Agwagas July 13, 1972 - 12B Tierlul
Place of Recording: Tierlul
Date of Recording: July 18, 1972
Informant: Paul Abulla
Date of Transcript: August 3, 1972; Direct conversation
1 000 Conversation: The first part of this tape deals with conversation with the composer of songs (an older man) heard in Tierlul. His method of making songs and why he was hindered in singing his best for us on a previous date.
2 044 Dancing Song.
Information: Written long ago.
Text: Mentions the names of his friends and the ladies also. Mentions the names of those who gave him something. Asking people, better you to give me a dollar. A big liar among us running to the people saying don’t pay this man but he has no money. Mentions the name of a beautiful girl, saying that she is walking like god. Continues to mention the names of the people.
3 128 Dancing Song.
Information: Very old song.
Text: We have no ugly people in our group. Mentions the names of the people. You must marry the beautiful girls. People are coming. His friend married a beautiful girl. My friend married a beautiful girl and he mentions her name. You must give something to the song makers to let him have something.
4 213 Dancing Song.
Information: Mentions the names of the people. (In this area, those of bodyguards fight with those of the younger generation with sticks)
Text: In this song, they are boasting, jo Burra are boasting. Continues to mention the names of those in the jo Burra.
5 284 Dancing song.
Text: Mentions the names of the people in the jo Burra.
6 314 Dancing Song.
Text: Against a certain girl. I was jilted by this girl. I’m rich man. All the people in my group are handsome.
7 336 Agwaga.
Information: Some people from other areas will come from various parts of the tribe and come and stay together. These people spoil you because they want to confuse you.
Text: Mentions the names of the people in the fighting. We are people of guns (spears). We are not afraid. He came with the people of his father. You are spoiled by different people. We have to make Agwaga for the chief. Mentions the names of the people. You people from that side, you must give us a call.
ANUAK Project: FIELD NOTES – July 13, 1972
Retyped: June 8, 2019
2:30 Left Pokwo by boat traveling downstream for 30 minutes to the relatively large and attractive town of Illea. There we walked through sawgrass and corn above and over our heads up to the village which is a way away from the river. We sat down as is our custom with the men under a tree who brought out skins. After some conversation, Paul brought out the points of our visit and coming visits regarding the taping of their musical literature. As we had visited the chief several weeks before, this was not new to them and they readily agreed to our return. They suggested that to start next week on Monday would be preferable to our beginning immediately. To this we agreed. We left Illea at about 3:00 and headed back up stream, stopping to see the chief at another village, Ebago.
4:00 We stepped ashore, and were led to the elders who seemed very disposed to the idea. They then suggested that perhaps we would like to hear them sing immediately. To this I agreed and quickly prepared our equipment. The children who had been listening to the discussion now became a most enthusiastic and well singing chorus with a very strong and quite excellent leader (an older man, 50). After singing one song, the leader sat back assuming he was finished. I then replayed the tape for him which entranced him. He then immediately asked if we would like another. And another. The first and third songs were particularly well sung. A second man then volunteered to lead a short song, which he did… this war song was accompanied with mock attacks by several men on the periphery of the surrounding group now grown to about 100 people. As is seemingly characteristic of their singing, they sing with great power, full voice, intense and original rhythm, wearing themselves out…giving all they have. Several were active in displaying acts of pantomime, with expressive facial and hand movements, driving home points and giving attention with their eyes to me or to the leader. One lady in particular had the attention of the leader and he of her, and they exchanged a kind of dialog. The drummers using only the two smaller drums, again displayed originality and rhythmic drive.
We were asked to provide money for something to drink which we refused saying that we would provide when we were finished with the project.
5:00 We left for Pokwo. Stopped to pick up our cook who was getting corn and continued on our way returning home by 5:45.