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Monday, February 8, 2016

Thione Ballago Seck - "Mbaakh" (information, video, & comments)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This post showcases the song Mbalaxh by Senegalese singer Thione Ballago Seck. Information about that performer is also included in this post.

A few selected comments from that YouTube video's discussion thread are also included in that post.

Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2016/02/information-about-senegalese-gewels.html for information about Mbalax music.

The content of this post is presented for cultural, entertainment, and aesthetic purposes. I love the music, and love watching the dancing. I also love the traditional Senegalese fashions that are worn in this video.

Unfortunately, I don't know any language but English. I'd love to know what Mbaakh means and what this song is about.


All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to Thione Ballago Seck for his musical legacy. Thanks to all those who are quoted in this post. Thanks also to the publisher of this video on YouTube.

****
INFORMATION ABOUT THIONE BALLAGO SECK
From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thione_Seck
"Thione Ballago Seck (born March 12, 1955) is a Senegalese singer and musician in the mbalakh genre. Seck comes from a family of "griot" singers from the Wolof people of Senegal. His first job was with Orchestre Baobab, but he later formed his own band, Raam Daan, which he still heads.

Seck's album Orientation was one of four nominated for BBC Radio 3's World Music Album of the Year in 2006. In much of his music, and notably on this album, Seck experiments with the use of Indian & Arabic scales....

Years active
1970s–present

Associated acts
Orchestre Baobab, Raam Daan"
-snip-
Thione Ballago Seck's son Waly Seck is also a popular singer.

****
SHOWCASE VIDEO : THIONE BALLAGO SECK / MBAAKH



mor talla BYFALL, Published on Aug 23, 2012

la belle voix de thione ballago seck sur un rythme de mbalakh bien arrange donne ce beau tube MBAAKH de l'album DIAGA.video réalisée par serigne mor talla niang (BYFALL)
-snip-
Google translate from French to English with my guesses to correct that translation given in brackets:
the beautiful voice of thione seck Ballago [performs "Mbalakh" from the wonderful album "Diaga". the video is produced by serigne mor talla niang (BYFALL)]
-snip-
Selected comment from this video's discussion thread:
Unless otherwise noted, the non-English comments are in French and include Google translate from French to English. My standard American "translation" of these English translations are sometimes given in brackets.

BIAYE MAMADOULAMINE, 2012
comme toujours THIONE le monument de la musique sénégalaise est revenu avec ce beau tube merci!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
-snip-
as always THIONE the monument of Senegalese music returned with this beautiful [video] thank you !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

**
Celestin Bedzigui, 2014
Camerounais vivnat aux USA et bien que ne comprenant pas un seul mot, cette voix et la musique sont d' une beaute ''universelle''... Je ne comprends d' ailleurseurs pas pourquoi malgre sa beaute et l' energie et la qualite de ses clips, en dehors de Youssou Ndour, la musique senegalaise ne s' exporte pas plus. Je ne viens que de decouvrir Thione Seck, l autre jeune Seck, ou Pape ...l autre... Des voix et des musiques extraordinaires !!!!!
-snip-
[I am a] Cameroonian living in the US and despite not having a single word, the voice and music of a beauty '' universal '' ... I do not understand of ailleurseurs why despite its beauty and the energy and quality his videos, apart from Youssou Ndour, the Senegalese music s not export more. I only come to discover Thione Seck, the other young Seck, Pape ... or the other ... Voices and extraordinary music !!!!!

****
Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Fata ("El Presidente") featuring Mbaye Dieye & Waly Seck - "Nguenté" (information, video, & comments)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This is Part III of a three part series about Senegalese baby naming ceremonies/parties (ngentes; also found as nguentes and nguenté.

Part III showcases a Senegalese video of "Nguenté" by Fata (also known as "El Presidente") featuring Mbaye Dieye & Waly Seck. Fata (El Presidente) is a Senegalese Hip Hop recording artist. Mbaye Dieye and Waly Seck are Senegalese Mbalax recording artists.

Selected comments from that YouTube video's discussion thread are also included in that post. Many of those comments are written in French or in Spanish. Google translate translations to English of those comments are also given in this post.

Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2016/02/descriptions-of-senegalese-baby-naming.html for Part I of this series. Part I presents excerpts from one book and two blog posts about Senegalese baby naming ceremonies/parties.

Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2016/02/information-about-senegalese-gewels.html for Part II of this series. Part II provides information about gewel (griots), Mbalax, and Senegalese Hip Hop.

The content of this post is presented for cultural, entertainment, and aesthetic purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to Fata, Mbaye Dieye, and Waly Seck for their musical performances. Thanks to all those who produced this video, and thanks to all those who are quoted in this post. Thanks also to the publisher of this video on YouTube.

Disclaimer:
It's the policy of this blog not to feature videos or sound files that contain profanity. I don't speak any language besides English. Hopefully, the lyrics in this Hip Hop video are clean. If not, I offer my apologies.

****
INFORMATION ABOUT THESE SENEGALESE RECORDING ARTISTS
Note: Excerpts #1 & #2 are given in this post as they are written in English. Excerpt #3 is translated from French to English by Google Translate.

FATA (EL PRESIDENTE)
From http://www.africafilms.tv/en/personnes/1152
"Fata (El Presidente) Rapper (Sengal)
Whose real name is Moustapha Gnigue, Fata "El presidente " was born in 1976 in Saint Louis in northern Senegal. He made his first steps in the hip hop movement when he was just 12 years old at the opening ceremony of his college CEM Henry Guillabert . The young , reckless and brave , proposes to go on stage to present his first show , he had not prepared text ... Public reaction invigorates the young man then rushes in research models , inspiration like Mc Solaar , Benny B and other pioneers of American rap .
His career starts and he do duets with singers known as Viviane Chidid ... This mixture of Rap / styles Mbalax , earned him criticism from his peers . Very tenacious, Fata managed to win and be loved by the Senegalese public.

He also worked as an animator of rap emissions at 2stv and made some appearances in the TV movies " Bégué time" [by] Papis Niang"

****
MBAYE DIEYE FAYE
From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mbaye_Dieye_Faye
"Mbaye Dieye Faye is a singer and percussionist in Senegal. He was born to a modest family of griots...

Now, Mbaye Dieye Faye is famous singer and percussionist in Senegal. He makes rhythm in his music, the Mbalax...

Mbaye Dieye Faye is the percussionist of ”Super Etoile” band. But he has a tendency to sing at the same time with Youssou Ndour. He plays an important role in the band. Mbaye Dieye Faye has his own style in music, very much appreciated by Senegalese people, particularly women. In “Mbalax” rhythm, he introduced—as he calls it—“Khorom” (Salt ). Nobody can dance to his music without getting tired. Indeed, it is very hard to follow his drums. And it’s like making sport, because dancing his music means jumping, moving one’s body, and all members. So, nothing must be calm.

The role of Mbaye Dieye Faye in the band is also to make entertainment adequately. He is a griot, a repository of oral tradition, a praise singer, but he is more interested in singing love and romance. Most of the time he uses “Tassou”, a kind of speech with some rhythms, reminding one of rap music. That is mainly for amusing people, but often, speeches contain vulgar expressions. And for him, it is for exciting dancers, and having them moving more."...

****
WALLY SECK
From https://www.wallyseck.com/site-officiel/biographie.html
[translated from French to English by Google Translate]
"Coming from a griot family, Waly Seck was born April 27, 1985 in the Senegalese capital. Early on, he had a penchant for football...

Meanwhile, Thione Seck is a monument of Senegalese music and an internationally renowned artist prepared the ground for his son. He found him a place in his group what the RAAM DAAN. ... since childhood, [Wally had been used] to sing and act out the songs of his father. You will understand by this that it was not very difficult for Thione Seck to Wally what it has become today.

The return of the prodigal son has wreaked havoc in Senegal. Because with the release of his first single DIOUDO BO-end 2007, the melodious voice of Wally has delighted many. Three years after the release of his single, precisely December 17, 2010, Wally Seck released his first album entitled VOGLIO; which means wanting in Italian. An album of 7 songs which was appreciated and that allowed him to impose his brand....

With [his] 3rd album, Wally has shown once again that he is the worthy heir of Thione Seck. As stated so well the adage "good blood can not lie.""

****
SHOWCASE VIDEOFata feat Mbaye Dieye & Waly Seck " Nguenté "



Artbimanageman,Published on Nov 2, 2013
el presidenté avec waly seck et mbaye faye un vrai chef d'oeuvre regarder etapprecier

[Google Translate from French to English: El Presidente with waly seck and Mbaye Faye a true masterpiece watch [and appreciate]
-snip-
"Nguente" = Senegalese baby naming ceremony/party

****
SELECTED COMMENTS
These comments are presented in chronological order with the oldest dated comment given first. These comments may not be in consecutive order. I've assigned numbers to this comments for referencing purposes only.

