Friday, 31 October 2008
Voodoo Ceremony In Haiti
256+ VBR LAME mp3
Vinyl rip & scans from Olympic OL-6113
OK, so actual zombification rites aren't included in these field recordings but I figure the shambling results of certain vodoun practices are the closest we've come to academic verification (and real-life examples) of one of the mainstays of the movie monster pantheon. Close enough for a music blog trying to work a Hallowe'en theme, anyway!
These particular rites were recorded in Haiti and released by Olympic Records Corporation. Not to be confused wih Joe Fletcher's Olympic Records from the 20s, the latter-day Olympic was a small independent label specialised in licensing public domain and ethnomusicological material. You've probably never heard of the company or its owner, Joseph Abend, for the same reason their history is most notable: losing a copyright suit brought by the estate of Scott Joplin to the tune of $200K in 1978. There's little other info available on Abend and ORC but around 1977 their catalogue dried up so I figure it's a safe bet to assume this mis-step (and what sounds like mediocre legal representation) bankrupted the label.
The spooky sounds and disembodied voices were captured by Maurice Bitter, who made many ethnomusicological field recordings for multiple record labels. He's also a prolific author in the subject of historical anthropology, often writing about the music and dance traditions of the societies he studies and he provides some good liner notes here as well.
1 Voodoo Drums
2 Nibo Rhythms (1:19)
3 Prayer To Shango
4 Petro Rhythms
5 Nago Rhythms
6 Invocation To Papa Legba
7 Dahomey Rhythms "The Paul'L" / Maize Rhythm / Diouba Rhythm "Cousin Zaca"
Let Soundological do the voodoo for you HERE or HERE.