|This article currently links to a large number of disambiguation pages (or back to itself) (check | fix). (December 2013)|
|Cadence-lypso or Cadence, Kadans|
|Stylistic origins||Haitian cadence and compas, as well as Native, Caribbean, American, and African music styles.|
|Cultural origins||Early 1970s, Dominica and Guadeloupe|
|Typical instruments||Drum set, Horn section, two synthesizers, rhythmic guitar, bass guitar|
|Zouk - Bouyon - Soca|
|Calypso - Music of Dominica - Exile One|
|Part of a series on the|
Cadence-lypso is a musical genre from Dominica. The genre developed in the 1970s finding its origin in the Haitian kompa combined with calypso, and sometimes referred to as the Dominican version of kadans.
Cadence-lypso became the most popular musical form in the kwéyòlpal Caribbean during the 1970s. During that time, the music developed and evolved, reaching a zenith in the period from 1978 to 1980, and then took a downturn, by which time it had become a factor in the development of zouk music.
Dominican contemporary music, that is the music played by the dance bands from the 1950s, has played a very important role in Dominica national life. Dominica musical landscape has seen many changes in the intervening period from 1950. In the forties and fifties, there were bands such as the Casimir Brothers of Roseau. The Swinging Stars emerged at the end of the fifties. All these bands played music of the Caribbean and elsewhere such as calypso, bolero, samba, merengue and funk. They all had the big band sound with lots of horns. Traditional rhythms of Dominica such as lapo kabwit or jing ping were not played by the big bands.
In the 1960s, calypso and steelband music became very popular and indeed replaced lapo kabwit and chanté mas as the music of carnival, particularly in the capital Roseau. Many of the traditional carnival songs were performed in the new calypso beat. Calypsonians and calypso monarch competitions emerged and became extremely popular. Steelbands emerged all around the country. The older musicians and bands had moved on and were replaced by the younger musicians. Bands such as Swinging Stars, The Gaylords, De Boys an Dem, Los Caballeros and Swinging Busters surfaced and began to cut records. The emergence of radio, first WIDBS and later Radio Dominica helped to spread the music.
It was in the 1960s that the trend towards drawing on original music, traditional music and songs of Dominica began. This was probably best exemplified by the music of the Gaylords and to a lesser extent, De Boys and Dem. Gaylords unleashed a string of hits such as "DouvanJou", "Ti Mako", songs in Kwéyòl as well as powerful nationalist songs in English, as "Lovely Dominica" and "Pray for the Blackman". These songs were performed to calypso rhythms and later the new reggae beat coming out of Jamaica.
In the late 1960s and early 1970s, the influence of rock, soul and funk music from the United States was reflected in our contemporary dance music. New groups originating from mainly the high school student population emerged. Groups such as Every Mother's Child, Woodenstool and Voltage Four specialized in rock and funk. The Latin-rock music of Carlos Santana and Afro-rock music of Osibisa became powerful influences on our younger bands, and were very popular in the dance halls.
The Cadence Era
In the early 1960s, Haitian musicians introduced to the Caribbean, specifically, Dominica and the French Antilles (Guadeloupe and Martinique) the kadans or compas, a sophisticated form of music that quickly swept the islands and helped unite all the former French colonies of the Caribbean by combining their cultural influences. In the early 1970s, the Dominican kadans band Exile One was born. Its members were top rate Dominican musicians originating from bands such as Woodenstool, Voltage and De Boys and Dem. Exile One popularized a style of cadence music called cadence-lypso by combining the Haitian compas/cadence rampa and the Trinidadian calypso, however, most of the bands repertoire was kadans. The band also featured Jamaican reggae and others.
There was a virtual explosion of kadans bands - Exile One, Grammacks, Liquid Ice, Midnight Groovers, Black Affairs, Black Machine, Mantra, Belles Combo, Milestone, Wafrikai, Black roots, Black Blood, Naked Feet and Mammouth among others. Leading vocalists of the period include Gordon Henderson, Jeff Joseph, Marcel "Chubby" Marc, Anthony Gussie, Mike Moreau, Tony Valmond, Linford John, Bill Thomas, SinkyRabess and Janet Azouz among others. Cadence-lypso music became popular in Martinique, Guadeloupe, Haiti and other islands in the Caribbean, Latin America and Africa, blazing a pathway for the development of related styles such as zouk and soca music.
