Skip directly to content
  • 79709

Track listing

Click tracks with speaker icon to listen

West Africa: Drum, Chant & Instrumental Music

news & reviews

Select any filter and click on Apply to see results

  • about this album

    Originally released in 1976 as Africa: Drum, Chant & Instrumental Music

    In order to provide a historical context for this recording, the liner notes that accompanied its original release have been reprinted in full below. The text has not been edited to reflect changes in general cultural perceptions or specific factual information that may have occurred since then.

    —Ed.

    The people of the semi-arid bush country of West Africa depend on music to nourish nearly every phase of their lives. In the ceremonies and rituals celebrating birth, marriage, initiations, and formal religious worship, music prescribed for the occasion is performed by professional musicians and constitutes an essential element of the event. Ordinary daily activities are surrounded by many types of folk music, such as work songs, solo instrumental improvisations, medicinal music, the music of wandering minstrels, spontaneous songs, and music performed purely for the participants’ enjoyment. Dedicated young musicians are often heard practicing from sunrise to sunset. Even the young children form musical groups that can be heard beating out captivating rhythms on bottles, kerosene tins, and other objects.


    African gods are believed to be great music-lovers who scorn performances that lack energetic animation. The quantity and variety of music in African society reflect the deeply religious attitude of the people. Besides passing on philosophical knowledge from one person or group to another, religious music helps to create and strengthen the unity between the people’s beliefs and their everyday lives. Striving constantly for perfection in every aspect of their music, Africans illustrate the reality of an old saying: “When the music is sweet, even the crippled will wish to dance.”

    —STEPHEN JAY, 1976

    Credits

    PRODUCTION CREDITS
    Originally released in 1976 as Africa: Drum, Chant & Instrumental Music (H-72073).
    Recorded in Niger, Mali, and Burkina Faso by Stephen Jay
    Editing & mastering: Robert C. Ludwig, Masterdisk Corp.
    Coordinator: Teresa Sterne
    Re-mastered by Robert C. Ludwig

    Design: Doyle Partners
    Cover Photography: © Guy Le Querrec/Magnum Photos
    1993. Niamey, Niger. Near the stadium.

on May 29, 2008 - 7:14pm
Release Date: 
Tuesday, August 27, 2002 (All day)
Cover Art: 
Nonesuch Selection Number: 

79709

Number of Discs in Set: 
1disc
150
338
Tuesday, August 27, 2002 (All day)
0
0
Artist Name: 
Explorer Series: Africa
Album Status: 
UPC/Price: 
UPC: 
075597970920BUN
Price: 
10.00
Label: 
CD+MP3
UPC: 
075597970968
Price: 
9.00
Label: 
MP3
Description: 

Originally released in 1976 as Africa: Drum, Chant & Instrumental Music

In order to provide a historical context for this recording, the liner notes that accompanied its original release have been reprinted in full below. The text has not been edited to reflect changes in general cultural perceptions or specific factual information that may have occurred since then.

—Ed.

The people of the semi-arid bush country of West Africa depend on music to nourish nearly every phase of their lives. In the ceremonies and rituals celebrating birth, marriage, initiations, and formal religious worship, music prescribed for the occasion is performed by professional musicians and constitutes an essential element of the event. Ordinary daily activities are surrounded by many types of folk music, such as work songs, solo instrumental improvisations, medicinal music, the music of wandering minstrels, spontaneous songs, and music performed purely for the participants’ enjoyment. Dedicated young musicians are often heard practicing from sunrise to sunset. Even the young children form musical groups that can be heard beating out captivating rhythms on bottles, kerosene tins, and other objects.


African gods are believed to be great music-lovers who scorn performances that lack energetic animation. The quantity and variety of music in African society reflect the deeply religious attitude of the people. Besides passing on philosophical knowledge from one person or group to another, religious music helps to create and strengthen the unity between the people’s beliefs and their everyday lives. Striving constantly for perfection in every aspect of their music, Africans illustrate the reality of an old saying: “When the music is sweet, even the crippled will wish to dance.”

—STEPHEN JAY, 1976

DescriptionExcerpt: 

From the semi-arid bush country of Niger, Mali, and Burkina Faso comes the energetic, animated ceremonial and ritual music performed here by professional musicians including pitched-drum master Isah Hamani; also featuring field recordings of simple work songs, minstrel tunes, and other folk music of daily life played on reeds, lute, and drums.

ProductionCredits: 

PRODUCTION CREDITS
Originally released in 1976 as Africa: Drum, Chant & Instrumental Music (H-72073).
Recorded in Niger, Mali, and Burkina Faso by Stephen Jay
Editing & mastering: Robert C. Ludwig, Masterdisk Corp.
Coordinator: Teresa Sterne
Re-mastered by Robert C. Ludwig

Design: Doyle Partners
Cover Photography: © Guy Le Querrec/Magnum Photos
1993. Niamey, Niger. Near the stadium.