188 Pages
English

The Politics of Everyday Life in Gikuyu Popular Musice of Kenya 1990-2000

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While probing the politics of everyday in Gikuyu popular music, the main thrust of this book is to unpack the representation of daily struggles through music. Depending mainly on the lyrics of the songs, the study also combines both the textual and the contextual analysis of the music. Music here is studied both as a text, and as an aspect of popular culture. The decade 1990-2000 in Kenya provides two contrasting political developments, which directly impacted on the ordinary Kenyan; firstly, the extremes of the country’s one-party rule were at the peak until when multi-party democracy was re-introduced. This ushered in a new era, but with antecedents in one-party rule, where service delivery was below par and economic mismanagement, corruption, assassinations and detentions continued unabated. It is in this contrasting environment that popular arts proliferated as a way of countering the repressed freedom of expression. This book, therefore, looks at how the Gikuyu musicians reacted and responded to these social and political realities in their songs. Music is discussed as an essential site for creation, re-creation and negotiation of the various forms of identities.

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Published 29 December 2013
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EAN13 9789966028471
Language English
Document size 4 MB

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hile probing the politics of everyday in Gĩkũyũ popular music, the main thrust of this book is to unpack the representation of daily struggles through music. Depending mainly on the lyrics of the songs, the study also combines both the textual and the contextual analysis of the music. Music here is studied both as a text, and as an aspect of popular culture. The decade 1990-2000 in Kenya provides two contrasting political developments, which directly impacted on the ordinary Kenyan; îrstly, the extremes of the country’s one-party rule were at the peak until when multi-party democracy was re-introduced. This ushered in a new era, but with antecedents in one-party rule, where service delivery was below par and economic mismanagement, corruption, assassinations and detentions continued unabated. It is in this contrasting environment that popular arts proliferated as a way of countering the repressed freedom of expression. This book, therefore, looks at how the Gĩkũyũ musicians reacted and responded to these social and political realities in their songs. Music is discussed as an essential site for creation, re-creation and negotiation of the various forms of identities.
ISBN9966-028-44-7
9 7 8 9 9 6 6 0 2 8 4 4 0
THE POLITICS OF EVERYDAY LIFE IN G THE POLITICS OF EVERYDAY LIFE IN
Ĩ K Ũ Y Ũ
POPULAR MUSIC OF KENYA (1990-2000)
MAINA wa MŨTONYA
THE POLITICS OF EVERYDAY LIFE IN GÐKØYØ POPULAR MUSIC OF KENYA (1990-2000)
MAINA wa MØTONYA
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.
© Copyright Maina Møtonya, 2013
Published in 2013 by: Twaweza Communications Ltd. P.O. Box 66872 - 00800 Westlands Twaweza House, Parklands Road Mpesi Lane, Nairobi Kenya website: www.twawezacommunications.org Tel: +(254) 020 269 4409
Design and Layout: Catherine Bosire Cover design:FranciscanKolbe Press Cover Photo: Maina Møtonya
ISBN:978-9966-028-44-0
Printed by: Franciscan Kolbe Press P.O. Box 468, 00217 Limuru, Kenya Email: press@ofmconvkenya.org
DEDICATION
In the memory of my late dad, Møthee Møtonya wa Njøgøna (November th th 27 1933 - January 7 2004), my mentor, friend and father whose inspiration has propelled me all along; to you, the book is dedicated. Thanks for watching over me in my every move.Øromama kwega kuraga. And to the rest of my family: Maitø Njoki, Møthee Møtonya, Njøgøna, Kamenjø, Møngai, Wangøi, Marð, Wanjirø, Kamau, Møciiri, Mwangi (Soja), Møkami and Machðra, plus the rest of the Møtonya extended family.
Dedication About the Author
Acknowledgements Preface
CHAPTER ONE CHAPTER TWO
CHAPTER THREE
CHAPTER FOUR
CHAPTER FIVE
CHAPTER SIX
CONCLUSION
POSTSCRIPT BIBLIOGRAPHY
CONTENTS
Introduction
The Politics of Everyday Life in Select Gðkøyø Popular Music (1990-2000)
Praise and Protest: Music and Contesting Patriotisms in Postcolonial Kenya
Joseph Kamarø’s Music: Cutting with Words, not Swords
‘Touch What You Don’t Have’:Møgithi, One-Man Guitar and Urban Identities
MøgithiPerformance: Popular Music, Stereotypes and Ethnic Identity
Music and Society: The Consummate Marriage
Jane Nyambura (Queen Jane) 1965- 2010
iii vii ix xi
26
51
70
95
1
118
140 148 155
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Maina wa Møtonya, from Kenya, is currently a research professor at the Center for Asian and African Studies at El Colegio de México, in México, charged with the responsibility of teaching African Literature, African Philosophy and Swahili. He obtained his PhD degree in African Literature and Cultures from the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa. His most recent publications (articles) include “La Negociación de Identidades Urbanas en el Møgithi y la Ejecución de One-Man Guitar en Kenia” (2012)The Beat Goes on: Performing Postcolonial Disillusionment in Kenya(2010) and “Fimbo ya Nyayo: When the Dictator Called the Tunes” (Forthcoming). He was a co-author inRetracing Kikuyu Music (2010), a multimedia project by Ketebul Music comprising a book, documentary DVD and audio CD. His research interests include popular culture and politics in Africa, literature and performance of power in post-independence Africa, identity formation in popular culture in Africa, specifically Kenya and Gðkøyø and Swahili languages. His current research interests include a study of the politics of remembering, violence and representation in the popular cultural terrain of Kenya. He is presently a member of the African Literature Association, the Africa Studies Association and the International Society for African Philosophy and Studies.
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