I've only included comments in English, in French, or Spanish. The Google translate to English translations of the French and the Spanish comments are included after those comments.

My American English translations of those translations are sometimes also given. I planned to refrain from commenting about some of these comments, but I didn't completely succeed. In addition to sharing my thoughts on the saying "Keep it up" and the combining of African American slang with French or Spanish, I've included some information that I found online about the word "machala" (marshallah" and similar spellings). That word was frequently included in comments, and I was curious to know what it meant.

2013
1. Aissatou Niane
"Waly il chante bien,c magnifique"
-snip-
Waly he sings well, beautiful c
[Google translate French to English]

**
2. Oumie Mahmud
"Awsomee!!. I waited for this video ever since the "making off" was uploaded. Love the talented trio. Thank you Art B"

**
3. ManSour Djite
"Nice Fat boy!!! Thia kaw thia kanam! Mixage bien réussi!!! Proud of our culture!!!"
-snip-
I think that the middle part of this comment may be in Wolof. I don't think that "Fata" really translates to the English word "fat". Perhaps that was a typo or mistranslation on the part of the commenter. Which leads me to ask, is "Fata" a Wolof nickname, and if so what name does it come from?

**
4. sidi mohamed fall
"fata est un homme simple"
-snip-
Fata is a simple man
[Google translate from French to English]

I think “simple” here means meaning non-pretentious, not one to put on airs, [act important]]

**
5. amina gning
"VRAIMENT TROP NICE TROIS STYLES DE MUSIQUE DANS UN MEME SON !! machala chacun a assuré en plus la qualité du son et de la video est tres bonne"
-snip-
REALLY TOO NICE THREE MUSICAL STYLES IN ITS SAME !! machala each assured more quality sound and video is very good
[Google translate from French to English]
-snip-
Read the Addendum below for information about the word "machala" and similarly spelled words that are found in these comments.

**
6. abdoulaye sow
"la réalité des senegalais"
-snip-
the reality of Senegalese
[Google translate from French to English.

My translation of Google translate- [This video] shows how Senegalese really live.

**
7. Ousmane Diagne
"C est cool le clip big up"
-snip-
I guessed this one: This is a cool video [clip]. Big up.
[Notice the combination of French, African American Vernacular English, standard English, and Jamaican Patois.]

**
8. Mbaye ndiaye
Une idee tres original bonne kontinuation lé gars
-snip-
A very original idea good luck guys
[Google translate from French to English]

****
2014
9. Omar Ndiaye
"he volto escuchar mencanta las palabra el ritmo et la musica"
-snip
I returned to hear the word I love the rhythm in music
[Google translate from Spanish to English]

**
10. Mariama Dieng
"trés bonne musique machalla rien que de la classe et de l'originalité. bravo à fata, waly et Mbaye dièye faye"
-snip-
very good music machallah nothing but class and originality. Congratulations to fata, waly and Mbaye Faye Dièye
[Google translate from French to English]

**
11. aminata samb
"vous chante bien machallah bonne continuation"
-snip-
machallah you sing well good luck
[Google translate from French to English]

**
12. adaleite noorr
"trèeeeees nice le clip!!!! Tous mes encouragements et bonne continuation El Presidente"
-snip-
Here's my guess:
very nice clip (video). You have my encouragement and best wishes [for your continued success], El Presidente.

**
13. oumie ceesay
"Wally i love u the voice is so so specia just like your
dad.Karrmasalla wally"

**
14. DIOP Khady
"tro cool ton new style de rap fata, jadore"
-snip-
I guessed this one: Too cool, very [?] new style of rap, Fata. I love it.

**
15. Sarah Janneh
"Nice song keep it up"
-snip-
The saying “keep it up” is found in discussion threads for a lot of contemporary African music. I think it’s like the American saying “Keep up the good work”; meaning [I wish you] “continued success.” I also wonder if the phrase "bonne continuation" which Google translate translated to "good luck" might also be a form of that "keep it up" saying.

