Popular Music. The sounds of popular music throughout West Africa are comparable to a combination of Western, Latin American and traditional African music. Genres such as Highlife, Afro-Calypso and African Jazz reflect this fusion and have developed upon these styles’ sounds.
What makes West African music unique?
The music of West Africa is characterized by two main aspects: rhythm and melody. The rhythm is generally the most important, and West African songs are polyrhythmic featuring two or more conflicting rhythms. … Rhythms are often played by percussion instruments, but also from the sounds of dancing.
What is a common style of music in West Africa?
Call and Response A common style of music in West Africa is known as call and response. In call-and-response singing, a leader plays or sings a short phrase, known as a call.
Where does West African music come from?
Major and minor migrations of African peoples brought musical styles and instruments to new areas. The single and double iron bells, which probably originated in Kwa-speaking West Africa, spread to western Central Africa with Iron Age Bantu-speaking peoples and from there to Zimbabwe and the Zambezi River valley.
What are the musical form of African music?
Influence on North American music
African music has been a major factor in the shaping of what we know today as Dixieland, the blues and jazz. These styles have all borrowed from African rhythms and sounds, brought over the Atlantic Ocean by slaves.
What are the characteristics of West African drumming?
Ensembles of drums, bells, and rattles organize themselves around a timeline most often played on a bell which can be heard above the other instruments. Off-beat rhythmic patterns that have syncopation are common.
What are the 5 most important features of African music?
- Flutes (bamboo, horn)
- Horns from animal tusks.
- Trumpets wood or metal.
- Pipes being single or double reeds.
What are the 5 kinds of African music?
14 African musical styles for you to explore
- Soukous. Soukous is a form of music that stems from rumba. …
- JuJu. Juju style originally came from Nigeria, a country which has produced many styles that managed to spread all around West African countries, including juju, jaija, fuji, ozzidi, palm-wine, highlife and afrobeat. …
- Mbalax. …
- Zilin. …
- Gnawa. …
- Mbaqanga. …
- Chimurenga. …
What makes African music unique?
African singers use a wide variety of sounds. The melodies are short, repeated over and over, also include whistles and yodels which is peculiar to African style of music. Soloist often improvises new melodies while the chorus continuous with the original melody creating a polyphonic structure.
What instruments are used in West African music?
West Africa (specifically Mali and the Mande people) has many of these harp/lute type instruments but the most widely known and used is the Kora.
– Rhythm idiophonic instruments such as:
- Slit drums.
What is polyrhythm in African music?
Polyrhythms are two or more rhythms played simultaneously at the same tempo. African music often uses percussion instruments. Ghana Shekere or gourd shakers make a sound similar to a maraca. … They are originally from West Africa and are traditionally played by men.
What is African drumming used for?
African hand drums are played to communicate, celebrate, mourn and inspire. They’re played in times of peace and war, planting and harvesting, birth and death. Drums have been such a large part of Africans’ daily experience for so long that drumming pulses throughout their collective unconscious.
What are the Latin American music influenced by African music?
The African musical influence is considered most dominant in widely popular Latin genres like samba, salsa, merengue, bachata, and timba.
What is the most important element of African music?
The music of West Africa is characterized by two main aspects: rhythm and melody. The rhythm is generally the most important, and West African songs are polyrhythmic featuring two or more conflicting rhythms.
What is the oldest African instrument?
The bolon is one of the oldest of the West African stringed instruments and was originally associated with the hunting and warrior traditions.
What is the tempo of African music?
This series of 24 notes, when played by expert musicians, is at a speed of approximately 600 notes per minute. But each musician, for himself, plays one-third that fast.