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									Lecture 2:
Xangô, Ossanha, Oxum,Yemanjá
Exú and Pomba Gira in popular
Music

Vesa Matteo Piludu
Helsinki




Department of Comparative Religion and Institute for Art Research
University of Helsinki
Afro-American religions


 These religions have a complicate theology and pantheon of
  possessing divinities
 Are strongly focused on ritual trance, dances and rhythmic music
 Are demonized in Hollywood cinema and in certain aspects of
  American popular cultures

 Their influence on popular music is constant
 At the musical level
 At the lyrical level

 Politically, the inclusion of references to Afro-American religion in the
  lyrics are clear indicators of interest in Afro-American cultures and/or
  social issues

 Attention: not only Afro-Americans write about Afro-American
  religions!
Xangô, Benin, Africa
Vinicius de Moraes – Baden Powell:
Canto de Ossanha

 Amigo sinhô                    Friend, old boy
  Saravá                         Saravá
  Xangô me mandou lhe dizer      Xangô send me to say to you

  Se é canto de Ossanha          If it is Song of Ossanha
  Não vá!                        Don’t go!
  Que muito vai se arrepender    You will regret it!

  Pergunte pr'o seu Orixá        Ask to your orixá
  O amor só é bom se doer        The love is good only
                                 if it hurts!

                                 Xangô, opposed to the
                                  herbalist Ossanha, is here
                                  represented as a protector of
                                  passionate and brave love,
                                  including risks of pain and
                                  sorrow
Xangô: justice and wifes

 Xangô has 3 wifes: Oia-Iansã (storm), Oxum (river) and Obá
  (a she-warrior, also connected to a river)
 There is a strong rivality between Oxum and Obá

 Xangô is the loverboy of the candomblé pantheon and the
  protector of love passions


 As other gods of thunder, Xango is connected to justice and
  he is a punisher of thieves and evil-doers

 In Africa house stroked by lighting is considered marked by
  the rave of Xangô
Santana: Jingo

 http://www.youtube.com/wat
  ch?v=Rc4vZHf5iSQ
Galn Costa and Milton Nascimento:
Voz do Tambor (Fonseca/Bastos)
LP: Aquele frevo axé

 Fala por nós a voz do tambor       The voice of the drums speaks for
 Voz que trae o meu amor             us
                                     The voice that takes my love

   As cahoeiras                       The rapids
   Céu onde está Olorum               Sky where Olorum lives
   Toda a beleza                      All the beauty
   Agradecer a Oxum                   Will please Oxum

   Luz das estrelas                   Starlight
   Agradecer a Xango                  Will please Xango
   O bem da vida                      The joy of life
   O bem da vida vem no bater do      Come from drumming
    tambor
                                     Olorum: God of skies
                                     Xango: god of thunder
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=    Oxum: goddess of
    EaNba-3Wy8Y
                                     Free translation:
                                        Vesa Matteo Piludu
Zeca Baleiro: Mamae Oxum (traditional, Brazil)

 Iemanjá Celebration – Mamãe Oxum
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qDi89NTy-
   Nk
                                               I’ve seen Mother Oxúm in a
                                                waterfall
 Dances of Oxum:                              Sitting on the river’s shores
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qhcsJ0-
   4s54&feature=related
                                               Picking flowers, oh yeah
 Zeca Baleiro: Mamãe Oxum                       Picking flowers, oh yeah
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PkctGlCA_t
   w
                                                 Picking flowers
                                                 To fascinate her congá (altar)
 Eu vi mamãe Oxum na cachoeira
   Sentada na beira do rio
                                               It’s the sea sand illuminated by
   Colhendo lírio lirulê                        the sky,
   Colhendo lírio lirulá
   Colhendo lírio
                                               Sea sand illuminated by the sky,
   Pra enfeitar o seu congá                    In the sea sand, the sea is sand
                                               Full tide, oh, the sea shores!
   Ê areia do mar que o céu serena
   Ê areia do mar que o céu serenou
   Na areia do mar mar é areia
   Maré cheia ê mar marejou
Oxúm in the Fall
Oxum

