Posts Tagged ‘oral history’

“Stories of Gardens…” on Datscha Radio

2017/09/13

dance_of_baobab_n_carrots3_2017rcd

Stories of gardens are better than none at all…”

first broadcast on Datscha Radio Berlin, a 5-days radio-festival from a Berlin allotment garden, August 2017; produced in response to Datscha radio’s open call by radio continental drift

radio continental drift is proud and happy contributing to Datscha Radio in Berlin together with women audio/ radio producers from both sides of the Zambezi and beyond, namely Zubo Trust in Binga, Zimbabwe and Zongwe FM in Sinazongwe, Zambia; DJ Kwe joins the all-female radio-gardeners team from Canada with her music, excerpts from the inspiring Album “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga”.

Margaret Munkuli and Lucia Munenge recorded songs and stories of elders in their communities about their life at the Zambezi before the forced resettlement displacing the Tonga people for the construction of Kariba Lake. The old ladies still danced and played Chilimba at the Zambezi, as they themselves tell, and they could shout across the river to their relatives on the other side; water for gardening was no problem…

DJ Mo and DJ Petty Young took many of these recordings on-air at Zongwe FM relating voices and stories from the Binga community to the Tonga community on the Northern shore of Kariba Lake thus, joining the now divided people in radio community. Radio continental drift joins the dots in the radio piece with bits of narration in English and German to invite further listening communities along on the journey. DJ Kwe’s beats lifts our voices to danceable teachings.

You can even follow our journey to Tonga gardens on the sound maps of aporee radio where you’ll find all the original recordings. 

Enjoy the listening. And have a nice day in the garden!

Sikalenge 2017-03-07 at 23.30.33

Buy the Album “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga”

In purchasing the Album “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga”, you’ll support the healing arts of DJ Kwe and the work of women for women across the globe. From the online sales, 50% of proceed go to project work with women in Binga via Zubo Trust and Basilwizi Trust. Twalumba look! Thank you for your support!

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Dance of carrots and baobab with stories of gardens and Tonga-song-remix by DJ Kwe performed to link and honour the women of Zubo Trust in Binga, Datscha Radio in Berlin, “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga” by DJ Kwe in Canada and Apocalypso Now, a performance party hosted by Alma Tischler Wood and John Wood at Lewisham Art House in London on 25 August 2017.”

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Zubo Women Audio Collection 2016

2017/03/08

Zubo Staff and CBFs

For International Women’s Day 2017, joining women’s celebrations around the world, Zubo Trust and radio continental drift are proudly launching “Women documenting Women Stories”, an audio collection of more then 50 recordings produced by Zubo women, in particular the six community-based facilitators of Zubo’s Women Forums in Sikalenge (Lucia Munenge), Siachilaba (Julia Mumpande), Chinonge (Eunice Mwinde), Kariyangwe (Regina Munkuli), Manjolo (Margaret Munkuli) and Simatelele (Ottilia Tshuma).

Access the Archive

Zubo Docu workshop Women Stories8

The recordings are mainly in the indigenous language ChiTonga. We’ve made an effort adding introductions in English in the texts on the archive pages and sometimes the women even recorded summaries in English.

Follow our steps listening in situ on radio aporee sound maps

a Binga map in sound -Zubo Trust Binga 2017-01-02

With our recordings, we’d hope to reach out firstly to ChiTonga speaking communities, both sides of Lake Kariba or elsewhere, and especially to our sistaz, old and young. We’d wish that the present project and its audio collection may become, in time, just a beginning of local audio = listening research among the BaTonga women. There are so many stories, so much knowledge and wisdom among the women still waiting to be found, investigated and documented…

Zubo Docu workshop Women Stories6

We hope that listeners from further afield will also enjoy our recordings and, in listening, enjoy following us into our communities, culture and every-day lives. We’d wish that the publication of the collection will encourage organisations and communities, locally and internationally to engage in similar activities of collective research; and, that we may hear from you and your experiences… you are most welcome contacting us or joining the conversation on FB.

