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Music In West Africa

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Music in West Africa
Experiencing Music, Expressing Culture
Global Music Series
By Ruth Stone
Book and CD
128 pages

This case-study volume can be used along with the core Global Music Series books, Teaching Music Globally and Thinking Musically (set of two books, available separately item 803021). Each case study book uses the contemporary musical situation as a point of departure, covering historical information and traditions as they relate to the present.

This book presents fundamental style concepts of West African music using a focused case study of performance in Liberia among the Kpelle people. It discusses the diversity, motifs, and structure of West African music within the larger patterns of the region's culture, and describes how music and dance in West Africa are tied to the fabric of everyday life. Aspects of Kpelle music that are common to many other West African traditions are highlighted. The author focuses on key stylistic elements that Kpelle performers articulate and emphasize, and explores parallels to these analytic themes in the textiles and masks of related arts and in broader cultural practices.

Includes a 70-minute CD containing examples of the music discussed in the book.

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