Pygmy music, as it is found in Africa.
Pygmy is a term used for various ethnic groups worldwide whose average height is unusually short; anthropologists define pygmy as any group whose adult men grow to less than 150 cm (59 inches) in average height1. The map below shows the areas in the equatorial forest of Africa where they can be found, distributed over several nations.
Pygmy music is especially remarkable because it is one of the few truly polyphonic traditions which developed outside of Western Europe.
Oscar van Dillen
The audio comes from a French musicological recording of the 1960s and had the song of the Mbombokwe: the Woodpecker, dramatically performed by a village storyteller.
Rare footage of Babongo Pygmies of Congo, in a Village in the Jungle (the deafening silence in the forest seems to provoke the making of music as a necessity?).
Babongo: “The last Pygmies of Congo”
Mari, a Baka Pygmy, playing a Limbindi (Cameroon).
Baka Pygmy women polyphony
Yelli songs by Baka Pygmy women (superb quality).
(2020 addition) The Baka are at present under political threat, as reported by The Guardian.
Kumuka film from 1993 — Efe Pygmy Visit, Zaire, including very interesting music (especially in parts 2 and 3).
Kamuka part 1
Kamuka part 2
Kamuka part 3
Kamuka part 4
Kamuka part 5
Mbuti Pygmies Ituri Rainforest, sound track (1956 & 1957)
Short cuts of the Geneva Concert of Ndima, a Pygmy group that performs all over the world.
1930s english film about Pygmys constructing a bridge (scene with music: flutes, drums, singing).