INSTRUMENTAL July 28, 1972 - 34A Mbira (Thom) Peno

02 Track 2.mp3

Recording #34A

Place of Recording: Peno/Tierlul

Date of Recording: July 28, 31, 1972


Informant: Agwa Alemo

Date of Transcript: March 24, 1973

1 000 Thumb piano

Information: Song between Gilo River and Gok people. Gilo river used to insult Gok people back and forth. One young boy from Gilo river married a beautiful girl in Gok because Gok boys were jealous because of the beautiful girls, they produced this song against Gilo river people. This is an instrumental piece with no voice. Circular form. Repetitions. This song is the one that led the Anuaks to the modern dancing. What Odiel is doing. With the bottles, etc. (Gallas and Amhara’s really like this kind of music.

Text: The song goes like this: the girls named AKOTI we greet you. The boys who married AKOTI was ANYELA. A person with evil eyes. This boy is a person with evil eyes and is not fit to marry this AKOTI. His village has mosquitoes that will not let a person sleep. A very bad village. The Gilo river people replied, GOK is the place where there is no fish or meat to eat. Where there is no Nile perch. The Nile perch has fungus. The Gok people eat this. Fungus – or mold. Insult each other back and forth. Gilo river is a bad village because we share the mosquito net with the prime minister together. Gilo river people replied, the chief of Gok said, don’t take my teeth out because I will not have any teeth to eat rats with. Continue with insults.

2 047 Thumb piano.

Information: Changed to a different song. Notice the cadence between songs. Performer is very good.

Text: When a boy fell in love with a girl, he will send a message to the girl, and he will say to the messenger, come back with a good reply. Repeats. Come back with ah good reply. Saying, tell her that you are greeted by your lover. He is expecting to come bk to come back with a good result from you.

3 076 Thumb Piano

Text: Incomplete. Admiration of the government of the Anyanyas the government of the Anyanya is like a flood.

4 095 Pitches of the Thom

Information: Each one repeated 3 times. From left side to the right.

5 140 Agwaga.

Information: Solo girl singer in Tierlul. July 31, 1972. Agwaga from Gok Depach. Recalling the village as the previous one.

Text: Our village became as in former time when OGWOL was leader. (When he was a leader. We having a system, for example, if I smoke, today I don’t have tobacco. I would like to have tobacco today, he will bring many packages of tobacco and put the bullet in the gun, say that no you are in need of tobacco, you better finish all these packages, if you finish, I will not kill you. If you don’t, I will kill you, I you say I am very hungry and I need something to eat, he will order his wife to make a big bowl full for you and if you finish, he will not kill you but if you don’t, he will kill you. Was he teaching the people a lesson or not? I’m not sure. He was a chief. The people feared him, did not ask him. People feared him, would never say anything in his hearing.

6 243 Obero (Achenya)

Information: I’m Okiech from Gok. (In Oberos asking for gift. Admiring the people that he is asking from. Always found in an Obero) this man was away from Gok, when he came, he sang this song. (Men and boys have their own animals. The ladies do not have their own but take the names of their husbands.

Text: Mentioning the names of the people. To those who asking them for a gift. He mentions the names of their wives. He mentions ones of his best friends in the village. She said, my animal is working slowly, very slowly and I’m Okiech from Gok Depach. Probably referring to the lizard or turtle.

7 333

Information: When Gok people swore not to eat a certain animal. (Translated before) Mentions the one who was in the parliament.

Text: Saying, when you were elected to be in the parliament, old people were unhappy, they were not glad. When we killed an animal that we swore for, the part we are going to have will be heard in many countries and pictures will be taken to RUSSIA. My animal carries its own house and sheets or blanket and moves slowly. (Turtle).

8 388

Information: When the generation swore not to eat meat or drink beer, they will select known man in the village as their commander. The Gok people selected a man called DHOGO. The man selected would lead them in many ideas how to behave and how to hunt the animal. There are those who oppose the generation.

Text: We don’t think they are going to hunt the elephant because they are a weak generation. Those who joined with the Ethiopian government were supposed to be killed one by one. When we go to look for an elephant, we didn’t have provisions with us. When they went, they killed a big elephant and caught a small one and asked the question, where will our small elephant be taken. The answer: it will be taken to Addis or US. Repeats.

9 436 Dudbul.

