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My other country, this is why I love you. Jun. 26th, 2010 @ 12:53 pm
Yesterday, I talked about why I hate the vuvuzela; because it means you can't hear the singing.

Oddly enough, just this morning Chas pointed me to this link. Shosholoza, performed by the crowd, at Free State Stadium in Bloemfontein.

And because this is a South African crowd, it picks up a perfect multi-part harmony with ululation, the different parts coming together utterly beautifully.

The comments - despite this being a YouTube video - convey the kind of reaction it's getting. People post about getting goosebumps or finding themselves crying outright, and I can understand it - the power and beauty in that is amazing.

If you can watch that video and feel unmoved, there is something wrong with you as a person.

Oh my. Jun. 25th, 2010 @ 11:02 am
So, I was feeling kind of sad, and then Chas updated me on some World Cup developments, and I am less sad.

Because I was just reminded, before I go on to the actual discussion: I saw a weird commercial on SBS. It had a woman saying something like, "Soccer - or as we call it, football -" and I remain confused as hell, because not only was this on Australian TV, but she had an Australian accent.

There's a reason our team is called the Socceroos. We call it SOCCER. Football is... well, really it's a term that comes with an adjective, as a rule, because Australian Rules Football is the most defaultish, but that's usually called "footy", whereas football as a term is applied to all the forms of football - American football, rugby, Australian Rules, Gaelic, etc.

Association Football, however? Is soccer. We're not the Poms, here.

Heh, they just showed a funny clip from Santo Sam and Ed's Cup Fever: "Shocking miss on that goal. My mother could have scored that." Cut to: Proving this, with the assistance of Santo's mother. Who did, indeed, successfully kick the goal.

Oh, man, most adorable thing ever: Italian team singing along to their national anthem, one of the little South African kids who line up with them, while the rest look straight ahead like they're supposed to, looks up and gives a very "dude, wtf" expression to the Italian singing loudest and off-keyest.


In case people are worried about spoilers for stuff. )

At some point: My rant on why I hate hate hate the vuvuzela. Cheap plastic monotonal crap is not the traditional musical culture of South Africa, dammit. The traditional musical culture of South Africa is rich and vibrant and beautiful.

(Okay, apparently that point is now.)

I can think of only one other nation in the world whose national identity is so intrinsically linked to music as it is for South Africa. That nation is Wales, the land of song. South Africa has so much music.

And with the vuvuzelas droning, you can't hear the singing.

And seriously, which would you rather hear? A monotone buzz like the stadium is filled with bees, or Shosholoza in multi-part harmony?

I know my preference. It starts: "Shosholoza, ku lezontaba..."

(Also, if you don't know the song Shosholoza, you need to. Link goes to YouTube upload of what the uploader merely calls "the best version"; I can tell you that the performers are Ladysmith Black Mombazo. And theirs *is* the best pre-recorded version, it's true. Ignore the comments and probably the pictures on the video as well.)
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