Posts Tagged ‘Zambia’

World Radio Day 2019

2019/02/13

Both sides of the Zambezi: A playlist of on-air excerpts 2018

 

6 Womens Exchange Visit to Binga

Hallo Listeners !

Radio-bridging across the Zambezi, between Zambia and Zimbabwe was a focus of activities on the ground 2018. Sharing broadcast excerpts from the Zambezi Valley for World Radio Day 2019, we dream of radio-bridges to listeners around the world…

We” that is the various radio-makers at Sinazongwe Community Radio Station aka ZongweFM; it’s also Mutinta Mukuwa (the white, out-one-out) aka claudia who joint Zongwe team between June and December 2018 for weekly workshops, international projects, and of course many live broadcasts. “We” may also include the many studio guests, we were honored to host, who spoke to us in person or, through recordings and remixes.

We’d like to invite you to go on a journey with ZongweFM Live for two hours to the rural areas North and South of the Zambezi; you’ll hear about a community fundraising concert for Zongwe FM, the local launch of the Radio-Bridge Compilation, exchange visits of women across Lake Kariba, between Sinazongwe and Binga, visitors from Europa, Basimbi Radio, radio making with/ by/ for girls – and many many other things between the lines…

Thank you for listening!

radio continental drift

2 Zubo Radio

01. Nosiko’s Concert Jingle – “You are welcome…!!” (02:09’) A jingle for the Radio-Bridge Concert, a community fundraising effort for Zongwe FM. The jingle is a international sonic co-production by Zongwe DJ Nosiko and Mukuwa Mutinta with music from the Radio-Bridge Compilation “Path of Awareness” by Italian composer Valerio Orlandini, vocals by Zubo Trust’s Donor Ncube.

02. Reports from Binga: Women on the water – “They are united…” (10:10’) Nosiko reports from her visit together with Cleopatra and Mariya at Zubo Trust in Binga Zimbabwe and especially about Bhindawuko Banakazi (BB = business women), a coop of 10 women fishing kapenta (mantemba) on Kariba Lake. James questions: could women in Zambia do the same…? Nosiko respondes and reports from the women’s exchange in Binga. What help or encouragement did Zubo women offer to the women in Zambia. Nelico presents; music DJ Kwe “Voices of Binga” track 09 “team work”.

03. Reports from Binga – “Fifty-fifty equal rights…” (15:40’) We listen to a clip from Nosiko’s recordings with BB where the women respond to Mariya and Cleopatra’s questions on how they managed to negotiate the freedom to go to work with their husbands. “In Zambia… we don’t allow women to participate in any activity…” James responds. Three male callers follow up in disbelieve with questions on details of the situation of women on a fishing rig. Nosiko clarifies. Mukuwa Mutinta adds some details from the history of this project of Zubo Trust.

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04. Pumba’s ad-hoc ad for Binga Soap – “Eh-nsipa is the best…!!” (01:15’) This is an edited, chance-recording we made with Muchindu Pumba towards the end of the fundraising concert for Zongwe FM. You’ll here event and music still on-going in the background. Pumba had a long conversation with Matron, felt inspired about the Zubo project and lend her sisters across the waters in Zimbabwe this full-hearted support. Remix with Zubo’s Angeline.

05. Reports from Binga: Jatropha Soap – “We are ready to join…!” (13:20’) We listen to Nosiko’s recording introducing the Jatropha soap project of Zubo Trust. Kasimbi-ka-malaiti (“the electrical girl”) calls a number of times inquiring about details of the production process. Cleopatra, one of the women who went to Binga is herself very interested in the project and ready to reply in detail. Another lady-caller adds with excitement that she and her group are ready to join any project which the women who went to visit Zubo will start now. James presents the show with Nosiko, Cleopatra, Mariya, Mary Mwakoi and Maria of Tusumpuke Women’s Club.

6 Radio Reports from Binga

06. Zubo’s Matron Muleya at Zongwe – “We can learn from each other….” (15:53’) Monica and James talk with Matron Muleya about women’s projects in Binga and Sinazongwe. Soundscape recordings take the listeners to Sebungwe River Mouth in Binga, the fish-farming project of the Tuligwazye women and the Women Fishing Coop “Bhinawuko Banakazi”. James can contribute experiences from fish-farming projects in Sinazongwe. With another audio recording, Monica remembers the wish of Sinazongwe women clubs to learn from Zubo’s women how to weave bags from Malala. The show winds down with a number of tracks from the Radio-Bridge Compilation which had just been launched with the fundraising concert on the day before; here, “We are One” remix by Valerie Vivancos.

