Trevor Wiggins Ghana Music Collection

Ambaa Jangban and John Bosco Antare

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  • Type

    sound

  • Duration

    02:03:41

  • Shelf mark

    C791/6

  • Subjects

    Xylophones

  • Recording date

    1994-11-09

  • Is part of (Collection)

    Trevor Wiggins Ghanaian Music Collection

  • Recording locations

    Ghana

  • Performers

    Jangban, Ambaa, Antare, John Bosco

  • Recordist

    Wiggins, Trevor

  • Abstract

    (1) Pognyaale kyen dali, vaaro ti nye kamamaare; (2) Sebro bambala wele, sebro naa nang be wa. Lit: Dancing they blow the big flute, dancing chief has not come. Meaning: The large flute (wele) has sounded, but the the chief dancer has not come. Notes: Composed by Mamaa Borro who was as the time, the chief for the youth of Nandom in the late 1950's. Mamaa Borro died over 30 years ago. + Kpere bandazuzie (dance); (3) Kpaa ngmaa pogmole ben Tuopare. Lit: Ugly person, free girls at Tuoper market. Meaning: If you are ugly or have something wrong with you, you can get a cheap girl to marry at Tuoper market. Notes: An old song composed by people from Guo (1 mile beyond Tuoper from Nandom). Tuoper market was one of the biggest in the area and there were always young men and women there looking for a marriage partner. It was said that there were so many girls that even if you only had 10kobo (Nigerian word for pennies) you could find a girl to marry. Kpaa ngmaa literally means "short back of the head." + Kokoguule pole na nye Naangmin zo gori e wa (dance). Elements of Sebro bambala wele leading to Kpere bandazuzie (dance); (4) Nandomme devieli dem + Kpere bandazuzie (dance); (5) M ba kangkanglile, na por kangkang lob me. Lit: My friend kangkang[name of tree] bird, collect the fruit of the kangkang and throw it down to me. Meaning: There is a special bird which nests in the kangkang tree. The man is trying to talk to the bird asking it to throw him some fruit. This is also taken to mean that if you are a good friend, your friends will also help you when you are in need. Notes: Old song from Jirapa + Kpere bandazuzie (dance); (6) Puo yele yee nie kung bang. Lit: Your secret within you, nobody would know. Meaning: If you keep your secrets to yourself other people can't know them. Notes: A song from Jirapa. + Doo dem nu lo kele yaw[ere] (dance) and Kpere bandazuzie; (7) Dekuor saablaa bero, saablaa. Lit: Bachelor eating bowl is big, eating bowl (repeat). The bachelor cannot lift, eating and not satisfied. Meaning: The bachelor has a big eating bowl (for TZ), so big he cannot lift it, but he is still not satisfied. Notes: Old song, from the British time. Composed by Sangnuo Borro + Ti lin, lin, ti lin, lin (dance). Lit: Go higher, higher. Notes: Fast bewaa. Goes with e.g. Dekuor saablaa bero and Pogle ter bu kang n zeli o sib (dance). Meaning: The girl has something I want (her favour) but when I begged she refused to give it to me. Notes: Fast bewaa. Can go with e.g. Sebro bambala wele. This is a dance rather than a song as such. The dance is for lovers and couples together. The words were added later to identify the dance and make the couples laugh. Nkrumah's time. (8) Kpaa ngmaa pogmole ben Tuopare. Lit: Ugly person, free girls at Tuoper market. Meaning: If you are ugly or have something wrong with you, you can get a cheap girl to marry at Tuoper market. Notes: An old song composed by people from Guo (1 mile beyond Tuoper from Nandom). Tuoper market was one of the biggest in the area and there were always young men and women there looking for a marriage partner. It was said that there were so many girls that even if you only had 10kobo (Nigerian word for pennies) you could find a girl to marry. Kpaa ngmaa literally means "short back of the head." + Pogle ter bu kang n zeli o sib (dance) and Doo dem nu lo kele yaw (dance); (9) Vielu daa na Nandomme mi nyu, akuraku. Lit: Very good pito Nandom people drink, wonderful, The rainwater comes, comes, comes and turns to pito then we drink, wonderful. Meaning: Self evident! Notes: Not composed by Nandom people! Composed in the early 1960's by people from Tuoper who always enjoyed the Nandom pito when they came to the town. Although akuraku does mean "wonderful" its precise meaning is also "I'm surprised its so good!"