The North Caucasus

Polyphony in Georgia and the North Caucasus – Intro

Part singing occurs through most of Georgia and the North Caucasus. In general, the upper voices are sung by soloists while the rest accompany on bass in the limited … Continue reading

Polyphony in the North Caucasus

Unquestionably, Georgia is known for its polyphonic folk music but part-singing also occurs throughout most of the North Caucasus. According to ethnomusicologist Joseph Jordania, there are 2 distinct styles of polyphony (200b; 2006). The one that is found “everywhere” uses drones or ostinatos (sung in unison, 4ths, 5ths, and 8ves) … Continue reading 

The Bards and Ballads of the North Caucasus – Intro

Introduction: The next two posts return to the bards of the Caucasus but this time focusing on the practices in the North Caucasus and crossing over a little into Georgia. Because of the difficulty in accessing information, the following are piecemeal accounts of whatever … Continue reading 

The Bards and Ballads of the Northwest and Central North Cacucasus

The following post explores the bards of the Vainakh, the Adighe, and the Ossetians and takes a brief look at a Georgian bardic tradition. As is reported by Joseph Jordania (2006; 2000b), Amjad Jaimoukha (2005) and the website for the International Centre for Circassian Studies (ICCS) … Continue reading 

The Bards and Ballads of Dagestan

In times past in Daghestan, bards (only males) would hold contests in eloquence, with the loser reputedly loosing his head, literally. (Colarusso 1997 section 14) The bardic practice in Dagestan is more easily defined as a monophonic tradition since the Republic, at least … Continue reading 

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