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Spirit SongAfro-Brazilian Religious Music and Boundaries$
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Marc Gidal

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199368211

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199368211.001.0001

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Drums, Rhythms, and Nations

Drums, Rhythms, and Nations

(p.75) Chapter 4 Drums, Rhythms, and Nations
Spirit Song

Marc Gidal

Oxford University Press

This chapter, building on the previous chapter, traces how musicians have brought prayers and drum rhythms from certain traditions of Batuque (called nations) into others and from Batuque into Umbanda and Quimbanda. It first explains the structure of Batuque celebrations and the different sequences for calling divinities among Batuque nations (i.e., sub-traditions, denominations). It then recounts a history of Batuque practitioners of African descent in the Cabinda Nation who began practicing Umbanda and may have brought to it the drumming practices of Batuque. The chapter then explores the flow of rhythms across Batuque nations and into Umbanda and Quimbanda, and the resistance of Batuque musicians to musical influences from Umbanda and Quimbanda. Finally, it considers the history of Afro-Brazilian religions in southern Brazil, explained in Chapter 1, to understand the community’s reasons for controlling musical syncretism among the religions.

Keywords:   Batuque, Umbanda, Quimbanda, Afro-Brazilian religion, prayers, drum, rhythm

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