**
16. Ansou Camara
"hahahahah la verdad Fata eres grande y todos tu compañantes habéis trabajado en este clip ¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡ qui siguais asi para siempre.
la canción es super bien y el video "
-snip-
hahahaha truth Fata are great and all your companions have worked in this clip qui siguais like this forever.
the song is super good and video
[Google translate from Spanish to English]

**
Mame Absa Gueye
17. "c juste un HIT"
-snip-
c just a HIT
[Google translate from Spanish to English] Note the combination of Spanish with an English word.

**
18. modou ba
"c bien chante par waly seck"
-snip-
Google translate from French to English
c [Does "c" mean "This is?] a good song [great singing] by Waly Seck.
-snip-
My American English translations or guesses are in the brackets.

****
2015
19. Luno Maker
"Le premier clip de rappeur qui a atteind le Million de Vues, Congrats El Presidente"
-snip-
The first clip rapper who has reached the Million Views, Congrats El Presidente
[Google translate from French to English]
My American English translation of that translation: “The first rap video to reach a million v iews. Congrats El Presidente." I'm assuming that the commenter meant "the first Senegalese rap video or the first African rap video to reach one million views...

That video has 1,136,737 2/7/2016 viewer hits as of 2:25pm EST February 7, 2016.

**
20. Thierno Fata
"jécoute toujour cet music fata 4ever"
-snip-
I listen to this music toujour fata 4ever
[Google translate- French to English]

**
21. Souleymane Bah
"Cool"

**
22. maxentos kroos
"moy bomb"
-snip-
I think "moy" may be the Spanish word "muy" (English= very) and
"bomb" is African American Vernacular English (slang) for something that is dynomite (hot) = very good.

****
2016
23. Abdoulaye Diallo
"cool"

**
Seydou Seck
"+ibu hallucinant Mamadou Seck"
-snip-
Mamadou Seck amazing + ibu
[Google translate from French to English]

****
ADDENDUM: WHAT "MACHALA" (MASHALLAH) AND JAZAK ALLAHU KHAYRAN MEAN
From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mashallah
"Mashallah (Arabic: ما شاء الله‎, mā shāʾa llāhu), also masha'Allah, is an Arabic phrase that expresses appreciation, joy, praise, or thankfulness for an event or person that was just mentioned. While mashallah is used as an expression of respect, it also serves as a reminder that all accomplishments are considered by Muslims to be achieved through the will of Allah. It is generally said upon hearing good news.
In some Muslim cultures, people may utter mashallah in the belief that it may help protect them from jealousy, the evil eye, or a jinx. In Islamic aqeeda (matters that are believed with certainty), it is understood that protection comes only from Allah…
Examples]
Person A: I have just become a father!
Person B: Mashallah!
Person A: Your house is beautiful, mashallah!
Person B: Jazakallahu khayran!
-anip-
"Machalla" and similarly spelled words derive from the Arabic word "mashallah".

Information about the meaning of "Jazakallahu khayran" is found below.

****
From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jazak_Allah
..."Although the common Arabic word for "thanks" is shukran (شكرًا), jazāk Allāhu khayran is often used by Muslims instead, in the belief that one cannot repay a person enough, and that Allah is able to reward a person the best. Often the response to jazāk Allāhu khayran is wa ʾiyyākum (وإيّاكم), which means "And to you". A more formal reply is "w-antum fa-jazākum Allāhu khayran" (وَٱنْتُمْ فَجَزَاكُمُ اللَّهُ خَيْرًا) which means "And you too, may Allah reward you with goodness"".

****
This concludes Part III of this series.

Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.

Information About Senegalese Gewels (Griots), Mbalax, & Senegalese Hip Hop)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This is Part II of a three part series about Senegalese baby naming ceremonies/parties (ngentes; also found as nguentes and nguenté.

Part II provides information about gewel (griots), Mbalax, and Senegalese Hip Hop. These topics are larger than the subject of "ngentes". However, the information that is found in this post helps provide background for those non-Senegalese watching the video entitled "Nguente" that is showcased in Part III of this pancocojams series.

Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2016/02/descriptions-of-senegalese-baby-naming.html for Part I of this series. Part I presents excerpts from one book and two blog posts about Senegalese baby naming ceremonies/parties.

Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2016/02/fata-el-presidente-featuring-mbaye.html for Part III of this series. Part III showcases a Senegalese video of "Nguenté" by Fata (also known as "El Presidente") featuring Mbaye Dieye & Waly Seck.

Selected comments from that YouTube video's discussion thread are also included in that post. Many of those comments are written in French or in Spanish. Google translate translations to English of those comments are also given in this post.

