I Have My Liberty!: Gospel Sounds from Accra, Ghana

I Have My Liberty!: Gospel Sounds from Accra, Ghana

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I Have My Liberty!: Gospel Sounds from Accra, Ghana

I Have My Liberty!: Gospel Sounds from Accra, Ghana issued by Dust-To-Digital is a wild and wooly collection of field recordings that musicologist Calprin Hoffman-Williams compiled, by and large, during Sunday services in all sorts of churches and fellowships in 2008. While the idea of field recording in this day and age may seem quaint, the end results are anything but. Hoffman-Williamson chose Accra for a number of reasons: its rapid growth via an egalitarian urban sprawl, the diversity of its languages (among them, English), and the numerous dialects of its native language, Akan and, even more for the preeminent place of Christian Pentecostal religion inside this African country. He also chose his locations with an ear to locational sonics, which lends not only immediacy and presence to these sounds, but also underscores their rather astonishing sonic quality -- however raw the performances are. Among the 24 tracks on this set are a highlife-cum-Southern gospel-cum-second-line funky version of the old Protestant nugget "In the Sweet Bye and Bye" entitled "Onyame Ba" here. The snare drums skitter, the bassline rolls along the bottom end, and the guitars are right out of highlife -- though this indigenous music is heard throughout Africa, it originated here at the turn of the 19th century and is even today part of Ghana's more synthetic popular music. The preponderance of female vocals, which are much more prominent than the males) are mostly done chorus style, such as in the opener "Adoration Prayer" by the New Christ Believer's Ministry. Another track from the group, "On the Mountain," contains traditional hand percussion and handclaps to mark the wonderful polyphonous cacophony. "Wayi Me Afiri," by the Divine Healer's Church: Nima Assembly marries highlife and gospel to funk and raw American-styled soul. Even more indebted to soul -- of the Northern variety -- is "Welcome to Great Grace," by the choral group from Great Grace Church. The songs are interspersed with a cappella hymns and chants, occasional fiery testimony, and even brief sermons. The effect is electrifying, immediate, and celebratory. It is indispensable to the collection of any hardcore roots music listener.

Product Details

Release Date: 11/22/2011
Label: Dust To Digital
UPC: 0880226002329
catalogNumber: 23

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