Chapter 2

Xylophone Music in Africa

Figure 2-1

Video: Bobobo (play play play) music performed at an Ewe funeral in Ketu, Volta Region.

Figure 2-2

Video: Belendi Saanti performing his composition Den Den Chene (Straight to the Point), in Vondiel.

Figure 2-3

Photo: Birifor pit xylophone in Tuna, Northern Region.

Pit xylophone, Tuna

Figure 2-4

Photo: Hausa musician playing a xylophone in Cameroon circa 1914. Private collection, used with permission.

Figure 2-5

Photo: Hans Holbein’s Dance of Death (1523), one of the earliest European depictions of a xylophone.

Holbein Danse Macabre

Figure 2-6

Photo: Xylophone ensemble from Cameroon circa 1914. Private collection, used with permission.

Xylophone ensemble from Cameroon circa 1914

Figure 2-7

Photo: Bɔgyil ensemble with gaŋgaa and kuur (out of frame) in Saru, Northern Region.

Figure 2-8

Video: Bɔgyil ensemble in Donyɛ, featuring several members of the Vuur family.

Figure 2-9

Photo: Vuur Sandaar applying a mirliton to a kogyil in his workshop in Donyɛ.

Vuur Sandaar applying a mirliton to a kogyil in his workshop in Donyɛ.

Figure 2-10

Audio: Approximate Western tunings of C and G fifteen key kogyile, and of kogyile made by Tijaan Dorwana and Vuur Sandaar.

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Trans: Approximate Western tunings of C and G fifteen key kogyile, and of kogyile made by Tijaan Dorwana and Vuur Sandaar.

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Figure 2-11

Averaged Tuning of the Birifor kogyil compiled by Larry Godsey (1980).

Figure 2-12

J.H. Kwabena Nketia saying a eulogy for Kakraba Lobi at Kawo Kudi park in Accra.

J. H. Kwabena Nketia remembering Kakraba Lobi

Figure 2-13

Photo: The typical grip of Birifor xylophonists.

Traditional Birifor xylophone grip

Figure 2-14

Reenactment of the Hunt at the 2009 Kobine festival in Lawra.

Figure 2-15

Photo: Bewaa group performing at the Kobine festival in Lawra, Upper West Region.

Bewaa group performing at the Kobine festival in Lawra, Upper West Region.

Figure 2-16

Photo: Detail of the Dagara kuor calabash drum, Lawra.

Detail of the Dagara kuor calabash drum, Lawra.

Figure 2-17

Photo: Detail of Birifor instruments, (clockwise) kogyil, gaŋgaa, lar, and kuur.

Figure 2-18

Audio: Audio of gaŋgaa, lar, and kuur variations.

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Trans: Transcription of gaŋgaa, lar, and kuur variations.

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Figure 2-19

Audio: Ganda Yina as a programed arrangement.

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Trans: Score of Ganda Yina.

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Figure 2-20

Audio: Saan Fo Dan Tara Ferai as a programed arrangement.

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Trans: Excerpt of Saan Fo Dan Tara Ferai.

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Figure 2-21

Audio: Saan Yi Kyena Dakpolo as a programed arrangement.

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Trans: Excerpt of Saan Yi Kyena Dakpolo.

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Figure 2-22

Photo: Detail of modern (top) and traditional (bottom) Birifor xylophone mallets.

Detail of modern (top) and traditional (bottom) Birifor xylophone mallets.

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