5 Matron Muleya at Concert

07. Bamukuwa from KDF at Zongwe – “Do you have tribes in Germany…!?” (04:32’) Susan and Pia from Germany are working as volunteers in the youths and gender programmes at Kaluli Development Foundation (KDF) in Sinazongwe. The two women have been in the district for a year now and are about to return to Germany. In the show they look back at their experiences in working with the youths and school children in Sinazongwe. Station Manager, Kennedy Kambole presents, Nelico joins the conversation interested to tease out what the visitors observed as different from their home country. Music: remixes by Donna Maya and Danny Thompson

08. Bamukuwa visit from Austria at Zongwe – “What are the differences…?” (02:56’) Nelico and James talk with Selina and Marion. Their visit at Zongwe continues a history of cultural exchanges and partnership with Free Radio Stations in Austria. Marion and Selina are at that time on an internship at an orphanage for blind children near Mazabuka. Like Nelico and James, Marion volunteers as a presenter at Free Radio Salzkammergut (FRS). James brings up a track from the Radio-Bridge Compilation, a contribution by Macdonald Chiemezie Nwokeji, Nigerian presenter of “Hallo Africa…” a music show at FRS in Upper Austria.

Mo and Nosiko at pre concert show

09. Zongwe Family Show reviewing the concert – “ZongweFM has been born again…!” (11:16’) A show with Kennedy, Nelico, James, Mukuwa Mutinta and many clips from the fundraising concert for Zongwe FM a week before; here for example, Thomas’ praise song for Zongwe, Muka Moonga’s culture dance group, the speeches by radio champion Kasimbi ka-malaiti and Zubo’s Matron Muleya.

3 Basimbi Radio

10. Basimbi Radio Jingle – “Join me as your sister…!” (2:01’) Nosiko’s call-out to the girls (basimbi) at Sinazongwe to come and join her in the ZongweFM team. Basimbi Radio was a special venture throughout the school holidays in August with weekly workshops and live shows. The jingle is a sonic international coproduction of Nosiko, Mutinta Mukuwa and DJ Kwe. The music includes instrumentals from “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga” album by DJ Kwe tracks 05 and 08.

Matrons show DJ Mo

11. Zongwe Family Show before the concert – “I was the only girl…” (6:35’) On the evening before the concert the entire Zongwe team went on-air with a special show to call the community for the concert with many local musicians and the launch of The Radio-Bridge Compilation as special CD edition. For the show, we received and aired messages of support by Mario, station manager at Zongwe’s Austrian partner radio, Free Radio Salzkammergut, Nervious Siantombo at Panos Southern Africa and Petronella at Radio Phoenix in Lusaka. The message and insert from Petronella inspired vivid response from DJ Mo and DJ Nosiko. The studio – as usual filled with male presenters but plans for Basimbi Radio already in the pipeline, the women presenters, Monica and Nosiko were delighted to grasp the opportunity.

12. Basimbi Radio with Ruth, Knowledge, and Minibas – “You can do it…!” (7:18’) Ruth presents a programme with a number of her friends from Sinazongwe Secondary. Minibas describes how to cook chicken and tomato sauce; others question and contribute; whether to add oil or not is an issue. The girls go into detailed description and have fun with it. A clip from an interview with Chiza Mwinde in Binga; Knowledge adds her encouragement to girls in maths. (Nelico and James have promised to continue the Basimbi Radio series in coop with the school; this is the first show they produced)

3 Basimbi Radio3

13. Zongwe Family Show before the concert – “A Radio-Bridge across the Zambezi…” (7:23’) A second excerpt from the Zongwe Family on the night before the concert. Muka Moonga sings a traditional song. Mutinta Mukuwa responds. Women’s radio solidarity. Music: Labecca’s song remix by Feralmind

Sinazongwe Community Radio Women's Exchange Visit

1 Radio Bridge Compilation

Sales of the Radio-Bridge Compilation benefit radio-makers in training both sides of the Zambezi !

Radio Champion Kasimbi ka-malaiti

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Radio-Bridge Compilation in local off-line/ on-air recasts

2018/08/01

20180711_145439The Radio-Bridge Compilation is moving with us on the ground. It’s being re-cast and broadcast by the hands and voices of the Zongwe FM Team as we push on together.

