Cossroad Means Kafou in Music
Elsewhere we explain that we are at a crossroads where the natural and the synthetic meet. In Haitian mythology, kafou is an inter-dimensional doorway through which spiritual entities come and go; kafou means crossroads. Consistent with our fundraising theme, the musical cooperative Jazz Pyebwa recorded and donated to us the recording of the song Kafou.
The song Kafou was recorded by the band Jazz des Jeunes (big band instrumentation) in the 60s at a time when Haitian music was at a crossroads. Jazz des Jeunes ranted that Haitian music was being undermined by sloppy musicianship in this song ,"Kafou," with another song may be titled "voizin." The band tried its best to address that the rich musical tradition in Haiti was at risk. The story of the song Kafou is recounted in Gage Averill's volume "A day for the Hunter, a Day for the Prey."
Jazz Pyebwa also recorded and donated to us a song called "Dezire" that was recorded in the early 70s by the group Bossa Combo one of the mini jazzes of of the mini jazz era in Haiti. This song was among very few tunes that used traditional rhythm after Jazz des Jeunes' rant. We guess that Bossa Combo showed their musicianship while proving Jazz des Jeunes' point. Only a handful of Haitian tunes may be said to have been recorded by Haitian pop bands that use traditional rhythm. The band Trio Select evolved gracefully with front man Coupe Cloue in the early 70s; they played a rhythm that can be heard in recordings of the 1930s.
The Jazz Pyebwa recordings of said songs are not available commercially and we offer them as downloads only.
Jazz Pyebwa is a cooperative of musicians conducting research in the rich Haitian musical tradition. Jazz Pyebwa's mainly focus is on the historical factors that stagnated the evolution of Haitian traditional music as main stream Haitian music. Jazz Pyebwa's research goes back to the early 1800s via the Haitians who settled in New Orleans whom descendants are known today as Creoles. Jazz Pyebwa applies the same techniques that were applied over the years by Creole musicians and their descendants from which came funk, zydeko, rock n' roll, and Jazz. Creole music has been on world stage since 1841 beginning with a fusion of Haitian music and classical; the composition is entitled "Bananiers" and it was based on "Grenadyé a Laso" which is the song of the Haitian revolutionary army that defeated France to free Haiti.
Jazz Pyebwa's first release entitled "Legba Suite" is also made available to help us raise funds. This release is a fusion of Haitian traditional songs accentuated with funk elements.