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Sunday, April 15, 2018

Eight Videos Of Traditional Liberian Wedding Celebrations (including two examples & a description of the Liberian Wedding Grand March)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams post presents eight videos of traditional Liberian wedding celebrations.

Selected comments from some of these videos' discussion threads are also included in this post.

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

In addition to noting the customs that are shown in this video (such as "spraying money", placing material down for the bride and groom to walk on in their entrance to the wedding ceremony, spraying money, and performing the wedding Grand March), I'm interested in the fashions that are worn by the bride, the groom, and the guests at these weddings.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Congratulations and best wishes to the brides and grooms whose weddings are celebrated in these videos. Thanks to all those whose music is featured in these videos and thanks to all those who are quoted in this post. Thanks also to the publishers of these videos on YouTube.

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SHOWCASE VIDEOS:

Example #1: Liberian Wedding/bone helena 07/05/08 wedding



rallyhugie ha, Published on Jul 6, 2008

bone helena 07/05/08 wedding
-snip-
A commenter wrote that this song was sung by Kanvee Adams, but didn’t give the title of the song

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Example #2: Grand March at our wedding 08-08-08 (Rommel's camera)



Posted by reynandvalenzuela, August 19, 2008

"Grand March. 08-08-08 wedding" (Liberia)
-snip-
I wrote the video uploader on that video's viewer comment thread asking for more information about that dance. Here's the response I received:

"My wife works with Liberians and having been there for almost 10 years, they offered to do the march at our wedding. my wife and i are both filipino's. this march was led by one of her co-workers. other than that, i don't know much, except that it was fun :). It was fun for the non-Liberians as well.
hope that helps."
-Rey

-snip-
The comment that I wrote on that video's discussion thread is no longer showing. That comment indicated that the Grand March tradition is derived from descendants of Black Americans who were emigrated to Liberia bringing that custom to that country (Read the excerpt in the comment section below). Here's a comment from a blogger on that discussion thread who disagrees with this position:
cece2711, 2011
"@Azizip17 You have it backwards. European proessional dancing is an adaption of this type of wedding dance tradition that originated in Liberia, West Africa. You actually think Africans would copy a European dance? I think not. lol."
-snip-
Here are some additional comments from that video's discussion thread:

Zeramey, 2012
"@cece2711 Im liberian and let me tell you its the African adaptation of the American South/European grand march."

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vibrantkitty1, 2013
"I'm not sure I agree with you. I've seen Ugandans march. Actually, most african culture march. Liberians are a more elaborate. You are a Liberian you should know the march-two steps in front and two backwards with hip actions. There is the traditional march, political march which includes a white handkerchief, and theres the wedding march. But Im sorry Americans and Europeans were not teaching blacks to march during those days."

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Arnold Xavier, 2014
"Can someone tell me the name of the song and the singer please: )"

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REPLY
Masa Hall, 2015
"It is a bassa song , it's hard to find"
-snip-
"Bassa" is an ethnic group in Liberia, West Africa.

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REPLY
XxMaryAnnMgxX, 2015
"+Masa Hall zuo po

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Example #3: Liberian Wedding Grand March



THEONEEYEKING, Published on Sep 21, 2014

The Grand March at a Liberian wedding in Minneapolis, Minnesota USA. African attire and hearty well wishers makes the event cheerful and colorful.
-snip-
Here are some comments from this video's discussion thread (with numbers assigned for referencing purposes only)
1. Queen Faith and Princess SoRaYa, 2014
"This is my wedding grand match. Don't know who put it up but thanks it look beautiful. We had so much fun. God bless our union...Steve and Faith Sept 20th 2014"
-snip--
Additional Liberian Grand March videos will be presented ASAP in related pancocojams post and that link will be added to this post.
-snip-
Here are some comments from this video's discussion thread (with numbers assigned for referencing purposes only)
1. Queen Faith and Princess SoRaYa, 2014
"This is my wedding grand match. Don't know who put it up but thanks it look beautiful. We had so much fun. God bless our union...Steve and Faith Sept 20th 2014"

2. Eve Heart, 2015
"Amazing job with the fashion
So much details in each outfit. Love the video"

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3. Jean Paul, 2015
"Steve and Faith may you'll be blessed with many happy years, enjoyed the video. Thanks for sharing."

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4. Rami, 2016
"Anyone know the name of the songs being played"

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REPLY
5. mary dweh
"@Rami biggest mistake by Friday the cellphone man"
-snip-
Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2018/04/liberian-recording-artist-friday-cell.html for a pancocojams post that showcases this song.

Also, click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2012/02/grand-march-liberia-west-africa.html for a 2012 pancocojams post about the Liberian wedding Grand March. A description of the Liberian wedding Grand March is re-quoted in this post's comment section below.

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Example #3: Liberian Wedding, Bride and Groom Entrance



MonseoTV, Published on Feb 9, 2015

Liberian Weddings are full of joy and traditions. In this clip, you see everybody all happy dancing as the Mothers welcome the bride and groom

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Example #4: Traditional Liberian Wedding Dance at a Wedding Reception~ James and Lucy kudee



Gotellitmedia Productions, Published on Aug 17, 2015

July 18, 2015 in Grayson GA

Here are some comments from this video's discussion thread (with numbers assigned for referencing purposes only)
1. MrSivram28, 2016
"why dressed like Nigerians?"

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REPLY
2. Angeline Freeman, 2016
"Because we are all African."

