Archive for Ghana

World Music of Africa

Posted in Specials with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 18, 2010 by fred6368

A Personal History of African Music

I wasn’t planning to write this but I thought, after the World Cup had tried to celebrate the African dimension in football, I would comment on and play some African music, that I liked and influenced me, as a chronology (non-stop playlist on YouTube here). It is also Nelson Mandela Day today so as well as singing Nkosi Sikeleli Africa, here is a chance to say God Bless Nelson Mandela and enjoy some of the music from Africa. As Mendela said “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

Currently I am a huge fan of West African music from Sub-Saharan Mali, Senegal and Nigeria, as well as North African Rai and Arabic music. However during the World Cup I discovered that Ghana has a vibrant and developing music scene around blingy hiplife and both Cameroon and the Cote d’Ivoire have great dance music, you can follow new developments at AfroPop online. I live in London and apart from Ginger Johnson’s African Drummers, who played on Sympathy For The Devil at the Rolling Stones Concert in the Park in 1969, the first out and out African band I saw were Osibisa; criss-cross rhythms that explode with happiness. In our typical student house in London we used to play The Dawn off the first album to get us out of bed, but here is one of their minor UK hits from the YouTube Osibisa playlist by voycha; this is what they were like live. Music for Gong-Gong;   Continue reading

World Cup of Music July 6

Posted in World Cup with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 6, 2010 by fred6368

Semi-Finals

P/Review of Matches July 3/6/7; So it does look like a Holland Germany final after all; now there is a local derby to savour. Next Sunday I suggest you get over to Holland, wear some Oranje, neck down some Oranjeboom and hope the third-time lucky rule kicks in for the Soldiers of Orange. Given how unpredictable this World Cup has been however it might be won by street-fighter Suarez in the Final slipping it passed Casillas, who is due a monumental mistake with someone sharper that Roque Santa Cruz following up. Villa already deserves a winner’s medal as he is carrying European Champions Spain. Paraguay were immense until Nelson Valdez went off , suggesting that a great counter-attacking side can defeat Spain. Sadly Ghana, like Paraguay, missed a penalty that would have put them through; penalty heart-ache ruled Accra. Despite tipping them as dark horses I just can’t see Uruguay beating Holland but, whilst Germany are stronger, Spain are capable of unlocking any defence when Iniesta puts Villa through. So todays Theme Tune is some joyous Ghanaian Hiplife to thank them for their great performances. Trosky Blackman (featuring Osofo Mafia) with their Italianate BlackStar Football Anthem;   Continue reading

World Cup of Music July 3rd

Posted in World Cup with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 3, 2010 by fred6368

Quarter Finals

Preview of Matches July 3rd; Well as predicted Uruguay won on penalties but Brasil threw away a winning position against a relentless Holland. Will this lead to a repeat of  the 1974 Final between Holland and Germany? I thought the final would be between Brasil & Argentina so I will stay with Argentina, which might mean that we get a repeat of the 1978 Final between Holland and Argentina if Argentina win in normal time; Germany could nick it on penalties. So the predictions that Latin America might rule the world might prove a little premature. Paraguay and Spain doesnt seem too hard to predict, but I think Spain need to get ahead early and not let Paraguay either shut them down or start to believe they can nick it; Spain to win in normal time else Paraguay on penalties. Musically we’ve just lost two wonderful musical nations in Brasil and Ghana, and today I much prefer the music from Argentina and Spain, which doesn’t bode well. So with Brasil going out to a high Sneijder cross todays Theme Tune is by CSS, from Sao Paulo, and Listen to Death from Above;  

Continue reading

World Cup of Music July 2nd

Posted in World Cup with tags , , , , , , , , , , on July 2, 2010 by fred6368

Quarter Finals

Preview of Matches July 2nd; From now on there are matches that could have been the Final and Brasil Holland is one of those. Could go either way with both teams very solid in defence. Sneijder has probably been the playmaker of the tournament and Robben can shred any defence, but Brasil offer invention all over the pitch and should prevail; yellow-orange dayglo heaven. Uruguay and Ghana have been the revelations of the tournament musically, see yesterday’s post for more. Very even match with Forlan and Suarez able to score from anywhere whilst Gyan and Prince-Boateng offering a similar threat. If it goes to extra time then Ghana to win, but on penalties then Uruguay. So in tribute to South Africa’s wonderfully noisy staging of the World Cup and African’s continuing footballing presence in Ghana, todays Theme Tune is the wonderful Salif Keita and Africa; Continue reading

