Black History Culture : The evolution of the banjo from Africa to America

Discussion in 'Black History - Culture - Panafricanism' started by Aluku, Jan 23, 2015.

  1. Aluku

    Aluku Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    The story of the Banjo underscores for me the reason why I started this blog. It shows pretty clearly, in my opinion, how interconnected the culture and history of the African diaspora is in the New World.

    Thanks to John Gabriel Stedman we have a good idea of what instruments the slaves in Suriname played. Stedman was a mercenary, hired to fight the maroons in Suriname during the mid 18th century.

    Here is a drawing from Stedman of Instruments he encountered in Suriname in 1776:
    [​IMG]

    Could this be the history of the banjo?

    It may be a surprise to some but the banjo is of African origin. The Banjo was in fact a common instrument among the early African American traveling Blues bands.
    [​IMG]

    There is an instrument with a striking resemblance of a banjo, and is likely what the early USA banjo looked like among the early slaves there. It was called a bania in Suriname.


    Image from Rijksmuseum showing a Bania from 1771:

    [​IMG]

    Below you will see two great musicians from Suriname holding the actual bania, Robby Favery, and Ronald Snijders. Robby Favery explains that the bania was made from a tree calabas, a type of gourd:


    Here is the video of the actual, over 200 year old instrument, which is stored in the Rijks museum in Leiden, Netherlands:



    Below is a video of African American Banjo player named Cedric Watson who plays a gourd banjo:



    The video below is of Senegal’s, Sana Ndiaye, playing a traditional akonting. Note the striking similarities to the style of banjo player Cedric Watson from the first video:



    More stories about the African Diaspora in The Americas





     
  2. Clyde C Coger Jr

    Clyde C Coger Jr going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Makes sense, thanks for sharing ...


    Why is there a Fear of Creativity????
    Discussion in 'Black People Open Forum' started by Ankhur, Nov 8, 2010

    ... And the banjo hahaha the banjo is a Africa drum "wiki says it" with strings over it ... take a closer look at it.....
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banjo

    Same for the African drum... it was used and it was traditional ... but the ancient people had not clue that it would make it to other countries as different instruments such as the banjo...

    Or that the twelve string instrument Africans or AB Original people used would eventually go around the world as the acoustic guitar or guitar period...

    http://destee.com/index.php?threads/why-is-there-a-fear-of-creativity.64171/page-3#post-667521

    ...


     
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