Date recorded: July , 1963
Physical form: Reel to Reel
Tape number: T1267
Track Number: 1
Archive ID: T1267
Note: Constraints on behavior by age and by sex. In Japan old women are broad in body and sing lots of bawdy songs. In West Africa old women know all the songs. Men forget but might play instruments. In Western Europe both sexes would know the ballads. Relationship between learning to speak and socialization. A long discussion of African music. The Bantus and circum-Saharan presence of African bardic style, perhaps borrowed from Kushites - solo singer over complex accompaniment - is related to American blues. Bantus a gardening people originally. Cattle relatively recent. Kushite pattern of caste stratification at its peak in Ethiopia. Hot drumming not universal among the Bantus. Does not occur in South or in the court orchestras of the Watusi. Hottest drumming in west and equatorial Africa. Arensberg: Pygmy style must have been general aboriginal style. Lomax: African style characterized by both voice relaxation and vocal tension, alternation and play not characteristic of western music. Heterophony is bardic, not present where there is a council of elders. Arensberg: In Guinea, men do all the agricultural work. Women are marketers. Peculiar marriage. Women come into the hut at night. Dahomi and Ashanti have double descent. Ashanti are avunculocal. Their arrangements baffled Murdock. These peoples had great gatherings - men's and women's choruses with bit orchestras of drums. They had hot drumming. Mother drum and cross rhythms. Sang fast and forcefully with rasp. In South Africa, the Zulus and Sotho orchestras were less complexly integrated, unison not interlocked. Choruses were interlocked. There was no independence or level of dissent permitted to the women. These were the spear warriors with lion's skins who got to South Africa after the arrival of the Afrikaaners. They sing forcefully, with great roaring, lion-like voices with rasp. Alan Lomax: We need to beef up the African sample and consult.
Belongs to: Arensberg/Lomax, 1963-1968
About the session: Conrad Arensberg and Alan Lomax discuss varied ethnomusicology and performance style and culture topics. Some conversations include Victor Grauer.
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