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The intensity factor in the traditional idiom of music making in Dagbon : expressive components in the dance mode of drumming

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Abstract
In this study we present the results of an analysis of the traditional idiom of music making in Dagbon. In the first part of the paper we define the key expressive elements of music making in Dagbon such as the “intensity factor” and the “African hemiola style”. Examples of these elements are: The call and response style of singing, the improvisational character of the music-dance, the existence of homeostasis states and rhythmical transition zones, the phenomenon of a ‘movable one’ that interlocks with the common ‘elementary pulsation’ that forms part of the architecture of the music-dance, the superposition of simple rhythmical patterns that interlock with each other, simultaneous double elementary pulse-lines, distinctive costumes, make-up, and objects related to the occasion of the ritual performance e.g. amulets and regalia, the sacrifice of animals, giving of coins to the dancers and musicians, trance and narrowed consciousness. We made computer analyses of audiovisual field recordings in combination with video analyses and wrote transcriptions and annotations in western score notation. Our results show that the music-dance in Dagbon has a highly polyrhythmic character, and consists of different characteristic parameters. Among these key elements are: Embodied Music Interaction of the different musicians, the dancers and the audience; the superposition of simple rhythmic patterns that form rhythmical layers showing a cyclic character and are based on a common microtiming, the interlocking of intermediate rhythmical layers – superposition of simple rhythmical patterns - through the stimulation of an ‘elementary pulsation’ also called ‘the smallest units’, and referred to in this paper as ‘microtiming’, the existence of simultaneously double elementary pulse-lines, e.g. ziem, tindana waa, and a duple and triple meter in the architecture of the music-dance: e.g. simultaneously simple triple meter and compound duple meter, e.g. ziem, tindana waa, jera waa and simultaneously simple duple meter and compound duple meter, 2-beat and 3-beat grouping, referred to as the “African hemiola”. Analysis of polyrhythmic structures in music-dance in Dagbon shows that there is a superposition of rhythmical cycles - 2-beat and 3-beat grouping. The stable rhythmical periods or states are called “homeostasis” states in this paper. Between two stable states is a transitional zone that we call the liminal zone, which has an unstable rhythmic character that transforms into a stable state. These short liminal zones provide extra energy and contribute to the intensity of the performance and the dynamics of the ritual dance. Liminal transitional periods between two rhythmically stable periods occur in the audio-visual field recordings. We named the stable periods homeostasis and transitional periods the “intensity factor”. These transitional periods of temporarily unstable rhythmic transformational processes are periods that lie between two homeostasis periods, which are short but contain much intensity/energy and thus the rhythm pushes the music and the bodily movements of the dance during the ritual.
Keywords
Intensity factor, movable one, superposition of rhythmical layers, embodied music interaction, tindana ritual music and dance

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Chicago
Phyfferoen, Dominik. 2019. “The Intensity Factor in the Traditional Idiom of Music Making in Dagbon :  Expressive Components in the Dance Mode of Drumming.” In SASMR18 : Symposium on Scientific Approaches in Sound and Movement Research, ed. Kendra Stepputat and Christopher S Dick, 1:69–83. Dürer: Shaker Verlag .
APA
Phyfferoen, D. (2019). The intensity factor in the traditional idiom of music making in Dagbon :  expressive components in the dance mode of drumming. In K. Stepputat & C. S. Dick (Eds.), SASMR18 : Symposium on Scientific Approaches in Sound and Movement Research (Vol. 1, pp. 69–83). Presented at the Symposium on Scientific Approaches in Sound and Movement Research, Dürer: Shaker Verlag .
Vancouver
1.
Phyfferoen D. The intensity factor in the traditional idiom of music making in Dagbon :  expressive components in the dance mode of drumming. In: Stepputat K, Dick CS, editors. SASMR18 : Symposium on Scientific Approaches in Sound and Movement Research. Dürer: Shaker Verlag ; 2019. p. 69–83.
MLA
Phyfferoen, Dominik. “The Intensity Factor in the Traditional Idiom of Music Making in Dagbon :  Expressive Components in the Dance Mode of Drumming.” SASMR18 : Symposium on Scientific Approaches in Sound and Movement Research. Ed. Kendra Stepputat & Christopher S Dick. Vol. 1. Dürer: Shaker Verlag , 2019. 69–83. Print.
@inproceedings{8623097,
  abstract     = {In this study we present the results of an analysis of the traditional idiom of music making in Dagbon. 
In the first part of the paper we define the key expressive elements of music making in Dagbon such as the “intensity factor” and the “African hemiola style”. Examples of these elements are: The call and response style of singing, the improvisational character of the music-dance, the existence of homeostasis states and rhythmical transition zones, the phenomenon of a ‘movable one’ that interlocks with the common ‘elementary pulsation’ that forms part of the architecture of the music-dance, the superposition of simple rhythmical patterns that interlock with each other, simultaneous double elementary pulse-lines, distinctive costumes, make-up, and objects related to the occasion of the ritual performance e.g. amulets and regalia, the sacrifice of animals, giving of coins to the dancers and musicians, trance and narrowed consciousness. 
We made computer analyses of audiovisual field recordings in combination with video analyses and wrote transcriptions and annotations in western score notation. Our results show that the music-dance in Dagbon has a highly polyrhythmic character, and consists of different characteristic parameters. Among these key elements are: Embodied Music Interaction of the different musicians, the dancers and the audience; the superposition of simple rhythmic patterns that form rhythmical layers showing a cyclic character and are based on a common microtiming, the interlocking of intermediate rhythmical layers – superposition of simple rhythmical patterns - through the stimulation of an ‘elementary pulsation’ also called ‘the smallest units’, and referred to in this paper as ‘microtiming’, the existence of simultaneously double elementary pulse-lines, e.g. ziem, tindana waa, and a duple and triple meter in the architecture of the music-dance: e.g. simultaneously simple triple meter and compound duple meter, e.g. ziem, tindana waa, jera waa and simultaneously simple duple meter and compound duple meter, 2-beat and 3-beat grouping, referred to as the “African hemiola”. Analysis of polyrhythmic structures in music-dance in Dagbon shows that there is a superposition of rhythmical cycles - 2-beat and 3-beat grouping. The stable rhythmical periods or states are called “homeostasis” states in this paper. Between two stable states is a transitional zone that we call the liminal zone, which has an unstable rhythmic character that transforms into a stable state. These short liminal zones provide extra energy and contribute to the intensity of the performance and the dynamics of the ritual dance. Liminal transitional periods between two rhythmically stable periods occur in the audio-visual field recordings. We named the stable periods homeostasis and transitional periods the “intensity factor”. These transitional periods of temporarily unstable rhythmic transformational processes are periods that lie between two homeostasis periods, which are short but contain much intensity/energy and thus the rhythm pushes the music and the bodily movements of the dance during the ritual. },
  articleno    = {10},
  author       = {Phyfferoen, Dominik},
  booktitle    = {SASMR18 : Symposium on Scientific Approaches in Sound and Movement Research},
  editor       = {Stepputat, Kendra  and Dick, Christopher S },
  isbn         = {9783844067446},
  keywords     = {Intensity factor,movable one,superposition of rhythmical layers,embodied music interaction,tindana ritual music and dance},
  language     = {eng},
  location     = {Graz, Austria},
  number       = {1},
  pages        = {10:69--10:83},
  publisher    = {Shaker Verlag },
  title        = {The intensity factor in the traditional idiom of music making in Dagbon :  expressive components in the dance mode of drumming},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.2370/9783844067446},
  volume       = {1},
  year         = {2019},
}

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