20180712_163646A special edition of 100 CD has been produced in a process of local fundraising and community mobilisation for Sinazongwe Community Radio.

20180719_173854The Radio-Bridge Compilation received a celebratory local launch with a Zongwe Family Broadcast and a Concert with local musicians, the School Choir of Sinazongwe Primary/Secondary and Culture Groups.

20180719_172955We received and aired messages of support by Mario (Freies Radio Salzkammergut), Nervious (@Panos) and Petronella (@Phoenix FM). Zongwe’s announcers were wearing t-shirts of Zongwe’s partner radio @Freies Radio Salzkammergut in Austria.

20180720_175228The Radio-Bridge Concert was graced even by a very special visiter: Zubo Trust’s Matron Muleya joint the event from Binga across the Lake and national border. Zubo Trust and Zongwe FM are the pillars of the Radio-Bridge across the Zambezi for the Tonga Communities of the Valley. It’s the voices of Zubo and Zongwe women which resonate in the vocals of the Radio-Bridge Compilation.

20180720_171937And indeed radio-bridging across the Zambezi is continuing as we speak while Matron carries recordings of the concert and broadcasts to the Zimbabwe side of the Valley. We are hearing that Zubo women have been listening and received the recordings as if live radio !!

20180720_174425In the meantime, building work on purpose-build studios for Zongwe FM is progressing with participation of the expanded radio team and exemplary support by local government.

20180721_171507A jingle for the Radio-Bridge Concert. International co-production by Zongwe DJ Nosiko and “Mukuwa Mutinta” with music from the compilation by Italian composer Valerio Orlandini and vocals by Zubo Trust’s Donor Ncube.

Sales of the compilation will benefit radio-makers in training both sides of the Zambezi !

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Radio Solidarity

2018/06/29

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While the tracks of the Radio-Bridge Compilation are reaching local grounds at present, a radio remix on the compilation joins us in solidarity from Australia.

“This is a Radio-Bridge across the Zambezi and the World….” The power of radio connects the local and the global in the presence of our shared listening, that’s what I hear resonating across DJ Lapkat’s radio remix. DJ LAPKATinvites us on a journey of listening with a beautifully woven mix of selected tracks from the compilation and, in doing so adds yet another continent to the Radio-Bridge. Much love n respect LAPKAT for applying her skillful listening to the Radio-Bridge interactions.

With, Bina Annette, Budima musicians, Canary Burton, Cesko and Milla,  Chiza N Mwinde, Claudia Wegener/ radio continental drift, Crystal Kwe FavelDemetrio Cecchitelli, disquetteïs, Dixie Treichel, Donor Ncube, Duo IJ / Inge van den Kroonenberg and Jürgen De Blonde , Erika Preisel / Freies Radio Salzkammergut, Eunice Mwinde and her grandmother, Feralmind, Georg Ritter, Godsglory Nk Jibril-ellams , Ifrah Mansour, Ilpo Jauhiainen, John Barber, Kariyangwe Women’s Forum, Konrad Behr, Labecca Munkuli, Lucia Munenge, Lydia Banda Ndeti,  Lydia Lness Akwabi MC aka L-NESS, Macdonald Chiemezie Nwokeji / FRS, Margaret Munkuli and her mother, Monica Kindness Siabunkululu / DJ Mo, Mweezya and Mweeka Women Clubs, Niki Matita, Simatelele Women’s Forum, Thomas R. Miller aka Comrade Squelch, Tusumpuke Saving Group and Nsenga Women’s Club, Patience Kabuku/ DJ Petty Young, prOphesy sun, Tuligwasye Women, Valerie Vivancos, Valerio Orlandini, Zoe IrvineZubo Trust and Zongwe FM; COVER ART: Trunkstore Arts

LISTEN / DOWNLOAD TO LA DANCA POETICA

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Hear and Support : The Radio-Bridge Compilation

2018/05/05

In team with radio-makers at Zongwe FM and the women of Zubo Trust, we are proudly presenting a compilation of radio remixes produced by international artists and radio-makers in response to audio/radio actions both sides of the Zambezi.

A Radio-Bridge created of 23 music tracks, by more than 50 contributors from 17 countries awaits you. Join us and enjoy listening!

