by Work the World

Students are always talking about the great Busy Bees cover bands in Pokhara and last week some of our students in Mwanza ended up going to the Serengeti Fiesta where they got to see Shaggy as well as a whole host of local bands. This week we have decided to ask the houses Are you enjoying the local music, does it get you dancing and is there a type of music or song that has defined your stay?”

The most popular style of music in Tanzania is Bongo Flava which is the nickname for Tanzanian hip-hop music.  Jennifer in Arusha was quick to jump in with “I definitely like the local music – it’s the thing that brings everyone together from all backgrounds and encourages them to dance. It was great seeing the children at the orphanage dance. It can be a way to communicate, the language of music automatically lights up everyone’s faces!”

Lesley-Ann agreed, “I had so much fun with the music and dancing and really loved most of the songs playing. I think I must have lost a few pounds because you couldn’t get me off the dance floor. The one song that sticks in my head is “Waka Waka Africa” by Shakira”

Arryl preferred the more traditional music; “My favourite music when the Maasai warriors and Maasai women were singing. I enjoyed shaking my shoulders and jumping in the circle to the sounds of their voices. Their cultural songs and dances are unique and beautiful.”

The local music definitely gets the students dancing in Ghana and when Joe went ahead and asked the question he got a lot of laughter. Phoebe said "It definitely does you know. The funny thing is even when you've had a long day and you’re trying to relax with your food, you can't help it but start the dance in your head".

And this is a reflection of the general feeling among even the new students who have just arrived this week. Mary admitted that “most of the students confirmed that when they first arrive and everyone is talking about the BBQ, they get slightly anxious about getting the dance moves right.” But Jothie thinks that “the music dictates the moves and it is pretty nice when everyone knows how to dance to a particular song"

The genre of music in Ghana that gets everyone on their feet dancing is Hip Life which we have playing at our weekly BBQ. Hip Life is the hybrid of High Life and the current trend of Hip hop music and the rhythm is easy to dance to.

Some of the favourite songs in the house at the moment are "I need an African Man" "If Your Girlfriend no dey do you fine......" and Asamoah Gyan's(Professional footballer)"Do the dance"  So we are doing the dance with the Hip Life music which everyone enjoys!

The girls in Mendoza have been going out a lot and are really enjoying the music. “Out at the clubs and bars we listen to a lot of Reggaeton which is a mixture of reggae and hip hop” says Kimmy.  She thinks that the one song that will always remind her of Argentina is “Danza Kuduro” by Don Omar because “it is always on at local clubs. It really sticks in your head and someone's always singing it at the house!”

Delia told us that her stay in Mendoza has been defined by a radio station called 94.9 La Brava. “It is always on in the house and the hospital. It plays Argentine local music as well as some from the USA”.  She also said that the electronic club scene is good.

But the song that has definitely marked most of the students' stay in Mendoza is one by Poncho and Maxi Trusso. “They've been playing it all day, every day, on the radio.  At first we thought it was called Policeman Girl and that's what we kept on singing - Policeman Girl! Policeman Girl! says Louise “But then someone suggested the lyrics said Please me Girl.They all listened to the song a thousand times and still couldn't figure out its lyrics, even though they were in English! They had to look them up on the internet and found that the songs actual name is Please me. “We had been singing it wrong for weeks! Now we can't help laughing every time they play it on the radio!”

[caption id="attachment_2789" align="alignright" width="150" caption="Sweet Easy Club in Dar"][/caption]

In Dar es Salaam, the students regularly head down to the local club called Sweet Easy. Daren tells us that ‘’the live band is great!  They play a mixture of old Favourites and local African Music. The best song for Africa is KWAITO which will always remind me of Tanzania whenever I hear it’’

Sam agrees “Kwaito! It’s a big, big South African Tune which is very famous in Dar es Salaam. It gets everyone in the club dancing the same moves. Alpha, Mark and Rashid get those moves going!”

Pranamee thinks that “the local music is wonderful and very catchy. It really gets you moving even though people are staring! So far the most memorable songs have been Sean Kingston “why you wanna go’’ and Shakira “wakawaka”. Saleema says that the Sean Kingston song has been in my head all week! We went to Zanzibar made friends with some of the locals who taught us how to dance to it!”

There is also constant music playing in the villages. Linda mentions Kwaito again and says “I was in Kidodi village and I could hear the music playing whilst in the clinic, it was great... I love African music as it always inspires you to dance; I like the Vodacom Shuffle or as WTW know it, Alpha’s Dance!"

The students in Mwanza are also fans of the Tanzanian tunes. Darragh tells us that “During the village experience in Bukumbi we were introduced to a local dance and song which was completely breathtaking. Even when I return home I will continue listen to some of the music I have heard here. Music is played all over the place, in the market, the taxis, walking through town and at our weekly BBQ. I’m not much of dancer but I have tried to bust a move when I can!”

Killian agreed, “I think that the local music is excellent, really energetic and great to dance to! However, the song that has defined this stay has definitely got to be: Neil Young- Hey Hey My My! Try it!”

Many of our students in Sri Lanka have only recently arrived so are still getting to know the local music. They have been to see the traditional dancers at the YMBA. Renna reported back "The Kandyan dancing was a great experience. It was an amazing opportunity to see traditional costume and dance." There will be plenty more opportunity at the Perhara festival which runs throughout the month of August.

Nili, our Assistant Programme Manager in Kandy tells us that “Lots of Sri Lankans listen to Sri Lankan Pop music and Hindi music as well as western music. And we also have internationally famous musicians like Bathiya and Santhush, also Rock bands like Stigmata, and Paranoid Earthling. If you play any R & B, Kathak music or Hindi music and you can get me moving and grooving!”

After a couple of weeks of cultural questions we thought we’d bring this week’s question back to the clinical side of things as it is, after all, the main reason you do your elective!

We always try to prepare students as much as possible before they head overseas for their placement. Past experience has shown us that the more enthusiastic and pro-active you are, the more likely it is that you will get some fantastic hands-on experience.  This week we have decided to ask the students “What tips can you give for making the most out of your clinical experience?”

See you back here next week with the answers!

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