East African

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Title Audio Collection Description Composersort icon Date All terms
Koras (Chorus) | East African

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ILAM

A Mamboko dance song with accordian and struck iron. The "struck iron" was an old starter ring from the flywheel of a car. It is necessary to have a circular or 'S' shaped piece of metal for convenient playing of the double beat. The performer called it 'Kengere' or 'Beru' bell.
The sweepers in Nairobi, they say, always come from Embu. Kibunga Waita, the iron player, was no exception. Elsewhere in Africa certain tribes tend to adopt one occupation exclusively.
After hearing a few Kikuyu songs to the accompaniment of the iron and accordian, the listener who is not case hardened to the noise, may experience a singing in the ears for several hours afterwards.
Listening to this kind of Kikuyu music is more a feat of endurance than an aesthetic pleasure.
Further details refer ILAM field card number: F3H 4

1952-06-08 Accordion | Dance song | East African | Embu | Folk music | ILAM | Indigenous music | Johnnie Murethe Wambu | Kengere struck iron | Kenya | Kibunga Waita | Kikuyu | Mwamboko dance | Struck iron
Matsaire | East African

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ILAM

Topical song with guitar. Feliciano's pronunciation of Ndau words, they say, is like a child's speech. "Matsaire, you have finished all the people." Matsaire was killed in a certain village, and his ghost came back demanding recompense, under pain of death to all the village. Details from ILAM field card (H1P-10, 11 - 25).

1955-08-10 Chibuto district | East African | Gomez o Feliciano, Muntano | Guitar | ILAM | Indigenous music | Mozambique | Ndau | Portuguese East Africa | Sul do Save Province | Topical song
Chebusit | East African

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ILAM

A praise song with Kibugandet 5 string wish bone lyre, resonated on a parafin tin. The solo singer, singing in falsetto, praises his country and many of its desirable places. He mentions, among others, the Administrative centre at Kericho, some 25 miles away, which he says is 'full of words', referring to the information service supplied to the country by the office of the District Commissioner. This wishbone shaped frame lyre is help onto the top of an empty 4 gallon parafin tin. At the end of his song the lyre slipped off its resonator.
Details from ILAM field card number: D6L 4

1950-09-15 East African | ILAM | Indigenous music | Kapkatet | Kenya | Kericho | Kibugandet lyre | Kipsigis | Kipsigis district | Ngasura, Kinutit Arap | Praise song
Chemirocha (I) | East African

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ILAM

Praise song with Chepkongo 6 string bowl lyre. The main theme of this song is affection for the Kipsigis country. He also asks 'why the whitemen should have taken over the country' which incidentally they themselves took from others in the past. He comes, he says, from the Sotik nearby. The name 'Chemirocha' is their pronunciation of 'Jimmy Rodgers' whose gramophone records were the first to be heard in the district. It is now synonomous for anything strange or new.
Details from ILAM field card number: D6L 6

1950-09-15 Bowl lyre | Chepkongo bowl lyre | Cheriro Arap | East African | ILAM | Indigenous music | Kapkatet | Kenya | Kericho | Kipsigis | Kipsigis district | Korogorem | Mosonik, Bekyibei Arap | Praise song | Vocal
Arap Tapartele olei yo lalei yo | East African

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ILAM

A praise song with a Chepkongo 6 string bowl lyre. The player flips the bridge of the lyre with a finger tip as he plays. The song is largely a repetition by the chorus of the words "olei yo lalei yo" a kind of "Hey - nonny - nonny."
The singer also brings into his song the names of many places he has visited and likes in common with his audience.
Both Kipsigis and Nandi are noted for their patriotism, their love of country as such, which they frequently express in song. This is comparitively rare with Bantu people who do not, as a rule, praise the beauty of the countryside and are mostly insensitive to scenery. Details from ILAM field card number: D6L 1

1950-09-15 Bowl lyre | Chepkongo bowl lyre | Chepkwony,Kepkoske Arap | East African | ILAM | Indigenous music | Kenya | Kipsigis | Kipsigis | Kipsigis | Praise song | Vocal
Arap Chemonget | East African

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ILAM

A praise song with Chepkongo 6 string bowl lyre. This lyre is strummed and fingered like the Bangwe zither of Nyasaland. The right hand strums the strings and the left mutes or opens the 6 strings, making it possible to play two or three chords on the open un-muted strings. The singer mentions by name his home village, places of common interest to his friends. The player flips the body of his lyre on the 2nd and 4th beats. In common with several African verse makers, the singer sings in couplets, repeating the second phrase and making it the first line of the next.
Details from ILAM field card number: D6L 3

1950-09-15 Bowl lyre | Chepkongo bowl lyre | Chepkwony, Kepkoske Arap | East African | ILAM | Indigenous music | Kapkatet | Kenya | Kericho | Kipsigis | Kipsigis district | Praise song | Sitonik, Kipkemo Arap
Hongahonga lele | East African

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ILAM

An Mbeta pipe dance with Viyanzi vertical flutes, 2 friction sticks, and tin rattles.

The players start to play beginning with the pipe 3rd from the lowest. Each piper above them takes his rhythm from the next man below. If one fails to get started he holds up all the others above. The leader then comes along and gets his rhythm for him and his companions can then take up the rhythm until the treble player at last joins in.

Set of 13 pipes. The tuning of this set was as follows:- 584, 320, 440, 392, 336, 292, giving a pentatonic scale. The total range was just over two octaves.

1950-00-00 Dar-es-Salaam | East African | ILAM | Mbeta pipe dance | Selemani, Pembe | Tanganyika | Tanzania | Zaramo
Sound Effects |

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ILAM

Further details refer to ILAM reel number: A51.

0000-00-00 Animals | Birds | East African | Frogs | ILAM | Indigenous music
Sound Effects |

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ILAM

Further details refer to ILAM reel number: A52.

0000-00-00 Animals | Birds | East African | Frogs | ILAM | Indigenous music
Sound Effects |

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ILAM

Further details refer to ILAM reel number: A52.

0000-00-00 Animals | Birds | East African | ILAM | Indigenous music
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