The content of this post is presented for cultural purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

****
DEFINITIONS OF THE WORDS GRIOTS & INFORMATION ABOUT GRIOTS (GEWELS) IN SENEGAL
From http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/griot
"Origin of the word "griot" = "1955-60; < French, earlier guiriot, perhaps ultimately < Portuguese criado domestic servant, altered in W African coastal creoles" ** From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mbalax
..."Senegalese songs are usually unwritten, and certain instruments or musical styles are reserved for specific genders or age groups. In the past, only griots could perform music. Their traditional role was transmitting oral history, genealogies and social rankings, diplomacy, and storytelling. Today, griots continue to participate in naming ceremonies, weddings, and funerals."...

**
From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Senegalese_hip_hop
"History Of Griots
Prior to the wide spread of hip hop in Senegal, traditional music was transcended through pre-ordained griots. The term griot, also known as gewel, can be defined as, "… traditional praise-singer, musician, social go-between, counselors, or dancer and acrobat," [3] These individuals were born into, "endogamous, professionally specialized group often referred to as a 'caste'." [3] Their position in Senegal society was that of much importance for griots were are also known for their abilities as oral specialist who, "…had to guarantee not only the survival of their people as a culturally and historically defined group, but also the social status of the nobles they were attached to." [3] Griots were culturally responsible for knowing their genealogies in speaking and in song, to recite for the nobles.

Through they were not considered "upper-class", they were given food, clothing, jewels, land and slaves for their work. "While they could attain high individual status through their work and their social behaviors, their social status as a group was low. They depended economically on the nobles who paid them for their services, they could not attain positions of political power, and they were not allowed to bear arms…" [3] Understanding their role in society is understanding the importance of expression in Senegal. As historians, entertainers, and musicians, griots were influential in many ceremonies, such as weddings, funerals, births, religious parades, and politics, for they used song and speech to recite important information with the usage of praise songs."
-snip-
This excerpt is reformmated for this post to enhance reading clarity.

Note that the Wolof word for "griots" is "gewel". Also note that both males and females can be gewel (griots).

****
INFORMATION ABOUT MBALAX MUSIC
From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mbalax
"Mbalax (or Mbalakh) is the national popular dance music of Senegal and the Gambia. Mbalax is a fusion of popular Western music and dance such as jazz, soul, Latin, and rock blended with sabar, the traditional drumming and dance music of Senegal. The genre's name derived from the heavy use of accompanying rhythms used in sabar called mbalax.

History and influence
Mbalax (meaning rhythm in the Wolof language), is a type of music that traces some of its technique to the conservative and the religious Serer music tradition of Njuup (the progenitor of Mbalax), developed in Senegal in the early 1970s. Like many other francophone West African countries the Senegalese popular music scene was partially influenced by soul, blues, jazz, R&B, and rock from the United States, varieté from France, Congolese rumba, and Latin pop from the Caribbean and New York (e.g., pachanga, son, charanga, salsa, and Latin jazz) .[citation needed] In this mix of African diasporic sounds Senegalese fans and musicians wanted their own urban popular dance music so they began singing in Wolof (Senegal's lingua franca) instead of French, and incorporated rhythms of the indigenous sabar drum (see Mangin[1]). Dancers began using moves associated with the sabar, and tipping the singers as if they were traditional griots.

Among the bands that played this new style, Etoile de Dakar (starring Youssou N'Dour and El Hadji Faye), and Raam Daan (starring Thione Seck), Xalam II, and Super Diamono. Since becoming popular, both Mbalax and its associated dance have spread to other regions such as Mali, Mauritania, Ivory Coast and France. This dissemination has come about through radio, audio cassettes and televised video clips.

Mbalax instrumentation includes keyboards, synths and other electronic production methods. However, it is the Nder (lead drum), the Sabar (rhythm drum), and the Tama (talking drum) percussion, and widely influenced African and Arabic vocalistic stylings that continue to make Mbalax one of the most distinctive forms of dance music in west Africa and the diaspora"....
-snip-
Read the excerpt about griots above.

Thione Seck is the father of Waly Seck who is featured in the video that is showcased in Part III of this series.