Information: Another voice. Soft woman’s voice unaccompanied. Sometimes they mention names according to the generation where the mother is from. If there is a permanent large tree, in the village, everybody from that called by that village will be admired to the big tree. If I’m or my mother is from that village, I will be named after that tree also. According to the animals the animal which you are named after cannot mention exactly but they will mention it indirectly. They have 3 or 4 types: 1st named after your animal, second after your mother or a big tree in your mothers’ village, 3rd, after your grandfather and grandmother, 4th after your uncle. If these people have different animals, you will be named after them so to admire a person in all directions. This is what they do always in Dudbul songs As well as Obero also. All this song mentions the names of the people according to their animal’s

Text: Mentioning the names of the people according to their animals. As a proverb: the lady was named after the turtle. If I want to call her, I would not call her as a tortoise I will as, an animal which carries house and bed sheets together.) General idea sung of the same age generation. Lady who sang this song said, her animal passed from JUBA and if translated, means an airplane. Her animal is an airplane. She mentioned when ants build an ant hill, moves slowly around the ant hill. When it sees a person, it will put its head in. Again, mentioning the turtle.

10 521 Obero.

Information: Another term in Anuak, If I’m detained or going to do something, I will say you take my place. I’m coming back soon. If I say there for an hour, when I come back, I will be asked, where did you stay. I’ll say I bumped my leg. When you get bumped you want to fall, because you’re about to fall down you just went on.

Text: Mentioning his friend and admiring him. His friend is named after something which grows more quickly than others: cows. People can be named after their cows according to different colors. In this part, they sing they mention the name of a person named after a cow which has gray brown color. Mentioning the name of his friends. Requesting them indirectly telling them like a message that you tell all my friends that I didn’t get money to pay for my wife. So, they can hear and help. Singer mentions in the song, that he was confused in his own village, if he wasn’t, he would have gone to beg for a cow in another village. (Lineage, putting people and grouping them in a song according to their lineage. I have to go and visit this lineage so that they can give me something.) Last lady having… It has built its house in the border and sometimes the flood takes its house away and moves slowly and moves slowly. This is shouted after the song. Last lady is still mentioning the same thing. It passed from Juba it passed from Juba.

11 665 Obero.

Information: Solo woman. Voice scratchy. From Pokomo. These who are living on the Baro river they have two villages. One can be on the river and one can be back from the river. The singer always is confused because of the two chiefs. This man is explaining or expressing his confusion between chiefs if he sang a song, he would never get a price from any of the chiefs. A dollar demotes everything down. If they sing songs, they will be given dollars. This is not helpful. Then they can consume the money immediately. Before they were getting demoui or cow.

Text: Said, everybody has heard the secrets of Pokwomo, when we fought or when our chief agreed to fight. The singer said, I’m really confused what to do about all the chiefs, because all the songs I sang, even though they accepted it, nobody will consider it among those two chiefs. A man in the village called, OPOL. I give chickens to Amhara but they didn’t want chickens but they wanted all my secret to be out. Because what I gave was given for nothing, he will die because of that. Their car left when we fought with them. And that may be the curse of God. Mentions those of the war at that time. Singer said, that we always ask the chief because of our poorness. Those who sing songs, they always ask the chief because the chief has money more than any in the village. When my money is borrowed by somebody, if that person doesn’t want to pay me back, I’ll go and ask but he said, the song I sing I will never go and ask for the money to be given to me. As the money which has been borrowed from somebody, Mentioning the chief and how he rules the village. Our village was destroyed by the Ethiopian government but it was not because we had made a mistake. Mentions (In our area, if you fight with the government or kill somebody, you will be in the area, for a long time and no one would show you to the government. The chief who fought the government was there around the villages thought the government was looking for him. He was there. They are still looking for him. Mentioned, those soldiers who fought with us was not to protect themselves, they fought because of the salary. The money they got. I’m always supporting the chief because he I poor. (Otheti is the singer-composer. Not singing in this version but is the maker of the song) Mentioning his wife who he missed because of his poorness. Said, during the last 10-15 years, poor people in the area get the money for marriage from the chief. But by now, there roaming around because of the dollar influence. The chief who fought the government did not want to kill many soldiers. He used to walk at night around. Encouraged his people. Which excited the people. I’ asking you about the price and I’m not expecting to miss the price.