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Suggestions for an a cappella lively processional

Well, my goodness  - it took me a while to see that to post here one has to click on forums posts first and then get the "new message"  button up.  
Now that that's out the way, I'll put this in the Community Forum before the main section since then I don't have to explain myself so much - world music choir conductors will all immediately understand what I'm looking for!    I did a search but it didn't come up with anything suitable.
We need an upbeat, lively, voices only, preferably secular song which lends itself to a processional.    I'd like SAB,  but we can handle 2 or 4+ parts.     We are looking at some African songs and don't mind if they are religious - we sing them in the native language.   We are also looking at Jamaiican, Israeli...well anything really.
Siyahamba is too easy .  
Freedom Train is too easy. 
Keep Your Lamps Trimmed and Burning doesn't have the mood we need
Shosoloza's tempo is too slow for what we want - so is Wana Baraka
Mungu ni Pendo is both too easy and too slow
Bonse Aba they've done to death
Jabula Jesu  looks like a good possibility
The singers handle syncopation and mixed rhythms very well.    They quite like dancing down the aisles.   This processional is not a be-robed serious affair.    It's more to shock the relatives in the audience into thinking  "Wow - is THIS what they are singing every week!".
New compositions are welcome if we can afford them.   
Hope that gives enough info for some suggestions.    Anyone got some gems they can fling my way?   
Replies (4): Threaded | Chronological
on December 18, 2010 3:06am
Hi Jane
I agree -- these community forums do seem more complicated than the regular ones. But I'm glad you managed to figure out how to post!
I probably have loads of possibilities for you, but ... first I'd like to know what exactly you mean by a 'processional'.
You say that Shosholoza is too slow, but I've done it successfully as an entering song so maybe you mean something different.
From my experience, anything with tricky rhythms can easily go awry when the choir is trying to process at the same time, especially if the procession is long and thin (like coming down a church aisle).
on December 19, 2010 7:15pm
Thanks for your response, Chris.  Maybe if  you've done Shosholoza as an entrance I should re-consider - it just seemed a bit on the ponderous side.    
We need to come from the behind a small  audience of about 300 in a secular setting.   There are 2 aisles we would use.     I would already be in the front keeping the beat and would be quite visible to the singers.     I'm imagining something upbeat and dance-able and dramatic, using not only voices, but clapping and body percussion.   
The word processional has connotations of a serious "walk-as-you-sing" kind of entrance, so it's not really a processional - don't know what other word to use.
Because we would be using 2 aisles, I'm thinking that a call and response thing may be effective, but I'm very inexperienced at "entrances"   so not sure.   
on January 4, 2011 8:56am
Off the top of my head, here are some African songs that might suit:
Akanamandla (S. Africa) -- lots of different sections, call and response, different rhythms and moods, etc. I have a great arrangement via Northern Harmony plus a few additions
Aluta continua (Angola) -- I've used this as a high-energy entrance, it's in Portuguese and comes from a longer song Shona Malanga which might also work
Koloi ya Elija (S. Africa) -- another one from Northern Harmony
Ndine siphonono (S. Africa)
Babethandaza (S. Africa)
Helele mama (Zimbabwe)
Vamudara (Zimbabwe
That's probably enough to be going on with! Let me know if you need any more info.
on January 4, 2011 6:51pm
Great - thanks Chris.   We sing almost half of them so will investigate the other half.  
Much appreciated
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