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REPLY
3. Francess K., 2018
"MrSivram28 this is not "Nigerian" its also a liberian culture dress like also in Sierra Leone they wear The same Thing bcos we are all The same people, Nigerian liberian and Sierra Leone Are very similar in ther culture and food
Ps: sorry for my bad english"

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Example #5: Liberian Weddings Entrance



Afranca Creations, Published on Jun 16, 2016
All of these comments are from 2016.
1. Ellie Saye
"Aye shout out to you for representing LIB with your wedding colorsπŸ‘ŒπŸ½πŸ˜Š"

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2. Leasha Vigabo
"Very cute but too much people in the bridal party. I attended a Liberian wedding with about 20 bridesmaid. TOO MUCH"

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REPLY
3. Allison McInnis
"you know Liberian people always doing the most"

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4. Jeanell Johnson
"what the song name that the bridal party is dancing to."

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REPLY
5. Lolo14_85
"the second song is Dapee liberian Music...."

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6. Zeker Zeon
"what's the name of that song in the beginning during the church scene?"

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REPLY
7. Afranca Creations
"bojo mujo - Thano (marry me)"

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Example #6: Liberian Wedding



Rawtalent Tv, Published on Oct 4, 2016
-snip-
The video's caption indicates that this is the wedding for Mr & Mrs Wuduwelh, September 10, 2016 in Atlanta, Georgia.

This video and others shows the custom of "spraying money". Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2011/09/pinning-birthday-dollars.html for a 2011 pancocojams post entitled "Pinning Birthday Dollars". I believe this custom in the United States comes from the West African custom of "spraying money".)

Click the "spraying money tag" below for other pancocojams posts that include this custom.
-snip-
Here are some comments from this video's discussion thread (with numbers assigned for referencing purposes only).

1. Venice Cooper, 2016
"God bless both of them Amen"

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2. Amina Bangura, 2016
"I was at teetoe and Marthalyn wedding"

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3. thegigadykid1, 2016
"Liberians are finally starting to play their own music"

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4. George Wolo, 2016
"What is the name of the song at 31:39?"

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REPLY
5. Teema Garpue
"heart desire by Kanvee (G)aines Adams"
-snip-
Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2018/04/liberia-west-africa-gospel-singer.html for a pancocojams post that showcases Kanvee Gaines Adam's Gospel song "Heart Desire".

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6. DJ Tee, 2016
"the first song is Imela by Solomon Lange"
-snip-
Click https://africangospellyrics.com/2013/04/19/imela-thank-you-lyrics-by-solomon-lange/#comments for the lyrics for the Nigerian song "Imela (Thank You)" by Solomon Lange3

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7. Amina Bangura, 2016
"she looked like a queen"

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8. Roseline Weah, 2017
"Go girl is your time to shine may god bless your marriage πŸ™πŸ™"

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9. Manny Whitfield, 2018
"Being one of the groom men in this wedding I can sincerely testify that this holy matrimony was fun and unique. πŸ‘Œ"

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Example #7: LIBERIA WEDDING MARRIED TRADITION - WEST AFRICA by Adhielesmana (c) 2017



Adhie Powernet, Published on Nov 29, 2017

Happy Wedding My Bro Dave Massaquoi

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Visitor comments are welcome.

2 comments:

  1. Here's a quote about the Liberian wedding Grand March from http://www.radiolib.net/component/content/article/25-bloggers/88-the-march-of-identity (This website is no longer available)

    "The Grand March in Liberia and the Diaspora
    - Dr. Yolanda Covington-Ward is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Africana Studies at the University of Pittsburgh.
    "One evening while I was listening to D.J. Ryhem on Radiolib.com, he started taking callers for a segment he called, "You know you're Liberian if".  As the phone ran off the hook, people called out foods, ways of dress, speech, and many other things. Another behavior that someone called in to add to the list was something along the lines of, "You know you're Liberian if you do the Grand March at every wedding and major event." Like many others, I have marched along arm in arm in a couple, grasped the shoulders of the person in front of me as we formed circling lines of dancers, and tried to march with poise and still rock to the beat of Lucky Shango while moving under the bridge formed by the arms of other couples participating in the dance. But just what is this Grand March? How has it come to represent Liberian identity, and does it have the same meaning here in the United States as it had back in Liberia?

    Based on my historical research so far, I have found that the origins of the Grand March in Liberia rest with the freeborn and formerly enslaved African Americans who came over to Liberia in the 19th century. In Liberia, this Americo-Liberian population, which came to constitute the elite over the indigenous population, continued to reproduce certain practices from the United States such as food, architecture, and dress. Another practice that they continued was performing a number of dances at balls, inaugurations, and other events, including a dance called the Grand March. The Grand March is an elegant couple dance based on dance suites of European origin that were brought to Liberia with free Blacks from the United States (Szwed and Marks 1988:31). Dances such as the cotillion, reel, Grand March, and in particular, the quadrille (which originated in courtly dances in 18th century France, became popular in the rest of Europe, and spread to the United States) all became familiar to a wide variety of Americans, white and black, enslaved and free. It is these dances (and interestingly enough, NOT other dances that were more closely linked with slavery, such as the ring shout or buzzard lope) that seemed to have been consciously reproduced in Liberia by the elite"..."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The excerpt given above is included in this 2012 pancocojams post:

      http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2012/02/grand-march-liberia-west-africa.html

      That post is part of a pancocojams series about the European originated Grand March (dance formation) and the American dances and African dances that it has influenced.

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