The music of Santana and Osibisa also influenced this new form as evidenced in the use of guitars, keyboards, horns and percussion. At that time too, the society was in nationalist ferment. The Black Power and Rastafarian Movements, with their black pride, pro-African and anti-colonial ideological positions, influenced the young musicians tremendously. This was reflected in the music in terms of band names such as Wafrikai, Black Machine, Black Roots, Black Affairs and Black Blood, a definitive identification with blackness, with Africa. This was reflected in the melody, in the use of certain instruments such as keyboards, guitars and horns. This was also reflected in lyrical content, the positive, nationalist and social commentary of cadence-lypso. Songs like "TwaveyPouAnyen" which addressed the rigours of slavery, impacted on our collective consciousness more than the politicians or Black Power advocates ever could. Cadence-lypso reflected and exuded the nationalist ferment of the seventies.
There were a number of other important aspects of cadence-lypso music which impacted on our culture and society as well as the future direction of Dominica's contemporary music. Cadence-lypso used the Kwéyòl language as its prime means of expression, again feeding into our language traditions and our folk song traditions. Oral traditions such as proverbs were every much utilized in the music. Cadence-music united the generations. It was popular among the young and the old. This music was popular among the older folk because of its similarity or relationship to rhythms of jing ping music and the use of the Kwéyòl language. For the younger people, this music which was making Dominica famous overseas was also serving as a platform of protest against the ills of society and for conscious-raising.
The period of the eighties saw the demise of most Dominican bands of the Cadence-lypso era. During that period, Ophelia emerged and became Dominica's first kadans female singer to achieve international star status. The same too can be said of her with respect to the French Antilles. Gordon Henderson, Jeff Joseph and Julie Mourillon were all pursuing solo careers and releasing albums.
By the mid-eighties, there emerged two powerful influences on our contemporary dance music. Firstly, the new digital compas music sound and the fast zouk beton music pioneered by Kassav of Guadeloupe and Martinique became popular in Dominica. Kassav' was formed in 1979 by Pierre-Edouard Décimus (former musicians from the Les Vikings de Guadeloupe) and Paris studio musician Jacob F. Desvarieux. Together and under the influence of well-known Dominican and Guadeloupean kadans or compas bands like Experience 7, Grammacks and Exile One, they decided to make Guadeloupean carnival music and record it in a more fully orchestrated yet modern and polished style.
Kassav' created its own style by introducing an eleven-piece gwo ka unit and two lead singers, tambour, ti bwa, biguine, cadence-lypso: calypso and mostly cadence or compas with full use of the MIDI technology. In the 1980s they took Caribbean music to another level by recording in the new digital format. Their first album, Love and Ka Dance (1980), established the sound of zouk. Zouk's use of the Kwéyòl language, its rhythmic connections to cadence-lypso and its excellent technical and sound quality, were the main reasons for its success.
The second major influence was soca music. New bands such as WCK, First Serenade and RSB emerged playing zouk and soca. With regards to instruments, the horns were replaced by keyboard synthesizers and the drums by drum machines. The new musicians were largely untrained and lacking in the nationalist consciousness of the seventies. It was only in calypso and in the newly developing performance poetry that the social commentary was still to be found in the music of the eighties.
In the eighties, there was also the beginnings of exploring the lapo kabwit and jing ping rhythms by the newly regrouped Exile One, a trend which deepened in the nineties.
The Godfather of Soca was Trinidadian Lord Shorty. A prolific musician, composer and innovator, Shorty experimented with fusing calypso and elements of Indo-Caribbean music for nearly a decade before unleashing "the soul of calypso,"...soca music.
