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Kenyan Songs And Strings 1950 And 1952

Kenyan Songs And Strings
1950 And 1952


Chemirocha, here, is about Jimmie Rodgers, the yodelling cowboy, whose records were the first to be heard in this region. ('Chemirocha' is how his name is pronounced.) With accompaniment by a thum eight-string bowl lyre, Peny Gi Polo is a folk song put to religious use by a Seventh Day Adventist (though with a sarcasm which belies his profession of faith). Tong Tong is the chopping sound of an axe: 'The clever rabbit sticks to its own sort / How does a rabbit become very clever?'. Makomere is played by two friends: one with a gourd rattle and ankle bells, the other with a box lyre cobbled together from scraps of wood, with a bicycle bell fixed onto it for special effects. The singer reflects on his experiences in the Burma campaign, during the Second World War. And Olenyo Ber Neno Nyar Oganda sung by a school choir is about a woman so beautiful she makes the writer run naked and climb a mountain.