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The Compilation is a fundraiser for new project activities this year:

All proceeds from the compilation’s online sales will benefit radio-makers in training both side of the Zambezi, in Sinazongwe Zambia and Binga Zimbabwe. Twalumba loko! twalumba maningi ! thank you for your radiating solidarity !

with: Bina Annette, Budima musicians, Canary Burton, Cesko and Milla, Chiza Mwinde, Claudia Wegener/ radio continental drift, Crystal DJ Kwe Favel, Demetrio Cecchitelli, disquetteïs, Dixie Treichel, Donor Ncube, Duo IJ / Inge van den Kroonenberg and Jürgen De Blonde , Erika Preisel / FRS, Eunice Mwinde and her grandmother, Feralmind, Georg Ritter, Godsglory JibrilEllams, Ifrah Mansour, Ilpo, John Barber, Kariyangwe Women’s Forum, Konrad Behr, Labecca Munkuli, Lucia Munenge, Lydia Banda Ndeti, Lydia Akwabi MC aka L-NESS, Macdonald Chiemezie Nwokeji / FRS, Margaret Munkuli and her mother, Monica Sianbunkululu/ DJ Mo, Mweezya and Mweeka Women Clubs, Niki Matita, Simatelele Women’s Forum, Tom Miller aka Comrade Squelch, Tusumpuke Saving Group and Nsenga Women’s Club, Patience Kabuku/ DJ Petty Young, prOphesy sun, Tuligwasye Women, Valerie Vivancos, Valerio Orlandini, Zoe Irvine, Zubo Trust and Zongwe FM;    PRODUCTION: radio continental drift

COVER ART: Trunkstore arts

Some background:

The BaTonga, the people of the Great River lost their ancestry when the Zambezi Valley was flooded to construct Kariba dam and lake in a colonial, World-Bank financed project at the end of the 1950. The Tonga people had to undergo the traumatic experience of forceful removal and resettlement. While the benefits of Kariba bypass most of the rural communities till today.

After 60 years of struggle, the Valley Tonga people have a story to tell about cultural survival, creative resilience and determination for self-help and self-organisation; and this is what you can hear resonate across he Radio-Bridge Compilation and the original recordings which featured in the call-out playlist.

You are most welcome to get in touch with us.

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For more information you may also consult the websites of our partners:

Zubo Trust;  Freies Radio Salzkammergut;  Radio Fro;  Tonga Online

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Download : Spendenaufruf (deutsch)

Download: free audio fundraiser

You may also support our broadcast training this year via: 

Baobab e.V.; Netzwerk für kulturelle Vielfalt und Nord-Süd Entwicklung; Stichwort: „Sambesi Radio“; IBAN: DE67 4306 0967 4103 8566 00; BIC: GENODEM1GLS; GLS Bank; www.baobab-ev.org

 

 

Women on-air at Zongwe FM

2018/01/07

 

 “MUGUWA IN THE COMMUNITY”

A live on-air show with Patience Kabuku aka DJ Petty Young, Monica Siabunkululu aka DJ Mo and Claudia Wegener aka “Mukuwa Mutinta” aka radio continental drift in the Zongwe FM studio in Sinazongwe, Zambia, 2 Sept. 2016. (English/ ChiTonga).

Mukuwa” means the white, English-speaking stranger in ChiTonga, the language spoken by Tonga people both sides of the Zambezi; “muntu siya” means the black person, the African.

 

In this show, we are going together on a radiophonic journey to “mukuwa-country” and “munutusiya country”. What does it sound like in “mukuwa country”…?! Or, what sounds would we hardly come across over there, which are so familiar to us here, on the African continent…?!

We are listening to the sounds around a borehole and the sounds on a German motorway bridge; and, via on-air transmission ringing “mukuwa-country” church-bells over all Sinazongwe for probably the first time. We are listening to the sounds of the night and the different sounds of open markets this side and that side; and we get to talk about cleanliness and hygiene, relations to staple foods, social effects of cold weather, gardens, compounds, holidays and loneliness. 

Via the links can listen to the soundscapes on the All Africa Sound Map.

 

A white stranger in the rural areas will typically be greeted by the local children running together screaming “mukuwa, mukuwa!” This may be similar in rural areas across the globe; but here, on the African continent it has the bitter taste of colonial history and racism – probably not for the children, but certainly for me, the “mukuwa” and, other grown-ups listening to the encounter.

However, together with Patience and Monica, we pick up on the underlying prejudice and stereotypes on a lighter note, challenging each other in a vocal dance around stereotypes on the stage of a radio listening-play.

