes of life in this village from a girl singing about hoeing to different groups singing about farming, aids, celebration and welcome. An old man, the last known player (in the area) of the Donondo, sings whilst playing his strange musical bow sounding like a cross between a Jews harp and a Berimbau…..With the sounds of the side blown Baragumu horn, Kayamba shakers, and the tongue wagging shrills (ululation) of the women to the melodic tones of the Marimba Ya Vibao the tracks take us on a musical journey into the heart of this vibrant musical people. Read More
A vast continent that has at least 3000 distinct ethnic groups, (Nigeria alone has more than 370 recognised tribes) each with their own unique culture. Every time we visit, we come back changed by the breathtaking landscapes, the colourful people and the astounding musicality that holds the stories of this incredible land. Read More
Mnase village was as dry as a bone and Bekah’s eyes were soon streaming as strong winds blew up dust into her eyes in almost desert like conditions. Because the fields were so bare, apart from a few decimated crops, plastic litter could be seen everywhere dotting the village landscape. Before plastic all waste would decompose. No refuse collection here! There are incrediblle changes in the community. Seth has encouraged the chairman that each visit we stay in a different part of town in order to continually build friendships. This time we are staying in a house with sofas / couches and amazingly, just connected 3 days ago, electricity! Everyone very pleased to see us – lots of warm welcomes.
The road into Mnase is so dry. River beds dryer than we have ever seen them – in fact one man said he had never seen them this dry – we found him digging 10 foot down to extract small amounts of water in the bone dry river bed. The size of the holes were immense, conical at the top to hold back sand and straighter when hitting rocks. His hard work had brought some success as he had cultivated a small patch of greens next to the river by using the water from these deep pits.
I met Joseph and Martha Manzo in southern California a couple of years ago and since then we have been working together at a few different events. So we are very pleased to announce Joseph’s first EP recording, with funded by Voices from the Nations charity. Digital tracks available now on Bandcamp or CD Baby.
I met Joseph and Martha Manzo in southern California a couple of years ago and since then we have been working together at a few different events. So we are very pleased to announce Joseph’s first EP recording, with Voices from the Nations – this track is called First Sunrise.