Movement of the People
August 28, 2014 6:18 PM   Subscribe

Olodum ; - 'The God of Gods' or 'The Supreme God' in Yoruba
A group of Drummers dedicated to cultural activism who famously play in the Pelourinho in Salvador de Bahia.
In 1995 they came to have a wider audience as they appeared in They dont Care About Us, a Michael Jackson single which was shot both in the Pelourinho and the Dona Marta Favela of Rio de Janeiro.
posted by adamvasco (4 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
Yoruba is a fundamental part of the melange that is Santeria, and I have a special love for that pantheon. Mr. hippybear has a painting he got while in Africa with the Peace Corps back in the 1970s which depicts Yemoja (Yemeya) rising out of a river in response to a prayer/sacrifice being made to her. He had no idea what it was depicting until I explained it to him. (!)

I'm a bit puzzled by the rhythms being used by this drum corps, however, as they don't seem (in my very limited experience) to be related to the drumming rhythms used in Yoruba much at all. But then, I don't supposed they HAVE to be. Cultural influences can cross boundaries pretty freely, and combining the concept of The Base Energy Of Creation" (which is what Odolumare is) with local samba-based beats in the name of cultural awareness and struggle makes sense on the same level as combining the Orisha of Yoruba with the pantheon of Catholic saints.
posted by hippybear at 8:01 AM on August 29, 2014 [1 favorite]

Before Michael Jackson, Olodum played with Paul Simon on Obvious Child in 1990. And I kinda always wondered if Paul Simon understood what a freaking huge get that was.
posted by ambrosia at 9:06 AM on August 29, 2014 [1 favorite]

This song by Caetano Veloso, despite being named "Haiti" is about the tensions found in turning Pelourinho ("the whipping post") where slaves were once whipped, into a center of cultural tourism. It ends with the signature Olodum beat fading into the distance.
posted by umbĂș at 1:57 PM on August 29, 2014 [2 favorites]

The horror of the Pelourinho.
umbĂș I rather prefer this version..
posted by adamvasco at 4:32 PM on August 29, 2014 [1 favorite]

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