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The Key to Sustainable Aid in Africa? Perhaps we should follow the music. News

…high susceptibility to degradation. This tends to encourage migration from rural areas to the cities. However, in the world’s cities, more than one billion people live without facilities for garbage disposal or water drainage, and breathe polluted air. 2 There are Healthy Cities policies and programmes aimed at addressing these problems. At times, it seems to be assumed that eventually everyone will move to the cities. MK Rajakumar, the great fami…

What people say about Singing Wells News

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…me training on audiovisual archiving in Kenya as part of a British Library World Collections Programme initiative. It was a great pleasure and it is wonderful to see these fruits of their expertise and enthusiasm.” Angela Impey, Convenor of MA Music in Development, SOAS University of London “As a charity dedicated to the documentation and dissemination of the music of marginal groups in Africa, Singing Wells plays an important role in bringing att…

The New Singing Wells website News

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…ted posts so if you find something you are interested in then it’s easy to read more about it. Instruments Library We have been collecting East African instruments since our first trip to the Kenya coast in 2011. Click here to read about the traditional East African instruments we have recorded being played. Responsiveness We recognise that a lot of our visitors may be viewing the device on iPads, iPhones, tablets, netbooks, Samsung phones etc, so…

The Singing Wells supports Ketebul Music’s ‘Kenya at 50’ project News

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…seems to have taken a photograph of almost everyone he met, including the ruling politicians of the era. The archive also contains some interesting artefacts from Independence in Kenya – including an invite to the ceremony of the handover of instruments at Independence. Colmore bequeathed the contents of his archive to his friend, Oxford academic Professor Richard Greenfield. Sadly, Professor Greenfield died before the contents reached the UK – a…

The Beat of Kenya News

…l their instruments to foreigners in attendance. The donor purchased 5 instruments in this way: two drums, one from the Luo tribe, the other from the Luhya tribe), one nyatiti (Luo), one orutu (Luo), and a fifth instrument called the litungu (Luo). Click here to go to Andrea’s blog : The Beat of Kenya Andrea Dyck, Curator of Contemporary Cultures, The Manitoba Museum Andrea Dyck received her Master’s Degree in History from the University of Winnip…

A quick summary of the Singing Wells Project News

…ten to the Nyatiti for the first time with your eyes closed. It is a kick drum. It is a snare drum. It is a bass. It is guitar. Listen: Watch a real drummer. Watch someone that drums through their souls. And ask yourself whether East African Music is relevant. 7. Singing Wells is about bringing you groups and sounds that are ready for prime time – someone just needed to give them a microphone. Here are the Otacho Young Stars…. Why aren’t they the…

73,603 views on YouTube News

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We are celebrating today because we are really pleased that so many people are enjoying the music videos on the Singing Wells YouTube channel……73,603 views and still counting! It’s not a meaningful number in itself (like a nice round 100,000 – our next target) but it does mean more and more people are finding us and enjoying what we are all about – bringing the more traditional sounds of East Africa to an enthusiastic audience. Thanks for watchin…

Victoria’s reflections on field trip to Northern Uganda News

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…ur history, your stories unfurl We capture your memories to share with the world You travel a road and must keep on walking And peddling the wheels that keep your world turning Years distance the pain of the conflict and strife Your music your saviour, it once saved your life So sing us your story and dance us your life Your history’s a melody, you keep it alive Sing us your memories, there’s volumes to tell And we’ll capture your story, we are Si…

The Birara Batwa Community Story

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…Singing Wells project is to make traditional East Africa music relevant to today’s artists and audiences. We want to celebrate and promote the music heritage of East Africa in a contemporary context. We are doing this with ‘Influences’. We were staying at The Traveller’s Rest Hotel in Kisoro and the staff kindly allowed us to set up the studio under the verandah and it was there that we recorded our first ‘Influences’ session – a fusion of Batwa m…

The Influences Series from Singing Wells News

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…a new generation of musicians and fans who might not consider it relevant today. So, we have developed the Influences series – a fusion of traditional and contemporary styles. Each time the Singing Wells team embarks on a field recording visit we are joined by a talented musician who works with us on ‘Influences’ songs. They work with us in the field and also in the Ketebul Music studios in Nairobi to produce this new material. We believe our Inf…

Listen to more ‘Influences’ tracks from Singing Wells News

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…visit to Western Kenya to record Luo music. Experts on the traditional instruments the orutu and nyangile, we loved this group and invited them to record at the Ketebul Music studio a few months later. Here they are performing ‘Mr Manager’ accompanied by session musicians and also Winyo with backing vocals. (Click here for blog post) During our field visit to Northern Uganda we travelled with Akello, a singer/songwriter originally from an Acholi v…

A recording studio which fits into the back of an SUV Story

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…icrophones we have chosen are industry standard models used in studios the world over but, most likely, not seen in the villages of East Africa. The equipment has been carefully selected so it can easily fit into a few holdalls and four rugged peli-cases which protect everything while in transit, whether it be on a plane from Nairobi or in the back of the van on a bumpy track to one of the remote villages we are heading for. We are adding to our e…

Meet our ‘Influences’ artists News

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…grew, she has later shared stages with such greats as Uganda’s own Susan Kerunen in a girls group called “Anyira” a luo word meaning “the girls”, led by Miss Susan Kerunen herself. After she then emerged as a professional backup singer with her first song being “Aluru” from Uganda’s own Michael Ouma’s debut album, still in the same light she joined Miss Tshila in a girls band called “Tshila and the Diamond’s”, still in this journey she worked with…