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Monday, May 16, 2016

Five "Oma Lore" (Traditional Owo Culture, Nigeria) Videos

Edited by Azizi Powell

This post showcases five "Oma Lore" (traditional Owo culture) videos from Nigeria, West Africa. Information about Owo history and culture is included in this post along with selected comments from these featured videos and from one other Owo YouTube video.

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

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to all those who are featured in these videos. Thanks also to all those who are quoted in this post and thanks to jensbraun, the publisher of these videos on YouTube. Special thanks to commenter Tunde Onibode for sharing information about these videos in the videos below that are given as Example #3 and Example #5.

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INFORMATION ABOUT OWO
From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Owo
Owo is a city in the Ondo state of Nigeria. Between1400 and 1600 AD, it was the capital of a Yoruba city-state. The city has a population of 222,262, based on 2006 population census.

Etymology
According to Owo historian Chief Ashara, the name Owo was derived from the first ruler, or Olowo of Owo, named Ojugbelu. His pleasant manner earned him the name Owo, meaning "respectful", and the name was passed on to his descendants and followers.[1]

History
In their oral tradition, Owo traces its origins to the ancient city of Ile-Ife, the cradle of Yoruba culture.[2] Oral tradition also claims that the founders were the sons of the Yoruba deity Odudua, who was the first ruler of Ile-Ife. The early art-historical and archaeological records reinforce these strong affiliations with Ife culture.[2] Owo was able to maintain virtual independence from the neighboring kingdom of Benin, but was on occasion required to give tribute.[3] The transmission of courtly culture flowed in both directions between the Benin and the Owo kingdoms....

Owo came under British rule in 1893. After Nigeria declared independence in 1960, it was part of the Western Region until 1967 when it became part of the Western State. Owo and its indegenes played significant roles in the politics of the first Republic, in Nigeria. In 1976, it became part of the newly created Ondo State."...

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From http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/beni_2/hd_beni_2.htm Origins and Empire: The Benin, Owo, and Ijebu Kingdoms Alexander Ives Bortolot
Department of Art History and Archaeology, Columbia University, October 2003
"Territorial expansion and dialogue among the powerful states of the Guinea coast region of West Africa resulted in exchanges that were not only economic but also artistic and cultural in nature. As a result, Owo, Ijebu, and Benin, a trio of kingdoms located within present-day southern Nigeria, shared aspects of courtly culture including titles, ceremonial paraphernalia, and art forms. These commonalities are especially interesting and noteworthy given the ethnic disparities that existed among these distinct polities. While the states of Owo and Ijebu were composed primarily of Yoruba peoples, the core populations of the Benin kingdom were ethnically Edo.

In their respective oral traditions, Ijebu, Owo, and Benin all trace their origins to the ancient city of Ile-Ife, the cradle of Yoruba culture, and claim that their founders were the sons of the Yoruba deity Odudua, who was the first ruler of that city. Especially in Owo and Benin, the early art-historical and archaeological records reinforce these strong affiliations with Ife culture. Benin’s royal histories relate that the court’s brass casters learned their art from an Ife master named Iguegha, who had been sent from Ife around 1400 at the request of Benin’s oba Oguola. Indeed, the earliest dated cast-brass memorial heads from Benin (1979.206.86) replicate the refined naturalism of Ife sculpture; early Owo terracotta sculpture appears to have been heavily influenced by the arts of Ife as well.

Each kingdom’s historical ties to Ife contributed to its sense of identity, and doubtless encouraged and justified their appropriation of certain aspects of Ife’s political and religious practices. It was ultimately their ongoing relationships with one another, however, that produced broad similarities in their art forms and courtly structures."...

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From http://www.vanguardngr.com/2012/06/owo-culture-of-ancient-nigeria/
Owo culture of ancient Nigeria By APOLLOS IBEABUCHI OZIOGUON, JUNE 17, 2012
"According to a Yoruba local historian, Chief M.B. Ashara, the people of Owo were said to have migrated from the city of Ile-Ife to the present location in about 1100AD. Another source of oral history said that it was one of the sons of the gods who founded the city of Ile-Ife that founded the city of Owo. As a result of this relationship, the city of Ile-Ife seems to have a strong influence on the city of Owo. Indeed, the influence of Ife on Owo is clearly seen on some of their art works.

By the end of the middle of 15th century, Owo town had come under the influence of Benin kingdom. Thus, Owo became influenced by several facrors:
·Architecture: The houses of Owo people have fluted walls like the people of Benin.
·Religion: The religious activities of the Benin and Owo people look alike. For example, the Owo people perform the same ritual of “Igwue” like the Benin.
· Politics: The Owo people adopt chiefly titles like the Benin people.
· Regalia: The royal regalia is common in both cities.
· Traditional Rulers: The Oba of Benin and the Olowo of Owo use the same type of ceremonial sword that has looped handle.
· Sculpture: The styles of their sculptures are the same; their ivory carvings are difficult to distinguish which city has them.
· In Owo, the wooden ram-heads are placed in the ancestral shrines which are a common culture in both cities. · In some shrines also, there are found carvings of human heads bearing ram horns, long and curve-like over the head.
· The face of the ram-head is smoothly modeled and the neck is encircled with bead-like rows of wood, recalling the Benin bronze head. Similarly, as a result of the influence of Ife on Owo, both cities share common characteristics in their works of art."...

