Gwakasonné

VWAYAJÉ

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“Stop here!” exclaimed Robert Oumaou as we passed a mango tree on the side of the road just outside of Point-a-Pitre, the balmy capital of Guadeloupe. He filled a plastic bag with ripe fruit, and we set off on our journey across the small Caribbean island in search of musicians he hadn’t seen in years. On the way, we shared stories in broken French and English, stopping at truck stops to eat delicious fried fish. Robert took me to his hometown, and placed a mango and a flower on the grave of his teacher and mentor, a local poet. The seeds of Vwayajé (Traveller) were sewn on this trip, but shortly after returning home, I heard that Robert was ill, and he sadly passed away in 2018. This compilation was originally intended as a way to share Robert’s brazen work with a wider global audience, but it now also serves to immortalize his indomitable spirit. Gwakasonné is the ecstatic articulation of Robert Oumaou’s artistic and political vision, a unified expression of his interests in American jazz, pre-colonial rhythms, Guadeloupian independence, and Créole poetics. Over the course of three albums, all released in the 80s, Robert piloted a revolving cast of musicians, a venerable who’s-who of Point-a-Pitre avant-jazz pioneers, to deftly intone his creative communal concepts. The songs on Vwayajé are compiled from these three releases, Gwakasonné, Temwen, and Moun, along with an electronic mantra taken from his 2007 solo album Sang Comment Taire. Viewed from our current artistic and cultural landscape, Robert’s work is exceptionally enduring, grounded in its declarations of freedom and foundational use of the Ka (drum) and voice, and prescient in its borderless explorations of protest folk, electronics, ambient atmosphere, music from the African diaspora, and spiritual jazz. The long-form hive-mind expression of the group has parallels with similar explorations by The Grateful Dead, electric Miles, Pharaoh Sanders, and even the Boredoms, but these are only oblique references for a truly peerless sound. Like other conceptual children of Gérard Lockel, the group was part of a progressive movement of like-minded musicians, such as Serge Fabriano, Dao, Erick Cosaque, and Gaoulé Mizik, who embraced Lockel’s modernist ideals, fusing Gwo Ka drumming and tuning systems with contemporary jazz and vanguard recording technologies. Robert’s ecstatic phrasings, embrace of electronic instruments, and daring lyrics set the group apart as the beatific expression of a sagacious soul.

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Details

Release Date

18.07.2019

Cat No

16SC

Tracklist

Track 1
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Track 2
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Track 3
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Track 4
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Track 5
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Track 6
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Track 7
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Track 8
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Track 9
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Track 10
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Track 11
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Track 12
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Afro Beat
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LP
Smokey Haangala
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Aunka Ma KwachaSeance Centre
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Afro Music
LP
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Smokey Haangala
24.95 €
Aunka Ma KwachaSeance Centre
Experimental Electronica
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LP
Shabason & Gunning
24.95 €
MuldrewSeance Centre
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Electronica
LP
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Shabason & Gunning
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MuldrewSeance Centre
Electronica
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12''
Short-Term Memory
20.95 €
Plus Or Minus TwoSeance Centre
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Electronica
12''
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Short-Term Memory
20.95 €
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Electronica
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LP
Philip Sanderson
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On One Of These BendsSeance Centre
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Electronica
LP
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Philip Sanderson
25.95 €
On One Of These BendsSeance Centre
Balearic
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LP
MJ Lallo
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Star ChildSeance Centre
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Disco
LP
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MJ Lallo
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Star ChildSeance Centre
Balearic
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2-LP
Mj Lallo
30.95 €
Take Me With YouSeance Centre
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Disco
2-LP
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Mj Lallo
30.95 €
Take Me With YouSeance Centre
Library
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12"
Acoustic High-end Research
12.95 €
Running Back Presents Strada ProfessionaRunning Back
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12"
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Acoustic High-end Research
12.95 €
Running Back Presents Strada ProfessionaRunning Back
Proto House
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12"
Cultural Vibe
9.95 €
Ma Foom BeyEasy Street
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House
12"
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9.95 €
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Boogie
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7''
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11.95 €
Relax / MalandrinhaAthens Of The North
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7''
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11.95 €
Relax / MalandrinhaAthens Of The North
Re Edit (Disco)
12"
Loni Gamble Band feat. Lisa Warrington
16.95 €
I Like The Way (incl. Tom Noble Edit)Peoples Potential Unlimited
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12"
Loni Gamble Band feat. Lisa Warrington
16.95 €
I Like The Way (incl. Tom Noble Edit)Peoples Potential Unlimited
World
3-LP + mp3
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35.95 €
Back From The BankNow Again
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World
3-LP + mp3
Kourosh Yaghmaei -Ripröss-
35.95 €
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US Techno
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12"
Levon Vincent
11.95 €
Man Or Mistress (repress) Red VinylNovel Sound
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Techno
12"
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Levon Vincent
11.95 €
Man Or Mistress (repress) Red VinylNovel Sound