A Drummer's Testament
drummers
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Chapter II-26:  Drummers' Medicines   <PDF file>

Drummers and medicine; the life of Alhaji Adam Mangulana; gandu, zambaŋa, teeli, etc.; jealousy among drummers; an example of the use of kabrɛ at a drum history performance

Paragraph outline
Proverbs and sayings
Dagbani words and other search terms
 


Contents outline by paragraph  <top of page>

Introduction

1.    many drummers use medicine; some are bukpahinima; many medicine in the family
2.    John’s medicine from Alhaji Adam an old thing in Alhaji Adam’s family
3.    John now has that medicine’s name and can pass it on

Comparing medicine to learning Baŋgumaŋa

4.    medicine not given free; a sacrifice; medicine man can determine its extent
5.    cannot question the medicine man about the sacrifice; killing a sheep to learn Baŋgumaŋa
6.    the sheep’s meat shared inside the family; compare to the sacrifices done by Ziong Lun-Naa Issahaku and Alhassan Kpɛma
7.    the sacrifice must be there in some form
8.    the sacrifice or payment is respect from the one looking for medicine or knowledge

Drummer’s medicines

9.    Alhaji Ibrahim does not have medicine, but drum itself is medicine, can protect
10.  drummers have medicine to protect themselves; good medicines are also there

Alhaji Adam and medicine

11.  Alhaji Adam has drummers’ medicines and maalams’ medicines; long life
12.  Dagbon’s oldest drummer; description of his greatness in his youth
13.  most of his friends are dead; his friend Palo-Naa still alive; the others are dead
14.  Alhaji Adam’s friend with warizuɣu medicine

How drummers use medicine against one another

15.  jealous drummers’ can use kabrɛ; Issa Maachɛndi’s brother
16.  Issa’s use of medicine for protection
17.  drummers use medicine to get drumming chieftaincy
18.  Tamale drummers do not have chieftaincy; not the same as other towns; many Tamale drummers do not have knowledge
19.  drummers use kabrɛ; protect themselves with muhili; bi tɔro kaŋkparambi to make somebody choke
20.  use of medicine against grave-diggers
21.  drummers use kabrɛ to tie another drummer who bluffs or who takes someone’s place at Samban’ luŋa
22.  example:  how Gulkpeogu Lun-Naa tied Duɣu Lun-Naa at Samban’ luŋa

Medicines to help drummers

23.  zambaŋa and zamban’ nuchee; quick hands like cat
34.  gaŋdu:  make drumming stand out; balgiri
35.  gaŋdu the senior medicine for drumming; has other types for respect
36.  how Alhaji Adam was loved because of medicine
37.  bɛ yum’ma also for drummers; paɣ’ di duɣi
38.  how gaŋdu helps drummers
39.  zambaŋa can make someone’s hand too fast
40.  Alhaji Ibrahim does not use medicine because his drumming is good; medicine already in the family; example:  his son Fatawu; also in Alhaji Mumuni’s house, no medicine
41.  many drummers do not use medicine
42.  medicine to give drummer stamina

Teeli

43.  remembering; used by singers of Samban’ luŋa
44.  use of animals to make teeli
45.  how teeli is made
46.  how teeli is used; should be used for a reason

Conclusion

47.  end of talk about drummers’ medicine


Proverbs and Sayings  <top of page>

You don’t give the medicine for free.

If some work wants something big, you can get something small to stand for the big thing.

There are some sorts of money which you see and then refuse to spend.

Medicine doesn’t show itself.

If you get medicine from somebody, you don’t have to be showing people that you have got medicine.

Friendship or brotherhood does not collect medicine for free.

A drum itself is medicine: it is medicine that is like custom.

If a drum is in your armpit, it can protect you.

“Dim pa taali”:  taali n-nyɛ li.
“It doesn’t matter":  it matters.

You do work so that people will be looking at you.

Drumming is inside the family, and so it is an inheritance.


Key words for ASCII searches  <top of page>

Medicines mentioned
balgiri
be yum' ma  (bɛ yum' ma)
bi toro kankparambi  (bi tɔro kaŋkparambi)
gandu  (gaŋdu)
kabrɛ
muhili
pag' di dugi  (paɣ' di duɣi)
teeli
warizugu  (warizuɣu)
zamban’ nuchee  (zambaŋ' nuchee)
zambanga  (zambaŋa)

Persons and titles
Abdulai  (drummer from Chaŋni)
Adam Lumbila  (Alhaji Adam Alhassan)
Alhaji Adam (Alhassan Mangulana)
Alhassan Abukari
Alhassan  (Ibrahim)
Alhassan Kpɛma
Choggo-Naa
Dimabi Lun-Naa
Dugu  (Duɣu)
Dugu Lun-Naa  (Duɣu Lun-Naa)
Fatawu  (Ibrahim)
Gulkpe-Naa
Gulkpe-Naa Alhassan
Gulkpeogu Lun-Naa
Ibrahim Lumbila
Iddrisu  (Maachɛndi)
Issa  (Maachɛndi)
Koforidua  (Mumuni)
Lun-Naa
Lun-Zoo-Naa Abukari
Maachendi  (Maachɛndi]
Mohamadu  (Neena)
Mumuni  (Abdulai)
Mumuni  (Koforidua)
Palo-Naa
Sampahi-Naa
Savelugu Palo-Naa
Sheni  (M’ba Sheni / Fuseini Alhassan)
Tampion Sampahi-Naa
Ziong Lun-Naa Issahaku
Zohe-Taha-Naa

Miscellaneous and musical terms
Bangumaŋa  (Baŋgumaŋa)
calabash
chieftaincy, chieftaincies
gungon  (guŋgɔŋ)
horsehead
kasigirba  (kasiɣirba)
kulnang  (kulŋaŋ)
luŋa
maalam, maalams
ŋmaanchee
maha
nantoo
nmaanchee  (ŋmaanchee)
paragachia
Samban' luŋa
timchibra

Proverbs
Dim pa taali,  taali n-nye li  (Dim pa taali,  taali n-nyɛ li)

Towns and places
Changni  (Chaŋni)
Choggo
Dagbon
Diari
Dimabi
Gulkpeogu
Kanvili
Karaga
Koforidua
Korli
Kumbungu
Mion
Nanton
Savelugu
Tampion
Yelizoli
Yendi
Ziong

Cultural groups
Dagbamba
Dagbana
Hausa