+ Doo dem nu lo kele yaw (dance) and Kpere bandazuzie; (10) Balu, balu, balu, o ma lieba, o ma lieba + Doo dem nu lo kele yaw (dance) and Kpere bandazuzie; (11) Nandomme Ali nu bang bewaa, e gbele kabe. Lit: The people of Nandom Ali (name) knows how to dance bewaa, legs no strength. Meaning: Ali from Nandom can dance bɛwaa but has no strength in his legs. Notes: Old song from time the bɛwaa group started written by Alissi. See also Pataasi nyure funayinbie kang yame wa hala + Doo dem nu lo kele yaw (dance). Lit: The man falls down and gets up again. Meaning: The men should jump up and down i.e. dance vigorously. Dance song/section. Notes: Used in older style if bɛwaa in particular. This is the bass/support part often played by the male gyil. It is used to give an opportunity for slightly freer dancing etc. (12) Kpaa ngmaa pogmole ben Tuopare.Lit: Ugly person, free girls at Tuoper market. Meaning: If you are ugly or have something wrong with you, you can get a cheap girl to marry at Tuoper market. Notes: An old song composed by people from Guo (1 mile beyond Tuoper from Nandom). Tuoper market was one of the biggest in the area and there were always young men and women there looking for a marriage partner. It was said that there were so many girls that even if you only had 10kobo (Nigerian word for pennies) you could find a girl to marry. Kpaa ngmaa literally means "short back of the head." (13) Zong be nyere yee e kye nyuur pataasi. Lit: Blind person who cannot see, drink alchohol, even you, blind person who cannot see, drink what is in the bottle. Meaning: If you are blind you should not drink alchohol. Cut your coat according to your size.Notes: Old song, 1950's. Composed by Sangnuo Borro. + Koli, koli, kaa, kaa siigbile nyuure (dance). Lit: Go back, go back, see, see, bambara beans are smelling. Meaning: Go and check your bambara beans - I can smell them burning Notes: Slow bɛwaa, but not an exit song. Song or dance section of Zong bɛ nyere yee e kye nyuur pataasi. Dates from 1950's. (14) Katarima kyen bekuone yir o paar ti leb zamakuo kyire. Katarima[woman's name] went to bekuorne clan, her vagina was hit and instead of blood the dregs of pito came. Someone's son (who tested her found she was not sweet and sent her away) OR (tried to put it back but you can't do it except by magic) Go home Katarima, go straight home. Meaning: Katarima is a well-known woman from the chief's clan. She was flirting too much and behaving like a prostitute so the song was composed to bring her down a bit. The song is implying that she is like the last dregs of pito making (zamakuo) - anyone can have it or pour it away. Notes: Sung around early part of 1960's. Composed by the Nandom group. The essential word in this was changed for some public performances from paar (vagina) to kpaa (back of the head). At least 2 versions of the song (alternative in brackets) (15) Zong be nyere yee e kye nyuur pataasi. Lit: Blind person who cannot see, drink alchohol, even you, blind person who cannot see, drink what is in the bottle. Meaning: If you are blind you should not drink alchohol. Cut your coat according to your size.Notes: Old song, 1950's. Composed by Sangnuo Borro. (16) Katarima kyen bekuone yir o paar ti leb zamakuo kyire. Lit: Katarima[woman's name] went to bekuorne clan, her vagina was hit and instead of blood the dregs of pito came. Someone's son (who tested her found she was not sweet and sent her away) OR (tried to put it back but you can't do it except by magic) Go home Katarima, go straight home. Meaning: Katarima is a well-known woman from the chief's clan. She was flirting too much and behaving like a prostitute so the song was composed to bring her down a bit. The song is implying that she is like the last dregs of pito making (zamakuo) - anyone can have it or pour it away. Notes: Sung around early part of 1960's. Composed by the Nandom group. The essential word in this was changed for some public performances from paar(vagina) to kpaa(back of the head). At least 2 versions of the song (alternative in brackets) (17) Timbe langne, timbe langne, yee. Lit: I won't pair with you, I won't pair with you, no. Woman who will not go for water. Meaning: We will not cooperate or work together. You will not do your fair share. Notes: The second part of the song plus a ho-ho-ya-ho response is also used separately (V13/11:10). Written by the Nandom group according to Bangnido. Nandom wanted its own administration district separate from Lawra to whom they were joined at the time, but you can't say that directly in song. So the song was composed about 2 wives not wanting to share a husband, but intending a wider meaning The song continues to be apposite to the chieftaincy dispute in Nandom etc. (18) Kolaperbir - slow bewa [good performance-JK]. Lit: Cat's buttocks, the mouse has caught and