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SHOWCASE VIDEOS
Example #1: Oma Lore 1.6



jensbraun, Uploaded on Dec 22, 2008

Erin ogho, orin Yoruba lati Owo (Muibat Aladeniyi)

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Example #2: Oma Lore 2.6



jensbraun, Uploaded on Dec 22, 2008

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Example #3: Oma Lore 3.6



jensbraun, Uploaded on Dec 22, 2008

Erin ogho, orin Yoruba lati Owo (Muibat Aladeniyi)

-snip-
Selected comments from this video's discussion thread:
alaji2, 2012
"Where this music is from? Can somebody tell me"

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Reply
Tunde Onibode, 2013
"@ alaji2, the music is from Owo kingdom, Ondo state"

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Example #4: Oma Lore 4.6



jensbraun, Uploaded on Dec 23, 2008

Erin ogho, orin Yoruba lati Owo (Muibat Aladeniyi)

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Example #5: Oma Lore 5.6



jensbraun Uploaded on Dec 23, 2008

Erin ogho, orin Yoruba lati Owo (Muibat Aladeniyi)
-snip-
Here are some comments from that video's discussion thread, including those that I wrote. Additional comments will be added to this exchange if they are posted in that video's discussion thread.

temi Lash. 2015
"@ajokebabygirl ,OWO is a semidistinct tribe incoporating both Edo and Yoruba cultures. This has produced an exciting cultural mix , but with a distinct and identifiable Owo niche different from the above mentioned cultures. The Owo cultures is found as far apart as Kogi , Edo and Delta states. THe aboriginal owo people in these places are sometimes clled LUKUNMIS- Corrupted form of Olunkunmi- 'my friend ' in owo language".

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Azizi Powell, April 2016
"Greetings.

I'm an African American who just came across this an other Oma Lore videos while searching YouTube for Nigerian cultural videos. I plan to feature some of them in a post on my pancocojams cultural blog.

Thanks to Temi Lash for the comment five years ago that provided some information about the Owo ethnic group.

I hope that someone can answer these questions I have about these videos.

Is the language used in these songs "Owo" or Yoruba?

What does "Omo Lore" mean?

Also, what does "Dami Ma Ya Sogho" mean?

Are these religious songs?

Thanks again!"

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Reply
Tunde Onibode, May 15, 2016
"+Azizi Powell Great, kindly let me know about your plans, I can be of help, the musician is from my locality and I admin a site where I promote others with similar music from the same Owo Kingdom, Ondo State, Nigeria."

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Reply
Azizi Powell, May 15, 2016
"+Tunde Onibode Greetings!

I'm interested in knowing the answers to the questions that are in my first comment. I would like to publish at least one post on my cultural blog that features this video and perhaps other Owo videos.

Thanks for any information you might share with me."

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Reply
Tunde Onibode, May 16, 2016
"Thanks for the prompt response.

What does "Omo Lore" mean? = A born well person.

Also, what does "Dami Ma Ya Sogho" mean? It is Dawa Ma Ya Sogho = Let us come together to promote and Develop Ogho (Owo) i.e the Owo town

Are these religious songs? Cultural and social songs not reliogious."

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Reply
Azizi Powell, May 16, 2016
"+Tunde Onibode
Hi Tunde!

I love how we can communicate thanks to the internet! I am going to share this video and several other YouTube videos of music and dance from Owo Kingdom, Ondo State, Nigeria. I will post the link here.

I notice that I wrote "Omo Lore" instead of "Oma Lore". Does that change the meaning of the word? Also, which language is used for these songs. Google translate says that "owo" means "baby" in Yoruba and that "enyinan" means "person". If these songs aren't in Yoruba, is the Yoruba language and culture similar to that which is in Owo Kingdom, Ondo State, Nigeria?

I ask these questions with all due respect. Like many African Americans, I am trying to learn more about African culture since we have been taught so little of it in schools and universities. Again, thanks to YouTube, and people from Africa like you who are willing to share information, we have other ways of learning about Africa cultures."

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Azizi Powell, May 16, 2016
"I should have re-read the comment below from Temi Lash that was written 5 years ago that indicates that "OWO is a semidistinct tribe incoporating both Edo and Yoruba cultures. This has produced an exciting cultural mix , but with a distinct and identifiable Owo niche different from the above mentioned cultures".

Given that information, is the language in the video a mix of the language that is spoken in Edo culture (if so which language is that?) and Yoruba?"

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Azizi Powell, 2016
"My apologies, I made some mistakes. Google translate indicates that "omo" means "baby" and "eniyan" means "person" in Yoruba.

I have since looked up some information online about Owo history and culture. I am sorry for not doing so before I began these comments. Again, I appreciate your sharing information with me."

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Additional Comment from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CniB_PPtwjU OMOLOORE_002
Outreachat, 2010
"Well, this is almost like Edo music! The cross-currents that ran from the Benin Kingdom and the Yoruba states of Ondo, Owo, Ekiti and Ijebu must have been remarkably strong; even now to listen to any of those dialects is to hear echoes of Bini. I am not saying that such cross-currents flowed from one master-source only, my point is that there must have been a heavy traffic of influence both ways. Incidentally, the Ijebu dialect and both Urhobo and Itshekiri also share a lot in common.

2 comments:

  1. Notice that the hairstyle that is shown in the beginning still for the video given as Example #3.6 in this post is similar to the hairstyle that actress Lupita Nyong’o's wore for the 2016 Met Gala.

    Here's a link to a pancocojams post about that hairstyle: http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2016/05/lupita-nyongos-met-gala-2016-hairstyle.html Lupita Nyong’o's Met Gala 2016 Hairstyle & Its African & African American Inspirations

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  2. The movement that the women make will carrying the fly wisks reminds me of contemprary majorette baton twirling.

    Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2015/04/kongo-and-other-african-influences-on.html for a pancocojams post on African Sources Of Baton Twirling & Other Twirling Performances.

    ReplyDelete