Thank you for listening!

workshop women stories

“Encouraging other women to speak out…!” Caven Mugande interviews Margaret Munkuli about her experience and how she felt making interview recordings in her own Manjolo community. Mugande is Zubo Trust Project Officer; Margaret is one of the six women facilitating local Women’s Forums who were taking part in the audio media training.

Tonga women on the way to their own media production

2017/02/07

From April – November 2016, Zubo Trust joint forces with radio continental drift/ Claudia Wegener to train Zubo staff and six community based facilitators (CBFs) in audio recording and production.

“Women documenting Women Stories” is the name of the task and the radio project with Zubo’s women.

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The playlist of recordings from the workshop days can document a bit of the journey, which we traveled together in exploring the use of audio recorders among the women Zubo is working with in rural Binga. The playlist showcases a selection of our recordings over three days together, and does so in footage recordings, including our trials to say what we mean, and our giggles.

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On the journey, which you can follow in the recordings, we practiced listening, to others, in interviews and, to ourselves; we explored storytelling and the power of detailed description on a listener; we learned how to talk with machines and how to listen carefully to their playback; we explored the tools of communication, how to encourage our counterparts to enjoy themselves in storytelling; we discussed where we come from and where we wish to go to, or not to go to… ; we practiced translation, listened to the strange sounds of foreign, African languages and, again and again, to the curious sound of ourselves as we speak to others.

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In July, the women went out in to their communities and captured the work of the Zubo’s women in the villages and the Women’s Forum in sound and voices. They also interviewed their elders, mothers and grandmothers, on BaTonga culture, tradition and history.

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The second playlist presents a selection of the recordings which Zubo women themselves made in their local communities and includes some excerpts of statements by the young media women about their experiences as citizen journalists and oral historians in their villages.

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DJ Kwe’s music flies like an acoustic beacon over our journey together with the women of Zubo Trust towards their own media work as young BaTonga business women…

I could stand for my people…” Track 5 of DJ Kwe’s “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga” features Linda Mudimba articulately voicing her wish to represent the Tonga people as a Media Woman (based on a recording by rcd in 2012 ).

women-forum-sing-n-dance

In purchasing the Album “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga”, you’ll support the healing arts of DJ Kwe and the work of women for women across the globe. From the online sales, 50% of proceed go to project work with women in Binga via Zubo Trust and Basilwizi Trust.

Twalumba loko.

Thank you for listening.

Women Team-Working

2017/01/17

Some of our first steps on the ground in Binga were to join Zubo in visiting the Women Forums in the six Wards that Zubo is working.

chinonge-womnes-forum

The women of Zubo’s Forums are doing fantastic work in their local communities. They are assisting women to come and work together as teams, often as saving and lending groups realizing income-generating projects, they pass on training of workshops for example on business skills, they debate issues affecting women and seek for solutions or for further help and, they share community work among the vulnerable members of their communities. A focus of the women’s local work consists in supporting and mentoring girl children. 

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The Women Forums and their communities are often far off the “beaten track” … as you can see when following our steps on the sound maps of aporee radio.

Songs build togetherness, move team-work, release stress, pass on messages and teachings. Every meeting begins and ends with prayer and songs.

womens-forum-chinonge-in-meeting

This is how it sounds when the women of Chinonge Women’s Forum are presenting their project work and debating local issues… listen…

At each of those local meetings with the women, we also introduced Zubo’s documentation project, “Women Documenting Women Stories”; we explained what the project involved and what we hoped to achieve with it. Listen to such a presentation at Sikalenge.

In one of our radio shows, at Zongwe FM, across the lake in Sinazongwe Zambia, we introduce the work of Zubo’s Women Forums. Here you can find the playlist of our radio show, a sampler of our recordings with the Women Forums.

