nice discussion & thanks for sharing the lyrics of kuku - de maoka, right?
does anyone have access to a native speaker of malinke? i am trying to figure out what the appropriate spelling and word by word meaning for 'basa ti mbara ba' could be (that is to say, 'the head of the gecko', used to refer to the call of the dunun rhythms). unfortunately, my sources never said anything about the spelling (or the word by word meaning).
by looking at dictionaries, i can see that 'basa' is lizard, 'ti' indicates possession, like our preposition 'of' and then i am somewhat lost.
i cannot find 'mbara ba'. the most meaningful thing i come up with is that 'bara' is gourd/calabash. i could understand that for animals they may use calabash to mean head (particularly of an animal).... but it is a little bit odd. does anybody know anything about the meaning of 'mbara ba'?
of course, there might be some small variations, the 'm' might not necessarily be there or there might be variation with the exact sound that the 'r' corresponds to, but I could not find anything in dictionaries, even when allowing for such flexibility. any thoughts anyone?
thanks a lot for any help