eaten. Meaning: Refers to a Dagara legend. The cat and mouse could not agree so set out for different parts of the forest. The area that the mouse found was good, but the cat had an area with no water. One day the cat was asleep under a tree, its mouth full of flies, when the mouse crept up and bit its buttocks. The wound festered and the cat died. Moral: don't pick on someone you think is weak. Notes: First heard in Accra in 1967. Dagaare song composed by Saale (who is now dead) in the early 1960's. The original version was much simpler than the current one and only used a few different bars on the gyil. Also adapted into Lobi by Kakraba Lobi (19) Langme nye bong kuu buole biir be wa. Lit: The Sisaala have seen dead donkey, calling the children should come. Meaning: The Sisaala eat donkey (the Dagara don't). When a donkey died in the Sisaala village the man called to the children to come and see the food. Notes: Another example of intertribal understanding - a joke at the expense of the Sisaala. Pun on the use of the word "bɛwaa". Old style of bɛwaa music, dating from the early 1950's. Composed by Sangnuo Borro from the old chief's palace who was also a butcher. This style of bɛwaa can also be used without xylophones to dance Kpaa ngmaa. + Ti lin, lin, ti lin, lin (dance); (20) Kpaa ngmaa pogmole ben Tuopare. Lit: Ugly person, free girls at Tuoper market. Meaning: If you are ugly or have something wrong with you, you can get a cheap girl to marry at Tuoper market. Notes: An old song composed by people from Guo (1 mile beyond Tuoper from Nandom). Tuoper market was one of the biggest in the area and there were always young men and women there looking for a marriage partner. It was said that there were so many girls that even if you only had 10kobo (Nigerian word for pennies) you could find a girl to marry. Kpaa ngmaa literally means "short back of the head." + Doo dem nu lo kele yaw (dance); (21) Si'lain, si'lain lile konne baapuo. Lit: Si'lain (imitating the sound of a bird) lile (bird's name) crying by the rivers ide(stream). Meaning: If you want to know the time to get up in the morning, listen for the birds to start crying. Notes: Old song from the British time. Thought to come from Jirapa and introduced to the group by Kukyayar[Kutchar] Antare - brother of Kyella Antare. + Doo dem nu lo kele yaw (dance). Lit: The man falls down and gets up again Meaning: The men should jump up and down i.e. dance vigorously. Dance song/section. Notes: Used in older style if bɛwaa in particular. This is the bass/support part often played by the male gyil. It is used to give an opportunity for slightly freer dancing etc. + Kpere bandazuzie. Lit: Shake your head, [name of the lizard]. Meaning: Stand and dance like the lizard Notes: Fast bewaa. A dance section which can be used with a number of songs e.g. Sɛbro bambala wele. The words would not be sung as the gyil player would improvise around the tune while everyone danced. Composed during 1960's. (22) Nandomme devieli dem. Lit: The Nandom people, the good dancers are coming The Nandom people, they are coming Meaning: The beautiful music and dances of the Nandom people. Notes: Composed by Bangni Dong in the early 1960's. The Sekpere group would always sing this as they approached the place where they were to perform to reassure people of their intent and announce their arrival. + Kpere bandazuzie. Lit: Shake your head, [name of the lizard]. Meaning: Stand and dance like the lizard. Notes: Fast bɛwaa. A dance section which can be used with a number of songs e.g. Sɛbro bambala wele. The words would not be sung as the gyil player would improvise around the tune while everyone danced. Composed during 1960's. (23) Be dug nye, be dug nye. Lit: The man falls down and gets up again. Meaning: The men should jump up and down i.e. dance vigorously. Dance song/section. Notes: Used in older style if bewaa in particular. This is the bass/support part often played by the male gyil. It is used to give an opportunity for slightly freer dancing etc. + Doo dem nu lo kele yaw (dance). Lit: The man falls down and gets up again. Meaning: The men should jump up and down i.e. dance vigorously. Dance song/section. Notes: Used in older style if bewaa in particular. This is the bass/support part often played by the male gyil. It is used to give an opportunity for slightly freer dancing etc. (24) Kyonkyolo nuor karakye pog. Lit: Long mouth, educated persons wives OR Long mouth, long mouth you are talking about me. Meaning: Teachers' or educated peoples' wives have long mouths i.e. they