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ZUBO Trust is a Women’s Organisation based in Binga working with and for the rural women of the Zambezi valley in Zimbabwe since 2009. Zubo has become widely recognized for its successful work empowering the rural women in income-generating projects, which utilize the natural resources of the remote area such as Fish, Kapenta, Ilala, Baobab or Moringa. In 2012 Zubo made national and international headlines by launching the first Women Fishery Project on the Kariba Lake.

All Female Production Team Shines on International Women’s Day

2016/03/08

 

 

In Celebration of Women and their Creative Contribution to Society! 

the forthcoming Album is staring young BaTonga Women in the Vocals. 

Lets dance together, join hands across the globe and share in to the wisdom of indigenous knowledge!

 

Crystal DJ Kwe Favel

Crystal DJ Kwe Favel of Wax Warriors Record Label has partnered up with Claudia Wegener of Radio Continental Drift to release “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga” Electronic Drum Music Album this March 31, 2016.

Can you name an album completely produced from start to finish by women? In most cases, “no!” Not only have the radio samples have been recorded, collected and produced by Claudia, but DJ Kwe has also recorded, produced, engineered and mastered the entire album.

These female electronica artists even tear down international barriers as Ms. Favel is located in Canada and Claudia currently resides in Germany. When you combine both their portfolios, they have over 30 years of experience combined overachieving in a male-dominated technology industry. Their album promises to introduce another method to “preserve Oral Traditions, Ancient Languages and Indigenous Teachings through Aboriginal Electronica On The Rise.

Stay tunes as you watch history in the making, or…

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A luggage of equipment for women in Binga

2016/03/01

luggage of equipment for Zubo copy

Can you help add some funds to this equipment…? We are still lacking resources for the women’s subsistence during the multimedia training. The task is for the women to learn documenting their own work, daily live and culture of the Tonga people, and ultimately, to promote and market their local products, such as Tonga baskets, dried fish, soap from Jatropha oil or Baobab Juice.

We are currently running a fund-raiser in Germany supported by FUgE and Welthaus Bielefeld. Find the call-out (in German), further information and contact here: Spendenaufruf Zubo Trust Zimbabwe.

The project and its background:

Over the past five year, the local women’s organisation Zubo Trust has established successful economic empowerment projects securing the livelihood and self-reliance of women in rural Binga, Northern Zimbabwe. However, hardly anything of all this is known to outsiders. The BaTonga have been a marginalised community for long and Binga is far away from the country’s urban centres like Bulawayo and Harare.

Radio continental drift is soon joining the women of Zubo Trust in Binga as a “multimedia volunteer”. The media project with the women has been in the planning for more than a year. Recently, funds for some equipment could be procured from the German Boeckler Foundation/ Solidarity FundNow, subsistence of the women is our big worry – even more so, since Binga is badly effected by the current drought in Southern Africa.

All incoming funds from our call-out will be used to reimburse the women who participate in the media project and to help with the subsistence of those who wish to learn taking documentation and promotion in to their own hands for the benefit of the local community.

Here, you can listen to a podcast produced by African Women in Germany, which tells about the Tonga people and the women of Zubo Trust.

With your support, the women in Binga will soon be able producing their own podcasts and showcase their work and products on their website. Keep in touch with them here: http://www.zubo.org Thanks for listening and for your support!

Twalumba! from the women in Binga!

Radio continental drift

the new ZUBO

 

Remixes to “The Women of the Great River”

2015/12/31

 

As remix artists and storytellers, we join hands with our sista artists and storytellers elsewhere, in dedication to the art of listening and, to a shared vision of opening new resonance-space for yet unheard voices and communities in the so called “global information age”.  

Below on this blog, you’ll find eight chapters of thematic introductions to all the 18 remix contribution the “the Women of the Great River”: from “Tonga Anthem in Remix” to “Audio Journey through Binga”. Alternatively, you can brows for names of artists and related footage recordings here.

 

Tonga Anthem in remix

 

The playlist of all audio remixes to “The Women of the Great River” can be downloaded here [16 mp3 files, 108MB]

Women Empowerment

 

Audio/ Radio/ Arts

for consciousness building among global listeners.

