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Music of the Kpelle of Liberia

Various Artists
Music of the Kpelle of Liberia

Liberian culture scholars Verlon Stone and Ruth Stone recorded this album of traditional Kpelle songs in 1970. Kpelle music can be divided into two categories, ceremonial and non–ceremonial, and spans themes related to life–cycle events, work, secret society activities, and protest. Two types of music, the sung folktale and signal music (which reflects speech patterns and communicates messages) receive special attention. Liner notes include a description of Kpelle society and culture as well as track notes.

Track Listing

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101
Entertainment Love Song Wokpe, Ponaweni, Kao, Saki, mixed chorus 4:23
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102
Framed Zither Solo Flumo of Totota 3:42
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103
Topical Song of the Medicine Men's Meeting Lopuu, Zonkâi ensemble 5:23
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104
Poro Entertainment Song Young Poro member playing the gbegbetele, fellow male initiates 2:36
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105
Horn and Drum Ensemble Four horn players, two drummers 4:14
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106
Children's Counting Song Young female soloist, children from Totota, Bong Country 1:13
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201
Musical Dramatic Folktale Otto Giddings of Sanoyea, mixed chorus 5:49
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202
Rice Planting Song Sia-weli, women of a rice planting co-operative in Gborola 1:31
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203
Musical Bow Solo Jokoli of Totota 1:00
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204
Gbelee Entertainment Song Jokoli of Totota 1:08
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205
Bush Clearing Song Tokpa of Yanekwele, workers of a bush clearing co-operative, drummers 3:03
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206
Xylophone Duet Peter Giddings, Adam Kwana of Fokwele 3:06
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207
Entertainment Love Song Gamai from Stewart's Rubber Farm near Totota, chorus, drummers 1:35
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208
Entertainment Song Two performers from Kakata 3:43
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