post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Discuss traditional rhythms, singing etc

post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby Samsuke » Wed Mar 07, 2012 12:13 am

Greetings from Japan.

I want to hear your opinion. After one has learned Dunungbe, Bada and Konowoulen, which I think are most important of all dunun rhythms, what should be the next, regardless of difficulty?

I also want to see if there is a consensus on this issue.

Thank you!

Sam
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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby dleufer » Wed Mar 07, 2012 4:04 am

The rhythms I heard most often at dununba fetes in Gberedu (after the ones you mention) were Demunsoni Kelen and Takosaba. Bando Djeli too.
I looooooooooove Bolokonondo and because it's very different it could be a nice one to learn.
I don't think any of them are more important than others. Try listening to them and see which one you really like the sound of. If you really like a rhythm it will motivate you to learn it.
There is so much stuff in Gbada (Bada) it's a great one to spend a lot of time on. There is Gbada Ney (little Gbada) which is played usually after Kon (Dunungbe) to change into another rhythm. Then there is Gbada (the normal one) and finally Gbada La Ji (not sure of spelling). Gbada La Ji is a little selection of phrases which is always played to finish a dununba fete. Not sure where you can learn that though. I might post some recordings. I was thinking about suggesting Gbada for the next rhythm of the month.
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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby Dugafola » Wed Mar 07, 2012 5:00 pm

dleufer wrote:The rhythms I heard most often at dununba fetes in Gberedu (after the ones you mention) were Demunsoni Kelen and Takosaba. Bando Djeli too.
I looooooooooove Bolokonondo and because it's very different it could be a nice one to learn.
I don't think any of them are more important than others. Try listening to them and see which one you really like the sound of. If you really like a rhythm it will motivate you to learn it.


i second this. find one you like and work on it. other ones to consider: kurabadon, dji(konowulen2), gbereduka(baro).

dleufer wrote:There is so much stuff in Gbada (Bada) it's a great one to spend a lot of time on. There is Gbada Ney (little Gbada) which is played usually after Kon (Dunungbe) to change into another rhythm. Then there is Gbada (the normal one) and finally Gbada La Ji (not sure of spelling). Gbada La Ji is a little selection of phrases which is always played to finish a dununba fete. Not sure where you can learn that though. I might post some recordings. I was thinking about suggesting Gbada for the next rhythm of the month.


badajaji is on a bunch of CDs. off the top of my head:
mansa camio et sofoli - an bada sofoli
famoudou konate - rhythm der malinke
mansa camion et tolonba
billy konate - siyara maden mansa
fk - malinke rhythms and songs volume 1 or 2

also, there's a lot of specific dununba phrases and corresponding djembe phrases that are played together to mark the dance.

bada is great...too often it's glazed over as a transition to another rhythm or to end a string of rhythms. most of the time people don't know that bada can be one of the longest played dununba rhythms at a fete in upper guinea.
should i shave my moustache?
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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby davidognomo » Wed Mar 07, 2012 6:06 pm

dleufer wrote: I was thinking about suggesting Gbada for the next rhythm of the month.


Please do. You can count on my vote.

Far from having the knowledge and experience of these two, I can second dleufer on the love for bolokonondo - and its dance. And Bando Djeli is one of my favourites.
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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby Samsuke » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:17 am

Thank you for your advice, friends!

Many people may agree that Dunungbe is the most important of all dunun rhythms and then come Bada and Konowoulen. If we all agree on that point, do we also have "the definite second most important" ?

That was what I meant when I said "consensus". It seems it varies according to person to person?
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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby dleufer » Thu Mar 08, 2012 11:07 am

I wouldn't say that Gbada and Konowulen are the next most important. I have seen numerous fetes in the village where they didn't even play Konowulen. I guess you could say Gbada and Kon (dunungbe) are the most important because they are the only two rhythms which will definitely appear in a fete (as far as I understand it). It always starts with Kon and always finishes with Gbada (in my experience). What comes in between is up to the sangban player (or someone who shouts at him to tell him what to play).
Like I said, the most common rhythms for in between (in my experience) are Demunsoni Kelen, Konowulen and Takosaba. Also likely to come up are Kontempudoo (no idea of spelling), Bolokonondo, Gbereduka, Bando Djeli.
There are other dununba rhythms which are not played in the same context like Sankaramba. I guess here we're talking about rhythms played for when the Barati dance in a "normal" dununba fete.

I don't think it's useful to start ranking them as the most and least important. It depends on what you want to learn them for.

If you want to learn them because your goal is to be able to play sangban/dununba in a traditional fete then it could make sense to classify the rhythms as more or less important depending on how frequently they occur in fetes.

If you want to learn them to perform on stage then just listen to them and pick whichever ones you like the sound of.

If you want to learn say 3 or 4 dununba rhythms in order to get an idea of the different bell patterns, dununba variations, solo techniques and general feeling then yes I would say that Kon is the most important. It give you a way into learning all the others. After that Gbada is quite different in feeling so it's another good one to begin with.