 

Album 5

 

We received 18 contributions by 16 artists of 11 countries; 15 sonic remixes by 14 contributors; two further contributors responded in a visual remix. A warm thank-you to all the contributing artists.

 

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On invitation of Athens composer, Anna Stereopoulou, we were partnering on this journey with CIRCE The Black Cut project. The resulting CIRCE Family Album VOX can be found now, for free download, HERE.

 

Colonial divide-and-rule stories in remix

 

Remix to VOX by LAPKAT aka DJ and Radio Maker Lisa Greenaway

 

Album 3

 

 

The fire of listening unites!

 

 

Passing on stories in remix

0 album 2

Tonga Anthem… in remix

2015/12/18

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“…The River is for the Tonga people.

The river has fish and crocodiles…  

Our ancestors are ‘crying’…”

 

The above lines came via a quick text message from Michito Veronika, Zubo Trust’s communications officer, currently in the Netherlands, completing her MA dissertation. I had sent her the link to a recording asking whether the song following the Zimbabwe National Anthem was perhaps a kind of Tonga Anthem. “…oooh very nice. you have just made me miss home…,” Michito wrote and added the lines above in translation.

Listen to the recording here:

 

Award ceremony at Damba Primary School 2012

 

“The Tonga lost their land with the coming of Kariba but they have managed to retain much of their rich cultural heritage…”

Keith Goddard writes in his article “one man one note” (2005)

 

The recording of the Tonga Anthem was made in 2012, when I accompanied members of Basilwizi Trust  to an award ceremony at Damba Primary School. Damba is a tiny village, off the main road, in the bush-land near Manjolo.

 

All Africa Sound Map - Damba Primary

 

Together with Sihle Ndlovu, we recorded a number of interviews with women, in English and in ChiTonga and documented almost the entire award ceremony in Damba with recordings. Some clips from that day’s interviews are included in the call-out playlist such as by the young reserve teacher Florence Munsaka, and a Tonga song by Mary Munsaka, mother of one of the pupils.

Some soundscape recordings from the award ceremony are connected to the All Africa Sound Map like this Welcome Song by the Pupils of Damba to the arriving guests

 

Anthem - Damba ceremony

 

One of our contributors, the DJ Audio Storyteller, Crystal DJ Kwe Favel deeply identified with the stories, songs, sounds and voices she heard from the “The Women of the Great River”. Starting with the call-out playlist, DJ Kwe got on a journey of listening across many of the footage recordings from radio continental drift’s 2012 visit to Binga… a journey of listening which is still continuing as we speak and, will lead, so DJ Kwe, to an entire Album of her music dedicated to the Voices of Binga she heard…

The first track of her forthcoming Album however, Crystal DJ Kwe Favel is releasing already, here and now, contributing it as free-for download to “The Women of the Great River” call-out and CIRCE The Black Cut project/ Family Album. In her remix-contribution, DJ Kwe included two of the soundscape recordings of the Damba Award Ceremony, the Welcome Song of the Damba Pupils to arriving guests and, the BaTonga Anthem.

DJ Kwe (pronounced DJ Kway – means DJ Woman) is an Aboriginal Woman from the Cree & Metis Nation of Squamish, British Columbia, Canada.

 

 

Describing the samples used in the track, DJ Kwe writes:

  • Flutes – Indigenous to Native Canada/Turtle Island – Voices of our People – Sharing the Love
  • Frogs – symbol of transformation – recorded here on Native land. Frogs are Elders. Frogs live the balance between two worlds that often collide.
  • Damba Primary School Students – Welcome/Greeting Song – Special Tonga Anthem
  • Indigenous Girl Trill – Call for audio warriors to unite.
  • Tribal Drums – A common journey we share beyond the physical land.
  • House Beats – Electronica – a connection, a platform, a foundation to greet the world.
  • Synths – Inspire the world, together! Represents strength and power of positivity through nations across Mother Earth.

