By Shauna Jemmott
AIMED at the restoration of values and interlocking hearts and visions of Guyanese, the government of Guyana has collaborated with a few responsible musicians to produce a masterpiece musical album featuring songs of our nation.The album remains untitled up to press time, but National Commemoration Committee CEO, Laurie London, who spearheading the project said it was President David Granger who recognized the need for the restoration of the songs and the reintroduction of national value systems in schools.
In a casual talk with Pepperpot Friday, London said “It was the president’s idea for us to unify this nation… to heal this nation” and through widespread distribution and access to the patriotic songs Guyanese will be able to understand the values of nationhood and cherish what we have.
“For many, many years we have not been very careful about trying to promote what is Guyanese. Many young Guyanese do not know what we have. It shouldn’t have been that way. We have to correct it,” said London.
He said President Granger has also decided that the music will be distributed free of cost to each of the several hundred schools countrywide, from nursery to senior secondary London said, while some will be available for sale to persons in Guyana and abroad.
Fifty national songs are being selected by the music director of the Guyana Defence Force, Major Robert Burns, and music director of the Guyana Police Force Mr. Cecil Bovell , and will be recorded with the army and police bands as well as the award-winning ‘Circle of love’ contemporary Guyanese band. Burchmore Simon at Kross Kolor Studios will undertake the recording aspect of the project.
London assures that music will be carefully chosen, and will include some folk songs, to ensure an album suitable for children’s hearing. The songs have already been selected and are being edited to ensure the most appropriate are on the audio album.
Some Guyanese do not know we have as over 50 national songs and that is the problem which the government is now trying to fix.
The project represents our heritage and existence and aims also at building consciousness of Guyanese and helping a people to protect what they have.
Clayton Hinds, one of the “Circle of Love” musicians said the group has daily rehearsals to perfect the compositions and they are hoping to complete recordings by the end of November.
“We are in the process of doing arrangements and have it ready for studio. We are hoping to complete our arranging and studio work by the end of November so that it can be launched. We’re working right now assiduously to finish. We have slated ourselves for next month end,” he said and added that arrangement takes time.
Hinds said his group boasts incredible performances. The group was selected to perform for former Brazilian President Lula DaSilva when he visited Guyana in November, 2010.
The album of national songs is supported by private financiers and the Ministry of Education, particularly Minister with responsibility for Culture, Nicholette Henry.
Booklets containing over one hundred national songs will also be produced and distributed to schools.
By Shauna Jemmott