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#1255: Kawolin Akawo : Wilcken asks

From: Lois E Wilcken <makandal-ny@juno.com>

I have a question concerning a traditional kongo song (i.e., the
accompanying drum rhythms and the dance are called kongo, and its text
refers to the dance).  The song title is "Kawolin Akawo."  My question: 
who was she?  Was she perhaps related to the famous nineteenth-century
piquet Jean-Jacques Aca'au?  Here's the entire text:

Kawolin Akawo, danse kongo jis kO m fE mwen mal o (bis)
Danse kongo nou laye kongo (bis)
Kawolin Akawo, nEg nwE ti zOrEy anraje

I'm speculating that if Kawolin was indeed among the piquets, the last
phrase--"the black troublemaker is crazy"--might be a description of
peasant revolutionaries.  Of course, that would reflect a biased
upperclass point of view.  A translation from a more popular perspective
might be, "The people are rising up."  With the swirling kongo skirts,
and the dancing 'til exhaustion...nice!  But I can be way off base.  If
anyone knows anything about this song, please share.  MEsi davans.

Lois Wilcken
La Troupe Makandal - New York City's #1 Haitian Roots Ensemble
621 Rutland Road, Brooklyn NY 11203
718-953-6638 / makandal-ny@juno.com