 

Damba ceremony gathering2

 

DJ Kwe writes about her contribution and motivation of her music:

“Our Native community is resilient; we have overcome slavery, displacement and documented genocide. It is in our blood to share our stories and oral tradition through audio. That is why it’s very important to introduce digital audio storytelling as another method to preserve our traditional stories and oral traditions. As we rebuild our family structures and heal from the generations of abuse, we are reconnecting through the use of modern tools. It is my goal to repair the hearts of my community through my music and writing. This is a motivational movement through electronica to reach for the stars, regardless of race.”

 

Announcement of DJ Kwe's forthcoming Album dedicated to Voices of Binga

 

The Album will be released on DJ Kwe’s own record label, Wax-Warriors-Records, in March 2016.

 

Siachilaba Baobab

 

“The People of the Great River”: The BaTonga are descendants of those who were forcefully removed from their fertile land at the Zambezi by the British Colonial Government in the 1950s. They had to escape into the arid, higher regions both sides of the Zambezi valley where agriculture is almost impossible. The land of their ancestors is now at the bottom of the Kariba Lake. Even after independence, water and electricity from the dam bypasse them serving others in the country. “Having lost everything, their culture survives strongly as a driving force of self-assertion, resilience and development.”

For information please also see some of the related websites:

Zubo TrustBasilwizi TrustMulongaKunzwana TrustTonga OnAirAustrian Zimbabwe Friendship Association

Women Empowerment… in Binga remix

2015/12/15

… did you ask yourself about women’s liberation in the rural communities of Binga in Zimbabwe…?

The contributions by Sirpa Jokinen, audio artist from Finland, and by Yes Afrika Women’s Forum to “The Women of the Great River” call-out tell us about it – based on the stories brought to us by Rosemary Cumanzala, director of the women’s organisation Zubo Trust in Binga.

 

the new ZUBO

 

“…it’s taboo! I can’t allow my wife to be in the public…”

Zubo Trust began to work with the women of the community in conversational meetings with the husbands, sensitizing the men for women’s issues, that was the aim.

“…but why are the women not speaking…?”

once first steps were done and the women were attending the meetings, Zubo continued gentle inquiring in to the power structures that be…

“…Women Issues are women’s issues! There is no way a man can pretend to be a woman…!”

even the men were coming to this solution, Rosemary tells us in the recordings.

 

Rosemary at Hamm station

 

It is this story – clip10 of the call-out playlist – which Sirpa Jokinen embeds in a resonant scenario with her remix. Listen to Sirpa’s beautiful accentuation of Rosemary’s story of women’s empowerment in Binga:

 

 

Today many women in Zubo Trust’s economic empowerment projects are able to stand on their own feet, fend for themselves and their families.

“…the women of the Kapenta project are even employers of men…”

“…in some families, women became the breadwinners; the husbands are taking care of the children…”

 

the "old" ZUBO - photo: Zubo Trust

 

So goes the continuation of Rosemary’s story documented in the footage recordings of the Yes Afrika Women’s Forum.

Podcast 5, contributed by Yes Afrika Women’s Forum, features Rosemary’s story of women empowerment in Binga and places it in a triple frame: Rosemary’s conversation and exchange of experiences with members of Yes Afrika Women’s Forum in Germany in June 2015; the story of Zubo’s all-women-fishery project told by Rosemary’s junior colleague in Binga, Abbigal Muleya (recorded in Nov.2012); and, the history of the BaTonga’s displacement from the river (using clips 2, 3, 5, 10, 12, 14 and 56 of the call-out playlist).

 

 

Craft Centre - women empowerment

 

ZUBO Trust is a women-run organization working with the rural women of the Zambezi valley in Zimbabwe since 2009. Offices are in Binga and Bulawayo. Zubo Trust has accomplished well-recognized work in organizing the rural women, establishing producer collectives, securing women’s lively-hoods, and boosting their independence and self-esteem. One of Zubo’s pioneering initiatives is an all-women fishery project. Further projects include organic agriculture, developing cosmetic products and, the local crafts, especially basket weaving.

