Awesome Sauce Music Friday: Complex Singing on the Golden Records
One of the more interesting things I think, music wise, that made an appearance on the golden records is a song by the girls of a pygmy tribe in what is now the Democratic Republic of Congo. These tribes are known for extremely dense and complex vocal music, to a point that Simha Arom says that Europe did not reach similar complexity until the 14th century. I’m not sure exactly how complexity in vocal music is measured, but I have no reason to doubt this.
I like pygmy music being on the Interstellar Record both because it adds to the diversity of the collection and because it is music of a traditionally oppressed people. The neighboring non-pygmy Bantu peoples in sub-Saharan Africa have a tendency to see pygmies as subhuman and treat them as slaves, so we should champion the voices of these people.
Featured image credit: Paul Godard via Flickr