Shorty was the first to really define his music and with "Indrani" in 1973 and "Endless Vibration" (not just the song but the entire album) in 1975, calypso music really took off in another direction. Later in 1975 Shorty visited his good friend Maestro in Dominica where he stayed (at Maestro's house) for a month while they visited and worked with local cadence artists. You had Maestro experimenting with Calypso and Cadence ("Cadence-lypso"). Sadly a year later Maestro would die in an accident in Dominica and his loss was palpably felt by Shorty, who penned "Higher World" as a tribute.
Shorty had been in Dominica during an Exile One performance of cadence-lypso, and collaborated with Dominica's 1969 Calypso King, Lord Tokyo and two calypso lyricists, Chris Seraphine and Pat Aaron in the early 1970s, who wrote him some creole lyrics. Soon after Shorty released a song, "Ou Petit", with words like "Ou dee moin ou petit Shorty" (meaning "you told me you are small Shorty"), a combination of calypso, cadence and kwéyòl. Shorty's 1974 Endless Vibrations and Soul of Calypso brought soca to its peak of international fame.
Soca's development includes its fusion of calypso, cadence, and Indian musical instruments—particularly the dholak, tabla and dhantal—as demonstrated in Shorty's classic compositions "Ïndrani" and "Shanti Om".
The Bouyon Generation
The nineties in Dominica have been dominated by a new musical form called bouyon music. Bouyon emerged from the attempt of the new generation bands like WCK to develop their own style. Bouyon in effect represents a fusion of zouk and soca music but also draws upon cadence-lypso, jing ping and lapo kabrit elements in terms of rhythm. Bouyon music is very dependent on the drum machine, cowbell and keyboards with guitars receding into the background. As such, it has a very strident rhythm and is aptly referred to as jump up music by the population in Guadeloupe and Martinique. Bouyon is truly that, music for jump up.
From a language perspective, Bouyon draws on English and Kwéyòl. The lyrics are very trivial. Bouyon involves chanting rather than singing and is very much influenced by dancehall-reggae-rap language style, coming out of Jamaica. Bouyon-muffin is an off shoot of this tendency. While bouyon lyrics comment on everyday life in the cultural sense, they are not explicitly social commentary in the political sense. The present crop of musicians do not have the rich cultural, political and nationalist experience of the seventies to draw on in their creativity. Bouyon perpetuates the wine and jam music trend sweeping the Caribbean at the moment.
With the emergence of bouyon music and tax concessions on musical instruments, new bands have emerged, including Seramix, Wassin Warriors, Rough and Ready and other lesser known bands in rural villages. All however use the same production formulas and thus sound alike. The emergence of computer-based recording studios in Dominica has meant a great increase in the production of local recordings. Unlike cadence-lypso, bouyon does not unite the generations. It is really the music of young people.
Recently, efforts have begun to revitalize cadence and creole music generally through the holding of the World Creole Music Festival here in Dominica. This festival attracts top bands of the French Creole-speaking world and in Africa. Exile One, Jeff Joseph//new Generation Grammacks, Anthony Gussie and Tony Valmond/Liquid Ice have released a number of albums as well as remastered vintage cadence hits of the 1970s.
Cadence-lypso is the Dominica kadans introduced in the early 1960s by the Sicot brothers. The most influential figure in the promotion of Cadence-lypso was the Dominican group Exile One(based on the island of Guadeloupe) that combined calypso music from the English speaking Caribbean and the cadence rampa of Haiti. It was pushed in the 1970s by groups from Dominica, and was the first style of Dominican music to find international acclaim.
Dominica cadence music has evolved under the influence of Dominican and Caribbean/Latin rhythms, as well as rock and roll, soul, and funk music from the United States. By the end of the 1970s, Gordon Henderson defined Cadence-lypso as "a synthesis of Caribbean and African musical patterns fusing the traditional with the contemporary".
Aside from Exile One, other bands included the Grammacks, Black Roots, Black Machine, Naked Feet, Belles Combo, Mantra, Black Affairs, Liquid Ice, Wafrikai, Midnighte Groovers and Milestone, while the most famous singers included Bill Thomas, Chubby Marc, Gordon Henderson, Linford John, Janet Azouz, Sinky Rabess, Tony Valmond, Jeff Joseph, Mike Moreau and Anthony Gussie. Ophelia Marie is a popular singer of cadence-lypso in the 1980s.