Click the "Mbalax" tag below for pancocojams posts on that music genre. Among those posts is http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2015/10/youssou-ndour-serigne-mbacke-sokhna-lo.html and http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2016/02/thione-ballago-seck-mbaakh-information.html

****
INFORMATION ABOUT SENEGALESE HIP HOP
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Senegalese_hip_hop
"Senegalese hip hop began to emerge in the early 1980s. When hip hop first hit the scene in Africa, it went from merely being a fad, to a more social and political movement. Amongst the most influential leaders of this movement were artists from the country of Senegal. With the modernization of the country, and the rise in media, the youth of Senegal were able to embrace a new form of expression. One of the main reasons why hip hop has become preeminent in Senegal is due to its mixture of sound and culture. "Senegal's hip hop scene is distinctive and its artist extremely talented. The country has a history of strong musical traditions..." [1] Moreover, hip hop has not only become an aspect of life for the Senegalese people, but more importantly has translated to a way of life, gathering influence from the musical expression prior to its rise in Senegal, and understanding their past as it pertains heavily to its socially present state within music...

Modern Griots and Modern Music[edit]

After World War II, there was a rise in the night club scene where more diverse forms of music began to be played by foreigners. Coincidentally enough, Senegal became very much interested in the new form of fashion. However, this allowed non-griots the opportunity to capture persons which was once the job of the griots. While there was much competition between the two, modern day griots used their positions as a way to incorporate modern day music. While in modern-day Senegal, griots can be placed in three categories. "Those who have decided to refrain from practicing their hereditary profession and have taken up some other occupation; those who continue to perform, without innovation, and those who have managed to find or create a new kind of occupation that still seems to fit the traditional griots' ethos adapting the art of their ancestors to modern requirements and possibilities." [3] The griot's position in society, most relevant to modern day music, are those who use their song and dance as a new kind of occupation while still practicing the traditional legacies of past griots. These individuals are still highly respected for their responsibilities, and have also become incorporated in popular music culture. "Praise songs, far from being superseded, have instead become incorporated into popular music..." [3] Today, "griots have found new meaning for old customs, and new functions for old skills," [3] Although they originated from a caste which held no political power, modern griots still hold much power and status and are better off in life then modern families.
-snip-
Read the excerpt about griots above.

I've included a tag for "African Hip Hop" and intend to feature other videos of African Hip Hop artists, in addition to the video that is showcased in Part III of this series.

****
This concludes Part II of this series.

Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.

Descriptions Of Senegalese Baby Naming Ceremonies/Parties (Ngentes)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This is Part I of a three part series about Senegalese baby naming ceremonies/parties (ngentes; also found as nguentes and nguenté.)

Part I presents excerpts from one book and excerpts from two blog posts about Senegalese baby naming ceremonies/parties.

Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2016/02/information-about-senegalese-gewels.html for Part II of this series. Part II provides information about gewel (griots), Mbalax, and Senegalese Hip Hop.

Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2016/02/fata-el-presidente-featuring-mbaye.html for Part III of this series. Part III showcases a Senegalese video of "Nguenté" by Fata (also known as "El Presidente") featuring Mbaye Dieye & Waly Seck

Selected comments from that YouTube video's discussion thread are also included in that post.

The content of this post is presented for anthropological and cultural purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to all those who are quoted in this post.
-snip-
Update: February 8, 2016- I just found this article on 2013 informative and well written blog post about Senegalese "ngentes": http://senegalesekathryn.blogspot.com/2013_07_01_archive.html

****
FEATURED EXCERPTS
EXCERPT #1:
This excerpt is from pages 137-138 of the Google books portion of the 2007 book Masters of the Sabar: Wolof Griot Percussionists of Senegal By Patricia Tang (Temple University Press). Here's some information about this book from http://www.amazon.com/Masters-Sabar-Percussionists-Senegal-Soundscapes-ebook/dp/B0037CFDN2#customerReviews
"Masters of the Sabar" is the first book to examine the music and culture of Wolof griot percussionists, masters of the vibrant sabar drumming tradition. Based on extensive field research in Senegal, this book is a biographical study of several generations of percussionists in a Wolof griot (gewel) family, exploring and documenting their learning processes, repertories, and performance contexts-from life-cycle ceremonies to sporting events and political meetings. Patricia Tang examines the rich history and changing repertories of sabar drumming, including dance rhythms and bakks, musical phrases derived from spoken words. She notes the recent shift towards creating new bakks which are rhythmically more complex and highlight the virtuosity and musical skill of the percussionist. She also considers the burgeoning popular music genre called mbalax. The compact disc that accompanies the book includes examples of the standard sabar repertory, as well as bakks composed and performed by Lamine Toure and his family drum troupe."
-snip-
Excerpts of pages 137-138.

