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Sounds of Haiti

Some say that Haiti has been in perpetual revolution for 200 years. If so, then that revolution has a soundtrack: one that began with the rattle of the Taino caciques; that invokes healing and fighting spirits with the drums and chants of rada and petwo in Vodou; and that continues to express the appetite for freedom through the sly double meanings (betiz) in the songs of Carnival and rara, the cathartic dance rhythms of konpa and the compelling global edge of mizik rasin (roots music). The music of Haiti is a synthesis of Taino, African, and European music created out of often violent encounters, but has come to reflect great pride in their independent nation.

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