 

In August, 2016 radio continental drift has been partnering with ZongweFM, training five young presenters in audio recording, interview techniques, oral history methods, archiving, audio editing and playlist development for live on-air shows. Together with the two women in the Zongwe staff team, Patience Kabuku and Monica Siabunkululu, we developed 9 live on-air radio shows in which we are presenting project recordings from Zubo’s women in Binga and recordings with Sinazongwe women clubs.

Find a playlist of clips from three of our live shows at Zongwe FM

Zongwe FM is a community radio station in Sinazongwe, Southern Province of Zambia.

“Stories of Gardens…” on Datscha Radio

2017/09/13

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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!

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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.”

Swedish Radio features Remixes

2016/02/14

Sonic Cross-cultural exchanges 1

We are delighted about the announcement by Lisa Wall​, producer at Swedish National Radio, that the playlist of “Sonic cross-cultural exchanges” will feature in the Elektroniskt i P2​ show on Sunday 21st February 2016, CET 20:00.

The playlist features work by the following artists:
Sarah Washington (Germany, UK) – Annie Mpalume​ (Zimbabwe)
Gaël Segalen​ (France) and Pamela Kenmoé (US) – Chiwoniso Maraire; Linda Gabriel​; Ruvimbo Tenga​ (Zimbabwe); Zambia Popular Theatre Alliance (ZAPOTA)
DJ Kat Bpm​ (UK) – Soneni Sonny Gee Gwizi​; Virginia Phiri​ (Zimbabwe)
Felicity Ford​ (UK) – Esnart Mweemba​ (Zambia)
Patricia Walsh (UK) – Joyce Jenje Makwenda​ (Zimbabwe)
Dixie Treichel​ (US) – Mavis Moyo (Zimbabwe)
Dinah Bird​ (France) – Mavis Moyo (Zimbabwe)
Valerie Vivancos​ (France) – Mavis Moyo; Thandanani Women’s Ensemble (Zimbabwe)
Jordan Thomas​ (Canada) – Mulenga Kapwepwe (Zambia)
Luiza Schulz (Brazil, Austria) “Pontos de Escuta”
Antye Greie (Finland) – Ruvimbo Tenga (Zimbabwe)
Donna Maya​ (Germany) – Soneni Gwizi (Zimbabwe)
Danny Thompson​ (UK) – Soneni Gwizi; Virginia Phiri; Thembi Ngwabi (Zim.); Petronella Mkandawire​ (Zambia)
Anna Stereopoulou​ (Greece) – Virginia Phiri (Zimbabwe)
Sirpa Jokinen​ (Finland) – Virginia Phiri (Zimbabwe)
Inge van den Kroonenberg​ and “the Genetic Choir​” (Netherlands) – Virginia Phiri (Zimbabwe)
Additional:
DJ Xyramat [special remix for her radio show on Freies Sender Kombinat​ dedicated to the playlist on 8 May 2015]
Radio Continental Drift “Zambezi Women Call-out” (initial sonic call-out) Nov.2014

 

Lisa Wall, producer of the Elekctroniskt, a radio show dedicated to sound art, electronic  and electroacoustic music wrote to us:

“…We think this is a wonderful project – but even more important – it’s really good music! We are very much looking forward to introducing it to our audience. Please feel free to like our page and/or get in touch with me/us if you want to participate with more music – we are always listening for new wonderful stuff from around the globe.”

 

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

Passing on stories… in remix

2015/12/16

“It’s not just as if everyone is blowing their horns at any time; there’s a pattern and you can hear the pattern going and coming…

…one song for example is about a blind man, who went to Hwange in the year of hunger; he worked very hard and did very well and people got jealous of him, put poison in his beer and he died… – that’s the background story – even the small kids know the story…; but the lyrics are, ‘he drank the beer and he died’…

How’s this for passing on stories…?!

Penny Yon

 

 

Fascinated by the ways of passing on stories in lyrics, music and festivals in the BaTonga culture, three of the contributors to “The Women of the Great River” home in on Penny Yon’s and Esnart Mweemba’s descriptions of Tonga Music in clips 39 – 43 of the call-out playlist: The London-based painter, Alma Tischler Wood; the radio DJ and graphic artist, Terry Humphrey aka Trunkstore Arts, also from London; and the Austrian sound- and radio engineer and stage manager, Marcus C. Diess aka “Macussi” (his Tonga name).

 

'he drank the beer and he died" , painting/ digital print by Alma Tischler Wood

 

“he drank the beer and he died” – title of Alma Tischler Wood’s visual remix and, the lyrics of a Tonga song which Penny Yon introduces to us in clip 43 of the call-out playlist.

