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Benny and Maria Wenda are members of the Lani ethnic group, many of whom still follow traditional ways of life that are said to have changed little since the Stone Age. But as a musician, and as leader of the Koteka Tribal Assembly, Benny became involved in the separtist movement in West Papua: the region has been internationally recognised as a provice of Indonesia since the 1960s, but the movement claims that traditional Papuan cultue is being supressed. Benny escaped from prison by the Indonesian authorities five years ago, and he and Maria now live in exile in the UK. Their songs reflect traditional Lani values, and the struggle to assert the culture of West Papua. Besides this studio session, Senegalese DJ Dudu Sarr and UK music critic Nigel Williamson review new CD releases.

The Lani Singers: Ap Aike (Benny and Maria Wenda) (3:30)
BBC Studio recording

Rokia Traore: Kounandi (5:25)
Album: Tchamantché
Universal/Nonesuch 7559799345, track 5

Comrade Fatso and Chabvondoka: Mahara (4:35)
Album: House of Hunger
Private release

Mariza: J√° me Deixou (Artur Ribeiro, Max) (3:44)
Album: Terra
EMI 50999 2 29423 2 6, track 1

Renata Rosa: Cacador (Trad. arr. Renata Rosa) (4:09)
Album: Manto dos Sonhos, track 4

Terakaft: Akh Issudar (Kedou Ag Ossad, Terakaft) (4:35)
Album: Akh Issudar
IRL IRL039, track 1

Lani Singers: Mutok (Benny and Maria Wenda) (3:20)
BBC Studio recording

Lani Singers: Way-ya-o-yia (Benny and Maria Wenda) (3:15)
BBC Studio recording

1 hour

Last on

Sat 27 Sep 2008 15:00
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