 

 

Abbigal Muleya talks about the work of Zubo Trust with the women in Binga to radio continental drift/ claudia wegener, in a recording from 2012 in Binga outside Basilwizi Office.

 

office Bailwisi - Kariba Lake

 

 

Mothers of Education and Custodians of Culture

2015/12/09

 

…celebrated in sonic remix by the vocalist-lyricist-composer Ms. Soli Tii in Berlin, artists/ composer Joseph Ba aka BroodingSideofMadness and the music/ poetry duo Asymmetroi Faroi in Greece and, in visual remix by the painter, researcher and art teacher Agness Buya Yombwe, based in Livingstone, Zambia.

 

Album 5

 

These contributions celebrate the important social roles of mothers passing on indigenous culture and knowledge to their children and grandchildren and, ensuring with their hard daily work, often in subsistence farming, a basic education for their children.

 

 

This stands against the dark background of colonialism – of yesterday and today – leaving impoverished communities where education of girl children became a luxury and child marriages are frequent. Additionally, the histories of colonial interference and missionary work on the continent, often left an imprint of patriarchal social structures on post-independent nations; where possibly before, in matrilineal tribes of Southern Africa, women’s rights and economic independence were safeguarded in indigenous tradition.

 

Linda_andSichle_BaslwiziOffice_BingaNov12_rcd

 

The remixes of Joseph Ba and Assymetroi Faroi lend resonance to Linda Mudimba’s “praise song” for her Mum. Linda Mudimba is a student of African languages and Communication at Lupane State University, Zimbabwe (or perhaps she is already working as a journalist writing in ChiTonga – as was her vision…); at the time of the recordings Linda was one of the National Volunteers with Basilwizi Trust in Binga.

 

 

 

From the call-out playlist, Ms. Soli Tii has chosen the voices of two women talking of their mother and grandmother and, something like the love and duty to the culture they inherited through their female elders… Esnart Mweemba (Zambia) talks about her mother’s special art of basket weaving; Simudenda Bertha (Zimbabwe) recounts learning the art of bead-making from her grandmother, now passing it on to her children; she adds an appeal to the Tonga people to value and appreciate their culture. The two tracks could be seen to represent the BaTonga both sides of the Zambezi, one people today separated by the man-made lake of Kariba.

 

 

Ms. Soli Tii herself has started a musical women’s project called the “World Women’s Project”, which as she writes on the website was inspired by “The Women of the Great River”; and is dedicated to the memory of her late mother.

 

red beads on the bed, painting from the Taboo series by Agness Buya Yombwe 2015


I’m delighted presenting the first contribution of an artist from the region to “The Women of the Great River” call-out, Agness Buya Yombwe in Livingstone Zambia. Agness’ paintings are a visual remix to clip 51 in the playlist, a recording in which Luyando and her aunt Janet talk about female initiation rights among the Tonga people in front of related artifacts at the BaTonga Museum in Binga. Here, Janet relates the women’s custom of placing red beads (which she’s usually wearing) on the bed, indicating to her husband that she’s in her menstrual cycle.

A warm thank you to ‪Anna Stereopoulou who created a beautiful page hosting ‪Agness Buya Yombwe art works and, the many stories around the images and source recordings.

In clip 54 of the Call-out playlist, you can hear Agness Buya Yombwe herself talking about her experience of listening to the recordings with Janet and Luyando in Binga.  It was there and then that Agness “promised” making a painting about what she had heard from Janet. 

 

Mbusa teachings - photo Agness Buya Yombwe

 

I played the Binga recordings to Agness, knowing her interest and research about indigenous cultures, and the “Mbusa” (female initiation rights) among the Bemba people in particular. The above photo shows the Mbusa teachings in process at Wayi Wayi Gallery’s permanent Mbusa installation room.

A Visual Artist, designer and art teacher from Lusaka, Agness founded and runs Wayi Wayi Art Studio & Gallery with her husband, the painter Laurence Yombwe, in Livingstone, Zambia.

 

Wayi Wayi on Aporee Maps


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