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Tuesday, June 02, 2015


This patterned musical foundation - or meeting at the head - resounds a sense of collectivity, of a cultural heritage passed on from one generation to another, a patrimony nominally represented by one's surname, or jamu. To perform on top of this foundation, to mobilize the body beneath the head of a musical arrangement is to claim an identity beyond ... The artist who improvises a running solo, incites the dance with a syncopated rhythm, and makes his instrument sing with a novel melody asserts his dynamic and creative agency as a performer. He claims his individuality, a distinctive subjectivity symbolized by his first name, or togo and the status and identity of being a togotigi: the achieved state of making a name for oneself, of being an owner (tigi) of one's name (togo) (Skinner 2015, 88).

Skinner, Ryan Thomas. 2015. Bamako Sounds: The Afropolitan Ethics of Malian Music. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press.

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