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Seeing With Music the Lives of Three Blind African Musicians

by Simon Ottenberg

  • ISBN: 9780295975252
  • ISBN10: 0295975253

Seeing With Music the Lives of Three Blind African Musicians

by Simon Ottenberg

  • List Price: $35.00
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: Univ of Washington Pr
  • Publish date: 12/01/1996
  • ISBN: 9780295975252
  • ISBN10: 0295975253
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Description: In the course of his ongoing study of the aesthetic world of the Limba of Sierra Leone, anthropologist Simon Ottenberg met three men from Wara Wara Bafodea chiefdom who played an instrument called the kututeng, known elsewhere in Africa as the mbira and sometimes in the West as the thumb piano. Each of the three was blind, poor, unmarried, and childless in a society where children bring status and where musicianship is not a standard role for the blind. Each man's life experiences had influenced the way he performed Kututeng, a traditional but changing form of music. In this book, Ottenberg approaches Limba Kututeng music through the lives of these three musicians - Sayo Kamara, Muctaru Mansaray, and Marehu Mansaray. He looks at their different styles of performance, the social settings in which they play, the meanings of their song texts, and the relationships between their musical form and other Limba arts. Kututeng music is not an ancient tradition in Limba country, or in Sierra Leone in general, but dates to the early twentieth century. In recent years it has begun to change in response to the popularity of other musical forms in Sierra Leone. Ottenberg shows effectively how these three men have helped reformulate the nature of Kututeng in the capital town of the chiefdom, giving it a new vitality that is consistent with the aesthetic values of the Limba world.
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216pp b/w illustrations octavo hardbound. signed by the author.
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