Black Music Month: Celebrating Our Gullah/Geechee Song
by Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation (www.QueenQuet.com) from De Conch June 2013 Edition
Tenk Gawd fa de song we sing an de joy wha disya bring.
Tenk Gawd fa de ancestas souls wha bring out de songs wha keep we.
Tenk Gawd da de song an ting still da gwine out frum de islandts een de sea.
“Black Music Month” is one of my favorite times of the year given that as Marvin sang, I am “just like music!” I have been dancing since I can remember myself. I have been singing since I realized that I sounded good to others and not just to myself! I get the singing honest since if you start up a song in my family, all you hear coming back at you is harmony! I send out love to the O’Jays for the soundtrack of my life, “I love music!”
Because of my love for music and the creative energy that it takes to make it, I salute Huff and Gamble for being two of the visionaries behind the founding of Black Music Month back in 1979. The Black Music Association sought to insure the marketing of Black music which would increase the economic empowerment of Black musical artists. Given that I have always sought to support the economic empowerment of my own community, I still purchase music while others tell me that I could just as soon download it for free. While I greatly appreciate iTunes, there is nothing like a DJ and music enthusiast having her own collection with the jackets to the CDs and albums (Yes, I still have vinyl too!). Within these pages were lyrics that I learned growing up and the names of the musical creators. So, this is why I still celebrate Gullah/Geechee artists like Motown Funk Brother James Jamerson, originator of Gullah/Geechee Hardcore Warrior Soul, Tamar-Kali, and those that sang and continue to sing the spirituals in the Gullah language.
June begins an annual celebration for me and the fans on the Gullah/Geechee Nation Facebook fan page which leads us onward to the Gullah/Geechee Nation International Music & Movement Festival™ (www.gullahgeechee.info) where each and every year we celebrate keeping the drum in hand and in our hearts. This is where we bring together a range of musical styles and harmonies and educate people on how these sounds kept our community over the generations. Yes, music is an on-going celebration for us!
Throughout Black Music Month, I encourage you to tune in to “Gullah/Geechee Riddim Radio” (www.blogtalkradio.com/gullahgeechee) to hear the stories of our songs and those that created them and the history and context of the times in which these sounds evolved. May these sounds cause you to dance in celebration of Black music!
Tune in to these Black Music Month pieces from “Gullah/Geechee Riddim Radio:” https://gullahgeecheenation.com/2013/05/19/st-helenas-song-from-candice-glover-to-capitol-hill/
Also, sign this petition to have the legendary James Jamerson placed in the South Carolina Hall of Fame:
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- Tagged: Black Music Month, cultural heritage, culture, Geechee, Gullah, Gullah/Geechee Nation, heritage, James Jamerson, music, Queen Quet, spirituals, Tamar-Kali, traditions