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Let's Make Some NoiseAxe and the African Roots of Brazilian Popular Music$
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Clarence Bernard Henry

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9781604730821

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781604730821.001.0001

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Sacred/Secular Influences

Sacred/Secular Influences

The Reinvention of West African Àsé in Brazil

(p.24) 1 Sacred/Secular Influences
Let's Make Some Noise

Clarence Bernard Henry

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter examines the ancestral origins of the religious context of West African àsé and how it has been reinvented, negotiated, altered, secularized, and accommodated in Brazilian culture as axé. It investigates how musicians have reinvented and secularized sacred axé of Candomblé in popular songs that they link with African roots, black identity, and Afro-Brazilian culture. The chapter describes a type of “global spreading” of axé in popular culture through commercial recordings and performances by international artists and Carnival organizations. It also suggests that axé concepts often mediate racial identities and social classes.

Keywords:   West African àsé, Brazilian culture, Candomblé, popular songs, Afro-Brazilian culture, popular culture, commercial recordings, international artists, Carnival organizations

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