With the sound of beating drums and chanting voices all around, the small African compound had come to life, illuminated by the light of a new moon. As the heat of the day subsided, the cool breeze of the evening brought renewed energy into Mnase village life. Scraping, sliding sounds of dancing feet against the red ochre coloured earth floor, swished in time with the hourglass shaped percussive instruments, enticing everyone into the intoxicating rhythm. No one could keep still, even a feeding mother sitting cross-legged swayed in time, picking out vocal harmonies or answering sung phrases, seemingly oblivious to the clinging child at her breast.
As we sat entranced by the spontaneous nature of this musical explosion the day to day survival of these Tanzanian’s had been forgotten. Patiently waiting for the rains, their crops were slowly but surely withering under the brutal heat of an East African sun. Yet, there was hope in the air, and this evening it had come, as it often did, through the sound of the drum, coaxing us to dream of a new day. Read More