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In 1994 I was on a exploration trip in West-Africa (Ghana – Benin – Burkina Faso – Mali – Ivory Coast). My friends and musical collabortators from Benin (Omer Affognon, Isaac Atégbo & Eugene Gnanhoui) introduced me to some secrets of Voodoo, an animistic religion in Benin, the cradle of Vodoun. From a collection of more than 400 Vodoun songs we picked nine songs and recorded them unplugged at the compound of the family of Omer Affognon in Porto-Novo. We also decided to record video footage in order to create a video installation with pictures of sacred and original Vodoun spots and places. Along our production I’ve met the Vodoun priest Dangbété in his village Atchoupka and the magic doctor Kilokanmi. In Aguégué, a pile dwellings village in the sea I was warmly welcomed and introduced to the Vodoun places. Women in traditional dresses welcomed me with dance and songs.

Omer Affognon: Vox, Klélé, Gbon, Shaker
Isaac Atégbo: Vox, Stick, Klélé
Eugene Gnanhoui: Vox, Gbon, Klélé, Stick
Genetic druGs: Radio, Arrangement
Kilokanmi: Magic doctor
Dangbeté: Vodoun priest

IGBO = bush
Those who live in live bush
lgnore what happens in towns – vice versa
Quick. quick
Return to your place
Porto-Novo directly
Cotonou / Nikki / Nikki / Bemberéké /
Djougou / Parakou / Abhomey / Ouidah /
Savalou / Save / Cotonou /
Cotonou / Malanville / Porto-Novo /
Adjaché / Porto-Novo / Adjaché
languages: Yoruba, Bariba, French

PAPA ZIBOTEY = Irresponsible person who treats everyone bad
WODE = do something
Why do you prostitude yourself ?
This is not your dignity
Be proud of your ancestors
Try to do something in your life
My brothers
Try to do something
languages: Fon, Mina, Yoruba
AHOUHAN = Jealousy
I have neither money, clothes, a wife, a car, nor children
lnspite of all this
People are jealous of a poor man like me
language: Goun
TOLIVE = incorrectability
Why does my father punish me by refusing food ?
This is not my destiny
lt’s pride that kills us
lt’s disobediance that provokes divorce
lf you beat on a dog’s head
He will quickly go back to his masters house
languages: Yoruba, Goun, French
Papa Zibotey has returned
He cries and sings
Shouts and beats
Like a dog which has been beaten and barks
Now everybody knows he is back
languages: Fon, Goun, Yoruba

AGO BODE = code for introducing Zangbéto voodoo
Don’t finish eating the bol with Gari (= food)
Without thinking of your father, our father
    secret language
Everything is prepared
Be ready
Even if you are coming from the north
To welcome the voodoo
He is coming already
    secret language
languages: Yoruba, Goun, secret language

VODOUNCHE = my voodoo, my fetish
Oh my ancestors power
Strength of my father
Shield of my mother
I worship you
I will worship you all my life
Because you protect me
Any way I am
Anywhere I go
I worship you my fetish
A thin woman cannot be the pride of a rich man
lf you touch me, if you don’t touch me
lt’s the lost Gari (= food) that hurts me so bad
languages: Goun, Tori

AYE CHORO = life is difficult
What kind of life do you live ?
Eating, dressing, being rich without problems
Even love is always a big fight
Oh this life is difficult. obscur
Brothers and sisters
Pay attention to your life
Be generous and honest
You got it?
language: Goun

TOFFA = king of Porto-Novo, To = town, Fa = peace
Only paradise is the real place
Because in this life we are all passengers
Says King Toffa
Swearing by the magic power he has
He will die in his native place
On the market day of Djégan
Ancestors sent me to inform you about the war
Which destroyed the region of Kétou, Toffo and other villages
lt remains only the region of Abéokuta to conquer
Then war is finished and we go back home
They sent me to you Ségla = (strong spirit)
To inform you about this
language: Goun

ELÉDJIRÉ = twins, = name of the fetish Egun
We arrived Elédjiré
Even if you are hiding on the top of the market
We are coming
    cries of dead persons and audience
We are yanman yanman police
language: Yoruba

OH BABA = popular song from Togo, song of slaves who came back from Brazil to Ouidah
Play well my people
Play it well for me
Many people will come to watch and dance with us
Oh Baba
Baba I like you
Let’s go to the feast of our ancestors
The feast of Abounignan
Long live Gayoyo = grandfather
Long live Gayaya = grandmother
languages: Mina, Portugese

02Papa Zibotey5:05
03Ago Bode4:57
04Magic Doctor0:44
05Vodounche 4:21
06Aye Choro3:24
07Atchoupka / Aguégué1:12
08Toffa / Elédjiré4:53
09Oh Baba3:20
10Ceremonial greetings from Radio Batonon2:16

© Pharma Tunes 1997     LC 18824