Thursday, 31 July 2014

Seen today......

Today sneaked up on me......the very last day of the month.....the due date for many bills and services to be paid.
Where did the month of July go? Gosh, it sure went by quickly..... I still can't believe it.
Headed into the city to take care of  imminent payments and also to collect a few items.
We are almost at the end of our Crop Over season, with the climax on Kadooment Day Monday. The stores and the streets were gaily decorated with colourful buntings and flags and the tourists and locals alike were enjoying the lovely calypsos being played in the stores.
Running to catch the elevator in one store, I heard the sweet lively sounds of a Tuk band.....

The Tuk band is uniquely Barbadian and has its origins in the slave culture of 17th century Barbados, thus it remains one of the  indigenous forms of folk music on the island.

Originally banned by the English as subversive, plantation owners believed that the drums were being used to send messages between the slaves.
The tuk music surfaced officially after emancipation.

Originating from the fife and drum marching band of the 18th century British regiment, it seems the word "Tuk"  may have been derived from the Scottish word "touk" meaning to beat or sound an instrument.
Today the tuk band is made up of a base drum, a kettle drum (snare), a triangle or some other percussion instrument and a penny whistle which has replaced the fiddle as the lead instrument for the last 120 years.
The bands play an important part during any festive season, especially at Crop Over.
There are several tuk band schools to preserve the island's cultural heritage among the younger generation.
The Tuk Band is usually accompanied by costumed characters that are African in origin like Mother Sally, Shaggy Bear, the Donkey Man, and the Stiltman.
 Mother Sally with her exaggerated derriere represents female fertility and usually accompanies a tuk band.
The music is lively with a pulsating rhythm and Mother Sally chooses this little girl to dance with.
 Surrounded by such infectious music I found myself tapping my feet and doing a few dance moves myself.



I think the little girl is happy with a big grin on her face.
I should have recorded the performance but I didn't....sorry.
Here is a Youtube video link.....enjoy.


  1. Now that really is a lovely, happy way to spend time when shopping

    1. It was a nice touch and the tourists visiting the island for the Crop Over Season loved it.

  2. I saw a mother sally as part of a pan performance here in Toronto on Friday. here I was thinking it was uniquely bajan but I'm pretty sure the folk using it were mostly if not all Trini.

    1. A Mother Sally in a Trini production...interesting.
      How have you been....hope the little ones are well.
      Haven't seen you for a while, thought you had won the lottery and moved to some rich faraway destination leaving your roots behind.


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