gossip a lot. Notes: Dates from around 1948. An educated woman had a husband who she thought was seeing another girl too much. The girl was part of the Nandom group and they were concerned that her actions were causing arguments and jealosy. The song was written to warn her off by pointing out that the teacher could gossip about her a lot and spoil her reputation. + Kpere bandazuzie. Meaning: Stand and dance like the lizard. Notes: Fast bɛwaa. A dance section which can be used with a number of songs e.g. Sɛbro bambala wele. The words would not be sung as the gyil player would improvise around the tune while everyone danced. Composed during 1960's. (25) Zong be nyere yee e kye nyuur pataasi. Meaning: If you are blind you should not drink alchohol. Cut your coat according to your size. Notes: Old song, 1950's. Composed by Sangnuo Borro. (26) Katarima kyen bekuone yir o paar ti leb. Katarima is a well-known woman from the chief's clan. She was flirting too much and behaving like a prostitute so the song was composed to bring her down a bit. The song is implying that she is like the last dregs of pito making (zamakuo) - anyone can have it or pour it away. Notes: Sung around early part of 1960's. Composed by the Nandom group. The essential word in this was changed for some public performanc +Tag yin be (dance). Lit: Take it away. Notes: Fast bewaa. Can go with e.g. Kuu wo, kuu woye. (27) Zong be nyere yee e kye nyuur pataasi. Lit: Blind person who cannot see, drink alchohol, even you, blind person who cannot see, drink what is in the bottle. Meaning: If you are blind you should not drink alchohol. Cut your coat according to your size. Notes: Old song, 1950's. Composed by Sangnuo Borro. + Tag yin be (dance). Lit: Take it away. Notes: Fast bewaa. Can go with e.g. Kuu wo, kuu woye. (28) Kolaperbir. Lit: Cat's buttocks, the mouse has caught and eaten. Meaning: Refers to a Dagara legend. The cat and mouse could not agree so set out for different parts of the forest. The area that the mouse found was good, but the cat had an area with no water. One day the cat was asleep under a tree, its mouth full of flies, when the mouse crept up and bit its buttocks. The wound festered and the cat died. Moral: don't pick on someone you think is weak. Notes: First heard in Accra in 1967. Dagaare song composed by Saale (who is now dead) in the early 1960's. The original version was much simpler than the current one and only used a few different bars on the gyil. Also adapted into Lobi by Kakraba Lobi (29) Puo yele yee nie kung bang. Lit: Your secret within you, nobody would know. Meaning: If you keep your secrets to yourself other people can't know them. Notes: A song from Jirapa. + Kpere bandazuzie. Lit: Shake your head, [name of the lizard]. Meaning: Stand and dance like the lizard. Notes: Fast bewaa. A dance section which can be used with a number of songs e.g. Sɛbro bambala wele. The words would not be sung as the gyil player would improvise around the tune while everyone danced. Composed during 1960's. + Pogle ter bu kang n zeli o sib (dance). Lit: The girl has something, I beg, she refused. Meaning: The girl has something I want (her favour) but when I begged she refused to give it to me. Notes: Fast bewaa. Can go with e.g. Sebro bambala wele. This is a dance rather than a song as such. The dance is for lovers and couples together. The words were added later to identify the dance and make the couples laugh. Nkrumah's time. (30) Nandomme biiri betaa yele kye benuor belangtaa. Lit: The people of Nandom don't have trouble but they are not united. Notes: Old song (Polkuu's time) + Pogle ter bu kang n zeli o sib (dance). Lit: The girl has something, I beg, she refused. Meaning: The girl has something I want (her favour) but when I begged she refused to give it to me. Notes: Fast bɛwaa. Can go with e.g. Sɛbro bambala wele. This is a dance rather than a song as such. The dance is for lovers and couples together. The words were added later to identify the dance and make the couples laugh. Nkrumah's time.. Lit: The girl has something, I beg, she refused. Meaning: The girl has something I want (her favour) but when I begged she refused to give it to me. Notes: Fast bɛwaa. Can go with e.g. Sɛbro bambala wele. This is a dance rather than a song as such. The dance is for lovers and couples together. The words were added later to identify the dance and make the couples laugh. Nkrumah's time.

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    Music for xylophones and drum.

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