Yoruba Singers - Fighting For Survival
An excerpt from the liner notes by Uchenna Ikonne on the Yoruba Singers:
Many years ago, the Africans arrived in the Guianas in chains. The Akan people from the region today known as Ghana were the very first, setting shackled feet upon the South American colony in 1621. More would follow over the next two hundred years, plucked from the nations of Western and Central Africa: the Kongo, the Abuna, the Yagba, the Igbo, the Fula, the Effa. Also the Aku, Egba, Ondo and Ijesa, clans who would be collectively referred to as the Yoruba.
In the intervening centuries, the Yoruba have become noteworthy as one of the few African cultures to survive the cultural erasure of chattel slavery and colonialism virtually intact, putting down new roots in the New World. The Yoruba culture, language and religion have traveled from their source in present-day Nigeria and Republic of Benin to become Santeria in Cuba, Puerto Rico and Dominican Republic; Candomble in Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay; Trinidad Orisha in Trinidad and Tobago; and specialized cults for Yoruba gods like Shango in Guyana.
Having remained continuously active since 1971, the Yoruba Singers are the longest-running musical group in Guyana. Emerging from a music scene mostly dominated by slick, commercial entertainment, the Yoruba Singers brought a new dimension to Guyana popular music, cooking up a potent stew of afrocentric vibes, steeped in a committed invocation of the country’s African heritage.
The group’s magnum opus is the 1981 album Fighting for Survival. The album sums up the group’s first decade of operation, serving up a heavy mix of calypso, jazzy funk, reggae and afrobeat. Cultures of Soul reissues it for the first time on vinyl, offering you the listener the opportunity to experience some of the deepest grooves the Caribbean has to offer!
Highlights from the album:
Bleeding with Hate
Fighting for Survival
Drums Make the World Go Round
Me Selwyn Buddy Clyde