Discuss traditional rhythms, singing etc
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By Mikeleza
#21474
On Mansa Camio's album, "AN BADA SOFOLI" there is a rhythm called "Bara".

Usually I would associate this sangban pattern as being a variation during echaufment or following the "cross rhythm" dance step but it's interesting to see here that it seems to be traditionally a rhythm that exists in it's own right.

Does any one have information or notation about this rhythm?
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By michi
#21475
In addition to "An Bada Sofoli", have several CDs with Bara:
  • Various Artists, "The Art Of Jenbe Drumming: The Mali Tradition Vol. 2", track 8
  • Abdoulaye Diakite, "Tambacounda Dunun Ni Don", track 3
  • Billy Nankouma Konaté, "Saboule Moyala N'wolobalou Kobarika", track 4
  • Youssouf Drama, "Mali Kan - Bonkolo", track 1
Daniel Genton's instructional "Dembefola" contains two versions, as does "Djemberhythmen Aus Mali", by Stephan Rigert and Drissa Kone.

"Bara" is the name of the open space in the village where ceremonies and festivals take place. I believe that the rhythm is played after the harvest, when all the hard work is out of the way and it's time to party. Part of preparing for the festivities is to clean up the Bara, getting rid of any debris and generally tidying things up. Bara is played during the clean-up work.

Cheers,

Michi.
User avatar
By Mikeleza
#21476
Great! Thanks for the tip... time to buy some more cd's ...??!
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By Djembe-nerd
#21478
Michi,

As I remember from Mamady's workshop (correct me if I am mixing this with something else):

" Bara is usually a place with a big tree and people gather around it. It is also a place for people to gather and talk in the evenings".
User avatar
By Mikeleza
#21481
I think the Mansa Camio cd said that Bara are the strong men aged between 35 and 40?
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By Dugafola
#21483
michi wrote:In addition to "An Bada Sofoli", have several CDs with Bara:
  • Various Artists, "The Art Of Jenbe Drumming: The Mali Tradition Vol. 2", track 8
  • Abdoulaye Diakite, "Tambacounda Dunun Ni Don", track 3
  • Billy Nankouma Konaté, "Saboule Moyala N'wolobalou Kobarika", track 4
  • Youssouf Drama, "Mali Kan - Bonkolo", track 1
Daniel Genton's instructional "Dembefola" contains two versions, as does "Djemberhythmen Aus Mali", by Stephan Rigert and Drissa Kone.

"Bara" is the name of the open space in the village where ceremonies and festivals take place. I believe that the rhythm is played after the harvest, when all the hard work is out of the way and it's time to party. Part of preparing for the festivities is to clean up the Bara, getting rid of any debris and generally tidying things up. Bara is played during the clean-up work.

Cheers,

Michi.
the above listed are definitely not the same as the rhythm in question, Bada(Bara).

i'm sure AfoBA will chime in shortly...

in a traditional context, what i've seen is that bada can end a dununba fete or at least a series of dununba rhythms before ending the rhythm completely and then starting back up with dununbe.

individuals may dance...there can be lots of high flying moves. there's also a few collective movements that a group may dance together where the dununba phrase changes to mark these steps.

if i play the dununba for bada, i like to leave some space in the phrasing instead of just filling in a bunch of upbeat shuffles. i'll toss in the above mentioned phrase for flavor.
User avatar
By michi
#21488
the above listed are definitely not the same as the rhythm in question, Bada(Bara).
Entirely possible. I did a search through my iTunes library to fish these out. There is probably more than one rhythm with that name.

Cheers,

Michi.
User avatar
By Dugafola
#21490
michi wrote:
the above listed are definitely not the same as the rhythm in question, Bada(Bara).
Entirely possible. I did a search through my iTunes library to fish these out. There is probably more than one rhythm with that name.

Cheers,

Michi.
Bara is also a big Malian rhythm recorded by the likes of Soungalo, drissa kone etc...which is the same as the one you have in your list Michi...

the dunun rhythm, bada, is a whole other beast.
User avatar
By michi
#21492
Yes, I just had another listen, and I agree. The Mansa Camio recording is definitely a dundunba, completely different from the Malian Bara.

BTW, there is also a composition of Mamady's called "Bara", different yet again.

