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7938: Re: 7925: Re: 7870: Meringue: Soukous derived from Konpa??? (fwd)

From: Gage Averill <gage.averill@nyu.edu>

Hi: Sorry to be out of the Meringue discussion so far (a modem problem), 
but I can state that soukous was not a product of Haitian influence (and 
vice versa).  Rather, as a number scholars have discussed, and as a 
listening tour of the 1950s and 1960s Congolese groups can attest, 
soukous came directly from Congolese versions of Cuban music that had 
been in heavy rotation during and after WWII in Central Africa. Hence the 
similarity to the Coupe Cloue/twoubadou style of Haitian konpa, which 
features dueling string instruments and voices in parallel thirds.  In 
Haiti, these features came from Cuban son of the 1920s and 1930s that 
Haitian cane workers brought back to Cuba, and which was reinforced by 
the an interest inCuban recordings among the Haitian middle classes of 
the period and the consumption of Cuban dance music in the "dancings" of 
the waterfront district west of P-a-P.  

I have aruged before that the similarities of Congolese and Haitian pop 
in the '60s and '70s was not a consequence 9as some have said) of Haitian 
UN appointees coming back from C. Africa, but from shared musical 
resources inherited from a common connection to Cuban music.