World Cup of Music July 1

Posted in World Cup with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 1, 2010 by fred6368

Best Music Videos by Quarter-Final Nations

I have long enjoyed Latin music, having managed a Venezualan salsa band Spiteri, because of its percussion, so the gentle, and intense rhythms of Brasilian music have always worked for me. And I also enjoyed the nuevo tango of Argentina ever since I first heard Gotan Project’s Tripitico (video) on the Robert Elms show on Radio London (thanks Robert). So having read a year ago that Carlos Gaudel, the Frank Sinatra of Tango, was really from Uruguay and, in Alex Bellos marvellous Futebol, on Brasilian football as a way of life, that the beautiful yellow, green and blue kit of Brasil was designed by a Uruguayan, I have learnt to expect surprises from Uruguay. So my major discovery on World Cup of Music has been Hugo Fattoruso and the Afro-Uruguayan rhythms of candombe that underpin tango.

Uruguay; The Uruguayan capital of Montevideo is known as “la Capital Mundial del Candombe” and like Olodum in Salvador Brasil, Candombe underpins various local cultural activities, as this video suggests. There is also an interview with Hugo Fattoruso in the text below. A longer Candombe video is here but this is the video of Lonjas de Cuareim; Continue reading

World Cup of Music June 27

Posted in World Cup with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 27, 2010 by fred6368

Second Round Matches June 27

Review of Matches June 26. Just two, but they were knockout matches, and in different ways both were thrilling. Uruguay, as I expected, prevailed against Korea due to two goals from Suarez. Great ; I can play some more Uruguyan music! Whilst Forlan has been the focal point of Uruguayan attacks Suarez is a very hard-working and shoots on sight. They combined for the first and after Korea equalised Suarez finished them off with a fabulously curled shot as though he wasn’t playing with a bouncy projectile. Footballers craft is starting to overcome the Jabulani, but it still flies too high, bounces too much, dips as you head it and… Poor Korean have to go home to their K-Pop. Should have tried harder lads, dont forget the iPods. USA Ghana was a real thriller. USA have been the comebacks specialists and Ghana gave them two chances to prove it and they took one. In the end Altidore, who really plays like England fans think Heskey plays, didnt have the forward craft of Suarez, let alone the finish. Two great African goals by Prince and Gyan has set a real African Challenge to get to the semi-final for the first time. Toumani Diabete’s jammin Symmetric Orchestra play a brilliant musical Africa Challenge;   Continue reading

World Cup of Music June 26

Posted in World Cup with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 26, 2010 by fred6368

Second Round Matches June 26

Review of Matches, June 25; So the titanic clash was rubbish, as both Portugal and Brasil had qualified. Ivory Coast came alive, or North Korea rolled over, but far too late. Brasil now have to face the fast-paced pressing Chile who looked exciting until their goalkeeper rushed out and gave the ball to the subdued Villa; who then scored a fabulous Waddlesque goal and put Spain safely through. Switzerland could have benefitted but their ugly goal policy didnt work against the excellent Honduras. Switzerland’s role seems to have been to wake up Spain whose only problem is Torres lack of fitness. We now have the worst overall performance by the big, rich and greedy European teams since, well probably since the Latin Americans first held a World Cup in Montevideo in 1930. Sepp Blatter now looks like a visionary compared to the likes of Domenech and Lippi. I’ve been wondering what my eleven best players so far might be and today Barnsley-born (hi Dad!) ex-Ireland manager Mick McCarthy picks his. Reads like the eleven players he could afford to sign for his Wolverhampton Wanderers, whose most famous fan is Robert Plant. His Strange Sensations want to Shine the fame All Around; Continue reading