African-Influenced Songs

Topics: Drum, Singing, Drum kit Pages: 3 (1047 words) Published: March 14, 2011
In the American culture, there are non- African songs that have been influenced by the African culture. This influence can occur either in the instrumentation or the way it is composed. Those songs that are influence by the African culture have elements similar to that of African music. There are many musicians that have composed their music similar to African music. Some of these musicians are Shakira, Juan Luis Guerra, and Paul Simon to name a few. The purpose of this paper is to present songs that have been influenced by African songs both in their instrumentation and composition.

“Waka Waka (This Time For Africa)” is a song that is influenced by the African culture and its songs. “Waka Waka” is a song composed by Colombian singer, Shakira and features Freshlyground, a South African band. This song was composed for the 2010 South African World Cup. The instruments used in this song are the bass guitar, electric guitar, drum kit, bongo drums, conga drums, bass drums, keyboard, an African guitar similar to a Ukulele, and maracas. “Waka Waka” has a fast and very energetic melody to it. When it is time for the background singers to sing, they sing in harmony. The tone of this song is smooth and mellow. It is very enthusiastic and can be relaxing and enjoyable. Even though the genre of this song is pop, there is a mixture of African music. This is so because in the song, there is a deep background voice of an African singer (2:30- 2:40). The African influence in this song also occurs when the African vocalist in the song begins to sing in the African language (2:11- 2:26). Moreover, there are some African instruments used in “Waka Waka.” These instruments are the bongo drums, conga drums, and the African drum or the Ukulele. These instruments are used to accompany the African singing that occurs through the African vocalist’s verse and the African singer in the background. Relating to the video, these instruments help to bring the flow of the dance that is being...
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