Cheers,

Michi.
User avatar
By Mikeleza
#21497
Dugafola wrote: the above listed are definitely not the same as the rhythm in question, Bada(Bara).

i'm sure AfoBA will chime in shortly...

in a traditional context, what i've seen is that bada can end a dununba fete or at least a series of dununba rhythms before ending the rhythm completely and then starting back up with dununbe.

individuals may dance...there can be lots of high flying moves. there's also a few collective movements that a group may dance together where the dununba phrase changes to mark these steps.

if i play the dununba for bada, i like to leave some space in the phrasing instead of just filling in a bunch of upbeat shuffles. i'll toss in the above mentioned phrase for flavor.
Ahah!!! Very interesting! :D

I like the idea of finishing a series of dununbas with this rhythm... hmmm.... 8)

What is the (above mentioned) dununba pattern that you are referring to Dugafola?
By Daniel Preissler
#21498
Hello everyone,

yes, Gbada or Bada or Bara is a musical piece on it's own, one of the most important dundunba pieces. Very often it is just taught as a break, an intermission to change rhythms or to acc. a special dance step (as it's played in ballets and for modern CKY dundunba fêtes).
Concerning the spelling, I'm not sure: it surely derivate from the name for the public place of a village, but I think they pronounce it differently now. I usually write "gbada" but "bara" and "barati" - vocal-d-vocal ist very often pronounced (nearly or completely) like vocal-r-vokal. Example: Acc. to M. Friedländer, the maninka name of Kouroussa is Kodosa and the official spelling of n'körökè (my older brother) is n(')ködökè. On the "An bada Soföli" disc, they did it both ways: they write "an bada" and "koudabadon", but "Bara" (the title for Könöwulen, "Kondé-oulen" is another adventure).

Nice point of Josh's concerning the importance of the musical piece we're talking about:
Dugafola wrote:bada can end a dununba fete or at least a series of dununba rhythms before ending the rhythm completely and then starting back up with dununbe.
Very often they start with another piece after one "break down" with Gbada (Bando, Takosaba,...).

You will find a Gbada recording with Mansa on our own disc ("baradöta" - getting the bara, going to the bara and starting the fête) and every disc from Baro (Mansa) where dundunbas are played. Here's a little list from my collegue Marcus' site: http://www.sofoli.de/shop_cd.htm

Mike, concerning your remark:
the Mansa Camio cd said that Bara are the strong men aged between 35 and 40?
They are called the barati - the chiefs or owners of the central or public place in a village (the so called first generation). We've had discussions about this. The barati in Baro are probably all over 40. And they have a very complex generation's system in Baro (with "half" or "semi" generations in between). A friend from there told me recently that they are most probably going to shorten the generation's period (I mean, they will change more often, maybe every 2 or 3 yeas even, because if they don't, people who are 20 years at the moment will be over 50 when they are finally barati).

Greetings, Daniel
User avatar
By bops
#21512
Dugafola wrote:Bara is also a big Malian rhythm recorded by the likes of Soungalo, drissa kone etc...which is the same as the one you have in your list Michi...

the dunun rhythm, bada, is a whole other beast.
Agreed... two very different rhythms, same name.

The Malian Bara rhythm is also known as Kote, which comes from Segou region. It's part of Koteba, like Tansole. It was originally played on Bonkolo and ... you guessed it, the Bara drum. That's why the rhythm is also called Bara. The Bara is a large kettle drum worn around the waist and played with the palms of the hands.

What gets confusing is the fact that there are many different meanings and applications of the term Bara. There is a calabash drum, played in Bobo and Senufo regions, which is also called bara. Like others have said, it can mean circle or dance space. If you put the emphasis on the first syllable, it means work. Don't forget the Bari, which is different but also from Segou.

Kote (Bara) can also be played on jembe and dunun.

Here is a picture of a Bonkolo drum, played with a thin stick or reed in one hand:
(right-click and choose View Image...)
DSC00246.JPG
Bonkolo
DSC00246.JPG (3.1 MiB) Viewed 4920 times
And here's a Bara drum, played with two hands:
DSC00247.JPG
Bara
DSC00247.JPG (3.83 MiB) Viewed 4920 times
By Daniel Preissler
#21516
yes, thank you for these nice photos, Bops!