Note that the words given in italic were given as they appeared in this book excerpt for accent marks in the spelling of many of those words.
Masters of the Sabar: Wolof Griot Percussionists of Senegal By Patricia Tang
"At both weddings and naming ceremonies, sabars take place in the afternoon, after the rituals and ceremonies are completed and the celebrations is to begin.

At a ngente or marriage a large tarp or open-sided tent with chairs under it is usually set up in the street outside the house. The tent symbolizes a sort of extension of the household, keeping the event an essentially private affair, despite it being in the “public” street. This distinguishes it from a tannibeer, which never takes place under a tent, and is always an open, public event.

A ngente is usually an all-day affair. In the morning the men (male relatives and other distinguished friends of the head of the household), come to pay their respects and praise the baby. It is in the morning that the baby is named as well. Laax which is served at Korite (A Muslim holiday to be discussed later), is traditionally served on the morning of a ngente. Lunch will be ceebu yapp, a rice and meat dish, cooked with the sacrificial sheep. The men slaughter the sheep in the morning, after which the women griots busily prepare cooking it.

Although all sorts of friends and family visit the household throughout the day, the men primarily come in the morning, whereas the afternoon is the time for women (and, not so coincidentally, is also when the sabar takes place.). All guests bring a small monetary gift (ndawtal) to the mother to congratulate her and to help with the cost of the ngente (which can be a very expensive affair, between renting chairs, the sabar group, and providing food and drink for everyone).

In contrast to its role at a tannibeer, which is a dance event which is also an occasion for drummers to show off their virtuosity and showcase bakks, the sabar’s role at an ngente (and marriage) is purely functional: to accompany dance. The drummers play dance rhymes*... Normally they play a set for an hour or so, break for a big late lunch, then resume playing later in the later afternoon. Naturally, the drummers engage in woyang, praising the mother or whatever other prominent people are around, thus eliciting money for them”...

*The word "rhythms" here probably means "rhythms". The names of various rhythms are given in this passage.

[page 138]
"A Special Ngente Ceremony: “Bekete”
In addition to the naming, dancing, and other festivities common to all Senegalese baptisms, people of the Lebou origin, descendant from Diagne Ndoye and Diagne Mbaye, celebrate a special ngente ritual called bekete. Since Mbayes are of gewel** origin, the Mbaye family considers bekete to be an important gewel tradition and performs it every time a new baby is born into the family.

Bekete is a ritual of protection. As Macheikh Mbaye explains
'Bekete is a means of protecting the child. When the child is eight days old, we will celebrate bekete in order to protect him. We will protect him from the evil spirits, from any type of accident, from evil tongue (caat)- because some tongues will destroy anything when they talk about it. We will protect him/her also from the evil eye; that’s what bekete is all about- to protect the survival of the child, that’s all.' (3/9/98)
-snip-
Gewels = griots. Information about gewels (griots) is given in Part II of this series.

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EXCERPT #2:
This 2005 blog post was written by a White woman from the United Sates. In her 2005 profile she described herself as a teacher living in Dakar, Senegal for nine years with her husband. The blog post describes the amended form of a ngente (Senegalese baby naming ceremony/party) that the couple held for their two month old daughter.

This excerpt focuses on the blogger's descriptions of the baby naming ceremony/party. I reformatted this excerpt for this post to enhance reading clarity.

From http://birds-nest5.blogspot.com/2005/11/what-is-ngente.html [written by] Lisa, Saturday, November 12, 2005
"What is an ngente?

Well, we are busy preparing for Mariama's ngente. What is an ngente you say? It is what the people here in Senegal call a naming ceremony. It is typically held on the eightth day after a child is born. Until that time, the child's name is not spoken by the parents to anyone.

Typically the ceremony takes place about ten in the morning which includes a prayer of sorts, shaving the head as part of their tradition, and the announcing of the name. At about this time is when the sheep is killed, out of sacrifice or celebration, it is unclear. Before the ceermony takes place though, they begin to serve the laax. Laax is a grain that is made into powder and then formed into the consistency of oatmeal and then served with a sweet milky yogurt over it. It is really delicious! After the sheep has been killed, cooking of lunch begins, which is always "ceebu yap" (rice and meat), which is a signature Senegalese dish. This is generally served about 2:00, since they will serve the laax to anyone who comes until about noon. The lunch is served on large platters around which about 6 people will eat, in Senegalese fashion...

