The Classical Music of Cameroon’s Bamoun Kingdom (In Bassa)    
email to friend  E-mail this to a Friend   If you want to add this video in your blog or on your personal home page, Please click the fallowing link to copy source code  Copy source code     Download:    WMV (40MB)    MP4(55MB)   MP3(13MB)
Today’s Enlightening Entertainment will be presented in Bassa and French, with subtitles in Arabic, Aulacese (Vietnamese), Chinese, English, French, German, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Malay, Mongolian, Persian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and Thai.

Welcome, open-hearted viewers. Cameroon, admired as “Africa in miniature,” offers not only vibrant natural and cultural diversity but also some of the coolest native styles of African music. Let’s find out more by going to the city of Foumban. This is the historical capital of the Bamoun Kingdom of Cameroon and an important center for indigenous African arts and music.

Yes, this is what is called kwekwet.

Kwekwet in Bamoun means shoumoungwé. Shoumoungwé is a woman’s mouth because women chatter a lot. It’s Bamoun men who named it so. And this is what we call the sanza. It has the dangié note. Dangie is a song uniquely for princes. It’s played only for the princes and it is danced only for the princes. For example, I will play a bit.

And here is the sanza again, but this one has the mbara note. Popular music.

The city of Foumban houses the seat of the Royal Palace of the Bamoun people. Here, we meet talented musicians of the Foumban Royal Artistic Ensemble, an internationally known musical band created by His Royal Highness Prince Njasse Njoya Aboubakar in 1982. They shared with us their deep love and dedication in preserving classical Bamoun music.

I’m Prince Fouapon Yaya, the keeper of Bamoun traditional music in all its forms. I chose it because this artistic element was on the path of disappearing. It hurt me to see its imminent disappearance. I chose to work on it to mobilize the young people that you see here to learn the traditional music.

I am Mr. Njoya Ousmanou. I’m a member of the Foumban Royal Artistic Ensemble. We play Bamoun traditional music. Bamoun people are born with music. And music accompanies Bamoun people during weddings. As soon as a Bamoun person passes away, music accompanies him.

Good day. I’m the president of Bamoun Traditional Dance, at the Bamoun Kingdom. My name is Moucharana Zacharie, Zachariaou. We are born and we are introduced into Bamoun cultural dance. There is no country without traditional dances. I like traditional dance. When we dance it, it gives us joy.

My name is Onkié Issa. I’m a musician of the Foumban Royal Artistic Ensemble. And I began playing music at a very young age. When our ancestors played, we accompanied them until we knew how to play music.

We’re there to preserve traditional music, which is endangered. (Yes). And also, we teach everyone, anyone, strangers.

The origin of classical Bamoun music can be traced to seven centuries ago when the royal court of Bamoun Kingdom established a music society of its own. Style-wise, Bamoun music is a combination of indigenous Bamoun songs and elements of Christian and Muslim music.

Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah Jesus Christ
Hallelujah, Hallelujah Our Father
Hallelujah Our Lord is good
Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah God is good

Classical Bamoun music culture features many Amazing instruments. In their earliest origins, some musical instruments were believed to have spiritual connections. Later, these were performed in all occasions of life, ranging from weddings, ceremonies, and parties, to funerals and other gatherings. His Highness Prince Fouapon hand-crafts classical Cameroonian instruments. He introduced some of them to us.

There are instruments with which we prayed to God Almighty, like the lounkeu, we prayed to God with it. It is said that when you play that instrument, you are connected with the Supreme Being.

It’s a therapeutic musical instrument, the sound of which could heal certain illnesses of the Bamoun people, especially stress.

It’s made out of raffia bamboo. And this is the mvet.

Mvet is in French, it originates from South Cameroon. Bamouns call this dounyènyè, mosquito guitar. The sound…

This is the calabash, a sound box, metallic wire and wood.

Double bells, originally from Batié, an ancient Bamoun musical instrument. It is made of metallic wire.

This is what we call the rhombe in French, but we Bamouns call it Ngouen.

And this is the nchar of Banso. It came from Banso. It’s not Bamoun. It accompanies popular songs.

What is this?

Bougre is a fruit, a black fruit, here is the pit.

That is the souré, a musical instrument used to call the population. It’s metal, wood and cloth. Right, now you have the dougkouokouo.

What is this?


What is it made of?

Bamboo stem.

Here, you have the big mvet; it’s the biggest.

Besides performing for the public, Prince Fouapon and other musicians also work to preserve the music, and with pride. They do so by writing down the scores of those songs which have only been passed along orally.

I don’t compose. I’m a keeper.

I don’t complicate anything. I have never added anything in traditional music. That is what preserves Bamoun history in general. Bamoun history has been preserved through music.

First, it’s to preserve, as I have just said, and second, it’s also to publish.

Bamoun music tells much about the precious Cameroonian and African heritage. People travel from afar to become more familiar with the Bamoun classical music and culture.

My name is Eva, I am a German volunteer, and I stay here in Foumban in Cameroon for one year, to do cultural exchange. I decided to come here to bring a part of my culture to Cameroon and to get a lot of culture from the Cameroonians. You see here… for example, Ibrahim and I, we do music together. He teaches me Bamoun music and I teach him German.

Is it easy for you to learn?

No, it’s not easy because the rhythm, it’s so different to what we know in our music style. So I have to learn the rhythm and that’s hard for me.

But at least you are making some progress?

Yeah, I do. For example, in Germany, there are so many people who don’t know about Cameroon or other African countries. And when I come back, I can just tell them something so that they know a lot more.

As our program concludes, let us enjoy a classical song from the repertoire of Bamoun music titled “Allelujah,” performed by the Foumban Royal Artistic Ensemble.

Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah Jesus Christ
Hallelujah, Hallelujah Our Father
Hallelujah Our Lord is good
Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah God is good
Hallelujah Our Father
Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah God is great
Hallelujah Almighty, Hallelujah God of the universe
Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah Jesus Christ
Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah God is great
Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah Jesus Christ
Hallelujah Our Father
Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah God of the universe
Hallelujah Our Father Hallelujah

We thank Their Highnesses the royal artist members of the Foumban Royal Artistic Ensemble, and the Bamoun Traditional Dance Troupe for your delightful presentations. May the vibrant classical art forms of the Bamoun Kingdom continue to thrive and be appreciated worldwide. Wishing the best to the proud Bamoun people and all the joyful Cameroonians!

Beautiful viewers, we have enjoyed your pleasant company today on Enlightening Entertainment. Now, please stay tuned to Supreme Master Television for Words of Wisdom, after Noteworthy News. May your heart be filled with Heavenly melodies.
trackback :


   Download by Subtitle
  Scrolls Download
  MP3 Download
Listen Mp3Listen  Words of Wisdom
Listen Mp3Listen  Between Master and Disciples
  MP4 download for iPhone(iPod )
  Download Non Subtitle Videos
  Download by Program
A Journey through Aesthetic Realms
Animal World
Between Master and Disciples
Enlightening Entertainment
Good People Good Works
Noteworthy News
Vegetarian Elite
Vegetarianism: The Noble Way of Living
Words of Wisdom
  Download by Date
January . 2021