Alma Tischler Wood writes about her contribution:

‘I created digitally a pattern on the computer whilst listening to THE WOMEN OF THE GREAT RIVER (2) by radio continental drift. I was particularly impressed and amused by the subtle layers and rhythms of No. 43, Penny Yon’s Passing on Stories (…) I will create a painting (perhaps a series of paintings) of the pattern you can see on screen.’

A lyrics like “he drank the beer and he died” would be accompanied by a serial type of music, audio patterns as Penny Yon describes it, whereby drums beat the rhythm and the horns are each playing one note only and yet joining together in a musical pattern and composition – while the players would be at once dancing, sometimes running around, and the whole community being in motion…

A sample of BaTonga “Ngoma bontibe” music can be found on the Mulonga webpage (a composition by Siankwede Bokotela Mudenda; lyrics in ChiTonga/ English on the page, recorded in Siachilaba 1997, performed by the Simonga group); listen here

 

Lwiindi - photo M.C.Diess 2013

 

 

"BASKET" painting by Alma Tischler Wood

 

“…there’s a pattern and you can hear the pattern going and coming…”

Alma’s abstract composition seems to me working in a very similar way and manner. A pattern of same-size triangles in shades of grey tones (let’s say, the drums, “bontibe”) and primary colours (say, the horns, “nyele”) create music in motion before the eye. The triangle, by the way, is a sign and symbol common to many cultures on the continent and often used in decorative patterns such as on drums or on fabrics. The triangle stands for stability and balance.

 

Lwiindi_Speakers_cut - photo Marcus C Diess

 

 

The radio DJ and graphic artist, Terry Humphrey aka Trunkstore Arts in London created “Storyboard” (0:36) in contribution to “The Women of the Great River”. “Rapid listening and editing response,” Terry writes about his remix. The all-vocal piece could well function as a pattern, or a loop for a music, and dance – as it mainly draws on Esnarth’s chant from the Budima Ceremony which she sing as an example while telling about Budima. The piece also includes vocals from Penny Yon, Linda Mudimba, and Janet Mwiinde.

 

Budima - photo Basilwizi Bamulonga

 

Austrian sound- and radio engineer Marcus C. Diess created an intriguing musical encounter of women’s vocals from the call-out playlist and ambient recordings from the Lwiindi Festival, which “Macussi” (his Tonga name!) recorded on his visits to the Tonga community of Sinazongwe, Zambia in 2007 and 2013. In fact, Macussi’s skills were crucial in the establishment (2007) and technical updating (2013) of Zongwe Community Radio, as he was part of a team of community-radio-activists from Austria assisting Zongwe community in these tasks. Hear a broadcast by the station from 2007 about Lwiindi Ceremony.

 

 

Macussi aka Marcus C. Diess writes about his contribution:

“Recordings from my visits in Sinazongwe 2007 and 2013 (the Lwiindi Festival), Downloads from Continental drift . Hope Masike plays the Mbira Loops, the violine is played by Tony Stricker. Both live recorded in Bad Ischl 2014 by myself. Samples of a Kalimba played by me.”   Vocals from the call-out playlist include Penny Yon, Linda Mudimba, Janet Mwiinde, Agness Buya Yombwe, Esnart Mweemba, Barbara Mudimba and Viola Mwembe.

Do watch Macussi’s documentary to learn more about Zongwe Community Radio and the Lwiindi Festival of the Zambian Tonga in Sinasongwe. The first half of the film tells the story of Zongwe Community Radio; the second half, about the Lwiindi festival:

 

 

The film beautifully relates the BaTonga ritual during Lwiindi to go out on a boat on Lake Kariba and fetch water above the ancient Shines of the ancestors – now at the bottom of the lake. The women then carry the water in procession, accompanied by all the musicians with their drums, rattles and horns to the current Shines of the Chiefs male and female ancestors and share the water – together with locally brewed beer over the sacred burial grounds.

“The Tonga lost their land with the coming of Kariba but they have managed to retain much of their rich cultural heritage. The major threat has been the coming of some missions which preach that ngoma bontibe is of the devil. If these missionaries are to get their way and the Valley tonga are to stop performing their music, the Valley Tonga will finally have had everything stripped from them – even their unique cultural identity.”

For more about Tonga music, you may read the articles on the website of “Kunzwana”. I highly recommend the article by Keith Goddard “One man one note” from which the above quote is taken.

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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