When I was in Baro I learned them in this order:
Kon
Bando Djeli
Gbereduka
Takosaba
Gbada
Bolokonondo (I already knew it, just variations etc)
Kononwulen (same as above)
Demunsoni Kelen
Kontempudoo
N'Fakaba
Sankaramba

Once you learn a few it starts to get much easier to learn them. Bando and Kon took aaaaaaages and then after that it went more quickly. It also makes it easy to learn other rhythms like Mamaya, Konden, Konkoba (Baro version).
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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby Paul » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:42 pm

Damn Leufer, sounds like you been working hard.. Fair play.
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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby Daniel Preissler » Thu Mar 08, 2012 9:26 pm

great posting Daniel!

according to my experiences I have a quite clear opinion concerning importance/frequency of the dundunba rythms .
1) gbada
2) dundungbè/kon (we could discuss here: maybe the best solution is to put gbada and dundungbè both on pole position, it really depends on which aspect you're looking at)
3) denmusoni
4) (since the last two years) könöwulen
5) takosaba & bando & ... here discussion begins

very often you will have fêtes starting with kon/denmusoni/gbada
> break > bando or takosaba or whatever (sometimes with gbada in the end), than again the firs three. the last 2 or 3 years I saw it more and more often that könöwulen was played between denmusoni and gbada. Rarely they could even leave out kon in the beginning (I saw this in fissadou).

This is correct concerning dundunba fêtes.
If we consider marriages and other (women) fêtes as well, könöwulen becomes more important and could be played more often in total than e.g. denmusoni - könöwulen is more or less the only dundunba rhythm that is played for other festivities ("because the women like to sing it's songs" is a response that I remember - but even without singing, drummers like to play this rhythm, if a single man passes at a "women's" fête and wants to dance for a minute).

Daniel, the Gbadani (little Gbada) thing is a Baro(or Gberedu) phenomenon. It might be a new developement (FK used it in a close way, too: to end the whole thing. Josh mentioned this above.).

Greetings, d
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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby Daniel Preissler » Thu Mar 08, 2012 9:30 pm

so, sam, to answer your question: it's denmusonin!
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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby Samsuke » Fri Mar 09, 2012 12:00 am

Thank you guys for your guidance. I feel happy and grateful to you cause this thread has been very enlighting to me. Many of you know and have seen what I don't know. I would be glad if more opinions and info come out.

My teachers include Nansady, Billy Nankouma and Solo Keita. I have been concentrating on Denabo for several years under them and I feel like some dununba rhythms now. I have played Dunungbe, Bada and Konowoulen for some years and I was wondering what should be the next in terms of tradition. I want to play these rhythms in succession for dance classes.

I think it's interesting that Dunungbe is often refered to as "the most important", cause something like that rarely happens on other group of rhythms. Right? Do we say "Manjani is more important than Soli and Balakulandjan"? I don't think so.

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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby dleufer » Fri Mar 09, 2012 12:08 am

Samsuke wrote:I think it's interesting that Dunungbe is often refered to as "the most important", cause something like that rarely happens on other group of rhythms. Right? Do we say "Manjani is more important than Soli and Balakulandjan"? I don't think so.
Sam


I explained what I mean by "most important". It is the most important one to learn (or along with Gbada, one of the two most important) IF you want to play sangban/dununba at a dununba fete in a village. In general terms it is no more important than any other rhythm. Importance has to be defined in terms of your goal. If your dancers want to dance Gbereduka for your classes then Gbereduka is important for you to learn.
Mansa Camio says that he believes all the rhythms derive from Kon/Dunungbe. This is highly debatable but what I would say is that if you learn Kon/Dunungbe inside out you have a very good foundation for learning all the dununba rhythms, soli, den/mendiani, mamaya, konden etc. These rhythms have a lot in common. It could equally be said however that if you learn Konden inside out you will have a good base to learn those rhythms also.

Like I've already said, I don't think it's useful to start calling rhythms more or less important unless you clearly define the meaning and context of "importance"
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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby Daniel Preissler » Fri Mar 09, 2012 12:29 am

Do we say "Manjani is more important than Soli and Balakulandjan"? I don't think so.


HALT! ;-)

this is nothing to be compared, because dundunba rhythms are played for - well - dundunba fêtes AND are (mostly) musically close.

the three rhythms you mentioned are not part of one group, nevermind how you will define "group" here (there are several possibilities).

But we can say that Mendyani is less important than the other two rhythms. d;-)

dundungbè is the "simple" dundun(ba) rhythm, it means white, pure, simple dundunba, so without any (newer, stranger or more complex???) variations. At the same time it is one of the hardest rhythms to play, because of the sangban/djembé/dance connection. And it has (in Baro and Kumana) some extra part that is played inside. So: simple basic part, but a lot of things can happen. Takosaba is the opposite...

btw Daniel, Soli is not close to the other rhythms you mentioned, especially not to dundunbas (i wrote about this special thing several times). But in Baro Konden and Kon (dundungbè) are very very close. There is a kind of Baro style that makes rhythms sound alike which are quite different in other villages: xx xx xx xx xx xx xx xx as long as possible and nearly no closed strokes (or no closed strokes for a long time at least).
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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby Samsuke » Sun Mar 11, 2012 5:12 am

Thank you again for your guidance.

I'm wondering why no one mentions Donaba nor Kadan.
Is there any reason?

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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby Daniel Preissler » Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:57 pm

well, you asked for the most important ones.

I'm still not sure about Kadan as a rhythm on it's own.
And donaba is just the disc name, it's Sankaranba (the Sangbarala Sankaranba is quiet close to Kadan, btw).
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Re: post dunungbe-bada-konowoulen

Postby Daniel Preissler » Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:04 pm

oh yes,
Daniel, I would love to hear/read which sankaranba you learnt in Baro!!
Greets
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