1001 South African Songs You Must Hear Before You Go Deaf

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Archive for the tag “Cragie Dodds”

God’s Window – Egyptian Nursery

God’s Window - Egyptian Nursery

God’s Window – Egyptian Nursery

God’s Window is a viewing point of some stunning scenery near Bourke’s Luck potholes in Mpumalanga near the town of Graskop. The viewing points looks out over a valley and some beautiful mountains. There is a sense of serenity whenever one is faced with such beauty and it’s not surprising that people call it God’s Window.

It’s not clear if Egyptian Nursery had this particular bit of scenery in mind when they wrote the song ‘God’s Window’, but whether they did or not, they were certainly thinking the same thoughts one does as one looks out over the world. The song is a chilled out affair that seems to capture the beauty and peace of majestic mountains and beautiful valleys. There is even a repeated flute-y sound emulating the cry of a bird that you would hear when looking at such a view.

Arlene Bechard’s vocals float lazily like that bird catching the updrafts, stretching its wings as it glides across the land while Cragie Dodds’ beats take one along on the journey, colouring in the scenery with African sounds that root the song in the continent. About halfway through we are treated to some French rapping from Mojama Kalume, the final member of the band.
The album of the same name features an ‘Easy Mix’ which was also included in the second ‘Breathe Sunshine’ compilation, but this a drum and bass mix and, to my mind, less easy on the ear than the original version. It’s good laid-back drum and bass if you like that kind of thing, but its not my personal favourite.

I wish my eyes could see though God’s Window/I wish that I could see myself through God’s Window’ sings Arlene. Well all she needs to do is to put this track on, close her eyes and imagine herself looking out over the hills and valleys of Mpumalanga and she’ll be there. And due to the wonders of modern technology, you can do so too.

Where to find it:
God’s Window – Egyptian Nursery (2000), Blue Flame Records, 398 50382

Videos:
Original version:

Breathe Sunshine Easy Mix:

 

Oyebisi Nga – Egyptian Nursery

New Anthem - Egyptian Nursery

New Anthem – Egyptian Nursery

‘Oyebisi Nga’ finds Egyptian Nursery in a quiet mood, with an almost lullaby lilt to the song it floats gently along on a fluffy cloud as Mojama’s and Ariane’s sweet vocals make slow passionate love to each other, moving slowly on a bed of relaxed beats and scratches that Cragie Dodds provides. This is a sensual lights-down-low song. It lights a hundred candles to create a misty soft light.

The lyrics are sung in a mixture of English and Lingala (a language spoken in Mojama’s native Congo). The language should not sound too unfamiliar to the South African ear as it is part of the same “Bantu Languages” that Zulu comes from. While the shapes and sounds of the words are not completely foreign, the meaning may escape us. But, there is no misinterpreting the emotion in the voices.

This is chill-out at its best. In fact this song could be the one you finally drift off to after the hectic night of clubbing, followed by a time back home sitting around listening to quieter music to calm the pulse before eventually heading off to bed. It’s the chill-out track for chilling out to after listening to the rest of your chill-out music.

Where to find it:
God’s Window – Egyptian Nursery (2000), Fresh Music, FREDCD100

Video:

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