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Folk Music of Liberia

Various Artists
Folk Music of Liberia

Liberia is a coastal country bordering Sierra Leone, Guinea, and Côte d’Ivoire. Many tribes employ “talking” instruments such as the fangbass musical bow that tell stories when played. “Bassa Musical Bow” tells the story of a man dealing with a women’s death: “She dead in the bush. The man ain’t got no family, ain’t got no boy, he ain’t born no pickin, ain’t got nobody. He don’t know what to do...” Liner notes include description of Liberia, track notes, and pictures.

Track Listing

Mandingo A female singer accompanied by a male singer/guitar player 3:34
Kpelle Bush-Cutters Six Kpelle bush-cutters singing while cutting grass 4:15
Gio Songs Gio laborers recorded at Bromley on the St. Paul River 5:04
Bassa Musical Bow Jon Wieh 1:34
Kpelle Harp / Kpelle Band (medley) Pepe Kroma 2:38
Loma (Buzi) Song with Fanga Drums Two male vocalists accompanied by female singers 4:12
Gio Song A song leader named Jeru accompanied by a group of Gio singers 3:05
Mandingo Song with Balafon A male singer accompanied by two balafon players 2:33
Bassa Belly Harp A man named Jeffly accompanied by a man named Bo 6:26
Kru Song with Guitar Grebo 4:53
Kpelle Band A Kpelle band recorded in Gbanga 2:14