        Divinity of fresh, running
         waters
        Waterfalls

        Sensual, feminine, vain
        But also protective and full
         of compassion
        She is full of strength of will

        connected to childbirth and
         Ifá divination

        Symbol: golden mirror,
         abebé
        Colour: golden yellow,
         copper
Oxum

 Cd Festa da Musica do
  Gantois 2

 track 1
 Rhythm: ijexá

 Ore yê yê ô!

 The dance represent both
  the movement of a flowing
  river and sensual femininity

 The divinity is looking at the
  mirror and taking care of her
  jewellery and hairs
Oxum
Oxum
Oxum, Brazil
Oxum

 In Nigeria she is the divinity
  of the river Oxum

 According to a legend she
  was offended because the
  male orixás organized
  reunions without women

 As a revenge, she make all
  the women barren and the
  all the orixas’ projects failed

 At the end all, she is invited
  to the reunions, and the
  things turn back to the
  normality
Gal Costa (Author: Dorival Caymmy, Brazil):
Dois de Fevereiro, LP: Gal Costa canta Caymmy

 Dia dois de fevereiro
    Dia de festa no mar
    Eu quero ser o primeiro
    Pra salvar Yemanjá

    Eu mandei um bilhete pra ela
    Pedindo para ela me ajudar
    Ela então me respondeu
    Que eu tivesse paciência de esperar
    O presente que eu mandei pra ela
    De cravos e rosas vingou

 The Second of February
    It’s a day of celebration on the sea
   I want to be the first one
    To hail Yemanjá
   I send her a paper
    Asking for help
   She answered
    To have patience and wait
   I gave her a present
    Done by carnation and roses
Iemanjá - Yemanjá

 Lady of the seas and
  oceans, salted water

 Both calm and stormy
 Fertility, childbirth
 protector of family
 Is considered the mother of
  all the orixás

 Colours: silver white and
  turquoise

 Symbol: silver mirror, abebé
Yemanjá

 Cd Festa da Musica do
  Gantois 2
 track 4

 Various rhythms

 Odu iyá!

 The dance represents the
  movements of the sea, the
  waves and calm femininity
African legend: back to the sea

 She is the daughter of Olookun, divinity of the deep seas

 His husband is completely drunk and pokes fun at the
  impressive dimensions of the breasts of Yemanjá

 Offended, she beats the ground with her foot and transforms
  herself into a river, that goes back to the sea
Procession of Iemanjá: Second of February
Procession of Jemanjá
On DVD: Carlinhos Brown,
ao vivo no festival de verao Salvador


 Track 20: Carlinhos Brown in the festival of Yemanjá
 Track 19: Charles Ylé

 Track 12: Political – mystic discourse

 Track 6: Toda Paz
Rappa (Brazil): Lado B Lado A

   Se eles sao Exu                      If they are Exú
   Eu sou Yemanjá                       I’m Yemanjá
   Se elem matam bicho                  If they kill a beast
   Eu tomo banho de mar                 I swim in the sea
   (…)                                  (…)

   Nao abro mao da mitologia negra    I’m not renouncing to the Black
   Pra dizer:                          Mythology
   Eu nao pareco com com voce         To say:
   (…)                                I’m not like you!
 Eu soh guerreiro, sou trabalhador    I’m a warrior, a worker
    Eh todo dia vou encarar            Fighting every day
    Com Fé em Deus e na minha          With faith in God and in my
    batalha (...)                         battle (…)

                                       Exú = crossroads’ god
                                       Yemanjá= Sea goddess
                                       Free translation: Vesa Matteo
                                          Piludu
Exú (Salvador, Brazil)
Exu’s colors: red and black
Exú - Carybe

 Traditional trickster
 Is uncontrollable, unpredictable
 But it is possible to ask him
  favours

 Dominantly male, but also
  female, strongly human and
  emotive, full of desires

 It is dangerous for his human-
  like behaviour … but isn’t evil

 He is the mediator, the bridge
  between humans and divinities

 He must called before all the
  others divinities to avoid
  “confusion”
Exú

 Exu (known as Eleggua in Cuba and Legba in Haiti) is the owner of
  the roads and doors in this world.