After lunch, guests are served some drink, generally cokes, frozen juice from a store, or one of the homemade Senegalese jus, which are not like anything we drink in the states, but they are delicious. This is finished about three or four o'clock. Often for the Senegalese, the day does not end here. They may serve leftovers of lunch to those who come around 5:00, and then will serve a dinner around 8:00. But also around 6:00, there is the exchanging of gifts between the families. The family of the mother of the baby and the family of the father of the baby essentially compete to outgive gifts to the other side of the family. If good enough gifts are not given by one side, not only does it insult the other side of the family, but it also causes the side who gives inadequately to be looked down on by all the neighbors because everyone is watching this event. Yeah, no pressure here!!!...

The mother of the baby is called the "boroom ngente", meaning lord of the ngente. The boroom generally wears a different outfit for every meal, getting more expensive as the day goes on. I will wear a nice outfit I already have for the morning but am getting a new outfit for the afternoon lunch time. Her hair and makeup are very fixed and very heavy generally."...

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EXCERPT #3:
This 2012 blog post was written by a White woman from the United States who identified herself as a Peace Corp volunteer. The nguenté that this blogger attended was held for the fifth born child of her (Senegalese) host mother.

This excerpt focuses on the blogger's descriptions of the baby naming ceremony/party.

From https://lesvoyagesdejulia.wordpress.com/2012/10/18/a-senegalese-ngente/ Posted on October 18, 2012 by juliaschroer
"Yesterday, I had the pleasure of experiencing my first Senegalese ‘ngente’ or naming ceremony. An ngente is a special day where family, friends, and neighbors gather to celebrate the birth of a new baby by enjoying yummy food, presenting gifts, and attending the Islamic naming ceremony. The affair seems to be a cross between a Christian baptism and an American baby shower. The ngente happens exactly a week after the baby is born. The baby girl was born on October 10th, so the party was yesterday, October 17th. During those first seven days, my host mom didn’t leave the house and tended the new baby 24/7. I am really impressed by how self-reliant my host-mom is and how she handled the pregnancy (I moved into when she was in her 7th month) and delivery with such a cool head and calm disposition!

Yesterday, everyone gathered at our house early in the morning and the women started to prepare breakfast – lahk (millet and yogurt deliciousness). At some point in the morning, the father of the child and his posse of friends meet with the Imam (religious leader) to discuss the child’s name for the naming ceremony. The mom gets to put in her request for the name, but ultimately the dad decides the official name (though the mom might still call the baby what she wants).

After surviving a morning full of anticipation, the Imam and father announce the name of the child, Miriam! The name is very important. Every child is named after someone, called a homonym or namesake. The person who the baby is named after becomes like the Christian idea of a godparent. It is a huge honor for a child to be named after you and you play a special role in the child’s life, like taking a particular interest in their well-being and giving gifts and helping out if ever something happens to the parents...

At one point in the day, I realized the baby’s hair was all gone. She was born with a lovely amount of fuzz giving pretty full head coverage. Then I remembered reading in our cross cultural manuals that there is a Senegalese tradition of shaving the baby’s head on the day of the ngente. My cross cultural notes explain “the ceremony is composed of shaving the hair of the baby, then the Imam or a learned man rubs his hand over the child’s head, prays and spits in its ears the name by starting from the right. Finally, a sheep is killed in its honor.” Another Senegalese tradition I’ve observed involving a new baby, or small children in general, is to make sure they are always wearing “binbins”. A binbin is a string with special beads worn around the stomach, arm, or throat, to ward off evil spirits and protect health of the child.

After the announcement, it is time to kill the sheep! Everyone gravitated towards the backyard at this point where the sheep was killed – the men did the dirty work and the women generally don’t watch, but may take a fleeting glance to see the progress. As soon as the deed is done, breakfast is distributed and the women get down to business and start preparing lunch (this happened around 10:30/11 am)...
-snip-
This blog post continues with a description of the lunch and evening meal, as well as some other comments. The blogger indicates that she was concerned about having to give a monetary gift for the ngente, but no collection was taken. She speculates that maybe this was because her host mother was well off and this was her fifth child. The blogger also indicates that there was no band for this ngente.

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This concludes Part I of this post.

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