Cadence-lypso was influenced by nationalist movement that espoused Rastafari and Black Power. Many groups performed songs with intensely ideological positions, and much of the repertoire was in the vernacular kwéyòl language.
Exile One, based in Guadeloupe, is a legendary Dominican group of the 1970s that was very influential in the development of Caribbean music.
In 1969, Gordon Henderson (the creole father of soul) decided that the French Overseas Department of Guadeloupe had everything he needed to begin a career in Creole music. He met the singer Hippomene Leauva from the then famous “Les Vikings” who introduced him to the band which included Pierre-Edouard Décimus who later founded the group Kassav. Gordon recorded a few songs with Les Vikings which became instant hits in countries beyond the usual market such as Surinam and Holland. At some point he felt that he should start his own group and asked a former school friend Fitzroy Williams to recruit a few Dominicans to complete those he had already selected. The group was named Exile One.
The Dominican band Exile One led by the talented Gordon Henderson introduced a full-horn section and synthesizers to their music that other young cadence or compas bands from Haiti (mini-jazz) and the French Antilles emulated in the 1970s and 1980s. Exile One was copied by bands from all over and most of all from the island of Dominica. In forty years, Gordon Henderson has worked with scores of different musicians.
Exile One was the most promoted creole band of the Caribbean. The first to sign a production contract with a major label call Barclay Records. The first to export kadans music to the four corners of the globe: Japan, the Indian Ocean, Africa, North America, Europe, The Cape Verde islands.
Impact on Creole music
- Zouk béton: Guadeloupeans Jacob Desvarieux and the brothers Decimus are widely credited for having created the fast carnival zouk beton phenomenon in the high-tech recording studios of Paris in the 1980s. Yet they themselves acknowledge that zouk was merely a natural progression from the "kadans-lypso" of such bands as Exile One (led by singer Gordon Henderson), Grammacks, and the Midnight Groovers –all from the tiny island of Dominica.
- Zouk Love is the French Antilles cadence or compas music, characterized by a slow, soft and sexual rhythm. The lyrics of the songs often speak of love and sentimental problems. The music cabo-love from Cape Verde and Kizomba from Angola are derivatives of the French Antilles compas music. A main exponent was Ophelia Marie of Dominica. Other artists come from the French West Indies, the Netherlands, and Africa.
The Godfather of Soca is Lord Shorty. Shorty had been in Dominica during an Exile One performance of cadence-lypso, and collaborated with Dominica's 1969 Calypso King, Lord Tokyo and two calypso lyricists, Chris Seraphine and Pat Aaron in the early 1970s, who wrote him some creole lyrics. Soon after Shorty released a song, "Ou Petit", with words like "Ou dee moin ou petit Shorty" (meaning "you told me you are small Shorty"), a combination of calypso, cadence and kwéyòl.
Soca's development includes its fusion of calypso, cadence, and Indian musical instruments—particularly the dholak, tabla and dhantal—as demonstrated in Shorty's classic compositions "Ïndrani" and "Shanti Om".
Bouyon is a popular music of Dominica created by WCK or Windward Caribbean Kulture, a group of highly creative young Dominican musicians. They began experimenting with a fusion of cadence-lypso and Jing ping. While the Cadence-Lypso sound is based on the creative use of acoustic drums, an aggressive up-tempo guitar beat and strong social commentary in the native Creole language, the new sound created by WCK, focused more on the use of technology with a strong emphasis on keyboard rhythmic patterns.
This group came together to fill a void left by several of Dominica's most internationally recognized bands such as Exile One and Grammacks. The band heralded in a new and much needed resurgence of live music and created a new wave in Dominicas musical evolution.
