David Rycroft South Africa Collection

KwaZulu Natal tape six: Uyolal' udleni? (What will you feed on at bedtime?).

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  • Subjects

    Zulu, courting songs-Africa (Zulu) , umvumo

  • Recording date

    1974 to 1975

  • Recording locations

    KwaZulu Natal South Africa

  • Description

    Rycroft and Princess Magogo sings this song which is an old Zulu umvumo courting song. sung by the young men sing at the qoma ceremony. In Zulu custom, once a girl has reached maturity, she is given permission by the elders to chose a lover. Once she has been given permission to chose, the girl makes the name of her beloved known through songs accompanied by the umakhweyana musical bow. Once the older girls (amaqhikiza) discover her choice, they invite the young man to a qoma ceremony at the girl's homestead. qoma courting ceremonies normally include a number of young people, at the ceremony, the girls make their choices known to the older girls. When the chosen boy arrives, he is beaten by the older girls with a stick until he retreats. The girls then start to make beer for the occasion while the boys sing a song of thanks (umvumo chorus), and start to move towards where the girls are making beer (Rycroft, D.,1975, 'A Royal Account of Music in Zulu Life with Translation, Annotation, and Musical Transcription', Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, Vol 38, No 2, 354). Very good quality recording.

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