 He is the repository of axé (life energy).

 The colours red and black or white and black are his and codify his
  contradictory nature.

 In particular, Exu stands at the crossroads of the human and the
  divine, as he is a child-like messenger between the two worlds

 Exú is also connected to sacrifices and offer
Eshú l'arôye!


 If Exú is respected, he ”opens the doors” and it is helpful

 If isn’t considered, he could cause every kinds of catastrophes

 He isn’t only good or bad, it depends on the situations
Exú ceremony - padé

 The exú ceremony is called padé
 It consist of an offer of vegetals to Exú

 … and it is performed before the real ceremony,
  to avoid “confusion” during the ritual


 CD Filhos de Gandhi, track 3: “sire de exú”
Exú (Salvador, Brazil)
Vinicius de Moraes – Baden Powell:
Lamento de Exú



 The ”cry” of Exú is interpreted with a feeling similar to the blues
 Pomba Gira in the Macumba of Rio

 In Rio de Janeiro, Exú is more
  Devil – looking and has a
  female version or counterpart:
  Pomba Gira or Pombo Gira

 sexuality, and desire

 Pomba Gira is viewed as a
  sensual woman who is
  insatiable

 She is often portrayed as a
  gipsy

 Pomba Gira is often invoked by
  those who seek aid in matters
  of love and sexuality
Festa de Pombo Gira das Almas e Maria Mulambo

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fv_NwgjuY7I&feature=related
Tecno and Rap - Exú


http://www.youtube.
 com/watch?v=MqX
 QavT72s8

 Theo Werneck and
 Paula Pretta's music
Martinho da Vila: Sincretismo religioso
Singer from Rio in favor of syncretism

 Ê, ô, todos os povos são filhos do    All the peoples are God’s sons
  senhor!
  Deus está em todo lugar.              God is everywhere!
 Nas mãos que criam, nas bocas         In the hands that create, in the
  que cantam, nos corpos que             mouths that song, in the bodies
  dançam, nas relações amorosas,         that dance, in the love relations,
  no lazer sadio, no trabalho            in the healthy and in the honest
  honesto.                               work
 Onde está Deus? - Em todo lugar!      Where is God? Everywhere!

 Olorum, Jeová, Oxalá, Alah,           Olorum, Jeová, Oxalá, Alah,
   N`Zambi. . . Jesus!                     N`Zambi. . . Jesus!

 E o espírito Santo? É Deus!             And the Holy Spirit? Is Jesus!
   Salve sincretismo religioso! -         Hail the syncretism! Hail!
   Salve!                                 Who’s Omolú, people?
   Quem é Omulu, gente? - São             Saint Lazarus!
   Lázaro!                                Iansã? - Saint Barbara!
   Iansã? - Santa Bárbara!                Ogum? – Saint George!
   Ogum? - São Jorge!
Mãe Stella of Oxossi (Salvador) against the
syncretism: Iansã is not Santa Barbara

 “The catholic saints and images have their value. We do
  not want to stop having faith in Saint Barbara. Sure, an
  elevated spirit.

 But we know that Iansã is another energy, it is not St.
  Barbara.

 Religion is not something to be imposed, it depends of the
  consciousness of everyone.
 But we want respect with the Candomblé.

 It is a non-sense, for example, to give food to Iansa at
  St.Barbara's feet. It has no meaning.

 The food is of Iansa, it is another energy, completely
  different of what it is St.Barbara, do you understand?”

								
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