Musical features of cadence
Cadence music is characterized by a constant up tempo rhythm, hence the name cadence. Its percaussive aspect come from the drum (in particular, the steady one-beat bass drum), an accentuated use of cymbals and, to a lesser extent, the high hat plus a distinct beat of the cowbell, tok, to-tok, tok-tok-tok, and conga drum beating a dash of méringue.
Dominica cadence, as a kadans style is no different. Tunes that slowed down and laid back, as in Ophelia's hit song Aye Dominique, Grammacks mi debay, and Midnight Groovers milk and honey, were popular songs of the 1970s. The bassline plays on every beat in cut time. The guitars and synthesizers employs a distinct rhythm playing a swing in harmony. Songs such as "reflexion" (exile one), "moin anvi danse" (liquid ice), "mwen di ou fe" (black affairs), etc. use a rhythmic keyboard instead of (or in addition to) the rhythmic guitar. Also, the cadence or compas tune "cadence-lypso" confirms the same guitar scratch, bass, 2/4, rhythmic and mostly the team up conga-cowbell-drum, which is the most distinguishable feature of the meringue. It is usually aggressive and originally featured a full-horn section and synthesizers.
Cadence-lypso or kadans Orchestras
The Culture of Dominica and The French Antilles
Guadeloupe (Basse Terre and Grande Terre) and its dependancies: Marie Galante, Les Saintes and La Désirade is located in the leeward Islands region of the Caribbean. The French islands of Saint Martin and Saint Barts were dependants of Guadeloupe.
Dominica, officially "The Commonwealth of Dominica" is an island nation located in the Lesser Antilles region of the Caribbean, between the Leeward Islands and the Windward Islands. To the North lies Guadeloupe and to the South lies Martinique.
Martinique has played an important role in the culture of the Caribbean. Dominica, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent & The Grenadines, Grenada and Trinidad & Tobago have been colonized by French Colonists from Martinique. Through Martinique, these islands speak a French creole language.
French planters and their slaves from Martinique, Dominica, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent & The Grenadines, and Grenada emigrated to Trinidad & Tobago during the French Revolution establishing local communities. Carnival had arrived with the French; the slaves who could not take part in carnival formed their own parallel celebration call Canboulay. Canboulay (from the French “Burnt Cane”) is a precursor for Trinidad & Tobago Carnival. The festival is where Calypso music has it roots through the Chantwell who sung songs called Kaiso.
Canboulay Riots has played an important role in the development of the music of Trinidad & Tobago for it led to the banning of African percaussion instruments that led to the creation of steel pan music.
The West African Kaiso is a precursor for Calypso music. After Trinidad & Tobago became a British colony, Calypso became sung in English and the Chantwell became known as the Calypsonian. The Chantwell sung originally in a French creole language. Calypso has influenced a variety of Caribbean styles including the Jamaican Mento and Dominica Cadence-lypso.
In modern Trinidad, Calypso has become replaced by Soca music. Soca combined the melodic lilting sounds of Calypso with the American Soul(Soul+Calypso=Soca) and Cadence music from Dominica and the French Antilles. East Indian elements are prominent in Soca: a style call chutney music.
The Trinidadian Carnival, Calypso, Steel pan and Soca music has become popular across the English Speakiing Caribbean islands.
Calypso influence on Jamaican music
Mento is a style of music from Jamaica influenced by Calypso and Jamaican folk traditions. Mento is a precursor for Ska and Reggae. By combining the Jamaican Mento and Calypso with the American Rhythm & Blues, the musicians of Jamaica developed the Ska music. Ska evolved into a slower version call Rocksteady and Reggae music.
Reggae was popularized by Bob Marley & The Wailers who incoperated Nyabinghi and Rastafarian influences to their music: a style call Roots reggae. Due to the popularity of Bob Marley, Reggae became popular across the world influencing styles such as Lovers rock, Reggae en Espanol, Reggaeton, Dancehall, Raggamuffin, Dub, Toasting, Hip Hop, Drum n Bass, Grime and many more.
The Music of Dominica and The French Antilles
Dominica and the French Antilles is known for Cadence-lypso and Zouk: styles influenced by the Haitian cadence. The Haitian cadence or compas music has been dominating the Antillean scene since the early 60's.
