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
traditional malinke music from Upper Guinea
specialist for sangban/dundunba