Are you digging the drone of the vuvuzela as it sounds constantly during the FIFA World Cup in South Africa? I am. The long plastic horn sounds like whale songs do.
I’ve a 20+ year, and intimate relationship with the music of South Africa. (A bit of story,) but, the main thing recently is that the deep and beautiful musical culture at the bottom of Africa also is, going back (say) 25,000-100,000 years is at the bottom of music. The deep old sounds are the center of my investigation and tool-making concerned with what I’ve come to term, imaginal musicology. See Rhythm River for the skinny.
Think about the progression going back in time: modern to ancient to archaic to primitive to proto music. Proto music would be the music sounded in the settlements of earliest mankind, and in this period, not known as music per say. It’s struck me what a heavy concept it is to regard something fundamental as originating in an even more basic form and formulation stretched back to the necessary point where it was not known in any ‘second order’ terms. So, the sound world, the intentional sonic projection, the directed voice or rhythm, is not at such time–way back then!-known as music. It came before music; it is the song of before music.
Appropriate to this, my mix offered here starts with the music of the Khoi of the Kalahari, and then wanders with considerable intention through the diverse garden of South African music, and through a fairly thick slice of musical history too. There’s a streaming sampling of a Khoi woman singing to dance to.
1 Tribesmen – Kalahari 15 1:06
2 Durban High Stars – Lapha eSandlwana 02:43
3 Philip Nchipi Tabane – Lalavuka 2:36
4 Simphiwe Dana – Vukani (mix – modjadji) 5:06
5 The Dark City SDisters – Sihamba Kancane 2:15
6 Letta Mbulle – Noma Themba 3:19
7 Thekwane & the Sound Brothers – Sakubona 3:28
8 Reggie Msomi – Midnight Ska 2:25
9 Aaron Mbambo – Selishonile Ilanga 3:02
10 Eric Nomvete’s Big Five – Pondo Blues 4:13
11 Mahlathini & The Queens – Umkhovu 3:26
12 Hugh Masekela – Ha Lese Le Di Khanna 3:07
13 Amompondo – Salawena (Smith & Mighty dub remix) 5:49
14 Nganeziyamifisa No Khambalomvaleliso – Sini Lindile 3:15
15 West Nkosi – Inyoni Yami 2:17
16 Holy Spirits Vhoir – Baba Wethu Baxolele 3:10
17 Abdullah Ibrahim – Hamba Kahle 2:38
18 Robbie Jansen – Bokaap Kwela 03:58
19 Brenda Fassi – Ngiyakusaba 5:14
20 Zim Ngqawana – Anthem 9:14