Cadence-Lypso is a musical genre from Dominica popularized by Grammacks and Exile One in the early 70's. The most influencial figure in the development of Cadence-Lypso was Exile One (based on the island of Guadeloupe) that combined the Haitian compas/cadence rampa with the Trinidadian calypso, however most of the band repertoire was compas. Cadence-Lypso or the Dominica compas has influenced styles such as zouk, bouyon (another Dominican creation) and soca music.
Zouk or Zouk beton is a fast tempo carnival music originating from the Caribbean islands of Guadeloupe and Martinique popularized by the French Antilles Kassav in the early 80's. Under the influence of well known Antillean and Dominican cadence or compas bands such as Experience 7, Grammacks and Exile One, they decided to record Compas and French Antillean carnival music using digital technology: the precursor for Zouk beton and Digital compas.
Zouk Love is the French Antilles compas: a special style within the zouk where the music is slower and more dramatic. It has its origin in a slow tempo form of cadence sung by Ophelia Marie of Dominica. The music Kizomba and Kuduro from Angola and Cabo Zouk from Cabo Verde are derivatives of zouk.
Gordon Henderson, Exile One’s lead singer and founder featured a full-horn section and was the first to introduce synthesizers to compas music. Many compas bands from Haiti(Mini-jazz) and the French Antilles emulated that format in the 70's. In the early 80's, the French Antilles Kassav was the first to introduce digital technolgy to their music: Haitian compas bands introduced that digital technology creating Compas/New Generation compas. New Generation compas has become popular across the French Caribbean, France and Africa. New Generation compas and the French Antilles compas has established a huge musical market.
In Africa, Cabo Zouk, Cabo Love, Cola-Zouk, Kizomba, Kuduro, Zouk Bass, Coupé-Décalé, Zouglou, Gumbe and many more have been influenced by zouk and compas music. In Brazil, Zouk combined with the Brazillian Lambada creating Zouk-Lambada or Brazillian Zouk. As a dance and music, Zouk-Lambada has become popular across the world.
In the Caribbean, Cadence-Lypso and Zouk has integrated into soca music. Soca combined the melodic lilting sounds of Calypso with the American Soul(Soul+Calypso=Soca) and Cadence music from Dominica and the French Antilles. Soca has become popular across much of the English Speaking Caribbean islands. East Indian elements are prominent in Soca: a style call chutney music. In Trinidad, Chutney music combined soca as Chutney-soca. In Dominica, Bouyon combined soca music as Bouyon soca. Bouyon soca is popular in Dominica and the French Antilles.
Bouyon is a popular music of Dominica created by the WCK or Windward Caribbean Kulture in the late 80's. Bouyon music combined Cadence-lypso with traditional rhythms of Dominica. In Guadeloupe and Martinique, “Jump up” refers genarally to bouyon music.
Triple K International has played an important role in the development of bouyon creating a New Generation of bouyon music. New Generation bouyon became popular in the French island of Guadeloupe(Gwada) creating Bouyon gwada. A popular off shoot of bouyon gwada is Bouyon hardcore combining elements of dancehall and hip hop from the French Antilles.
Dominica and the French Antilles has established a popular musical industry based on bouyon, dancehall, hip hop, reggae, cadence-lypso, zouk and compas music.
Other folk styles include:
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- Jocelyne Guilbault. Zouk: world music in the West Indies. Retrieved April 10, 2012.
- Malena Kuss, ed. (2007). Music in Latin America and the Caribbean: An Encyclopedic History. Volume 2: Performing the Caribbean Experience. U of Texas P. p. 305. ISBN 9780292784987. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
- Neva Wartell. "Zouk - Tracing the History of the Music to its Dominican Roots". The Dominican. Reprinted from National Geographic. Retrieved August 10, 2010.
- Jocelyne Guilbault. Haitian+Kompa++the+development+of+zouk+love&source. Retrieved April 10, 2012.
- Jocelyne Guilbault. www.Haitianobserver.com. Retrieved April 10, 2012.