Chouk Bwa Libète
For most of the modern era, vodou (or voodoo) dance and rhythms have been practiced far away from prying foreign eyes. The deep hypnotic drum beats and rituals, built around percussion instruments and call and response vocals, were kept secret to such an extent that it’s hard to think of any other form of music that has been so misinterpreted and slandered by a dominant culture.
That’s something that Chouk Bwa Libète, a new Haitian group from Petite Rivière des Bayonnais is changing as they travel the world to introduce people around the globe to their undiluted form of traditional vodou music. Unlike other exports from Haiti, such as Boukman Eksperyans, Chouk Bwa Libète does not add any other instruments into their musical mix. They rely solely on the interplay between the four percussionists and two dancers to create deep and unchoreographed rhythms that encourage audience members to get up, shake themselves off and surrender to a magical trance experience.