First Steps in Global Music - Resource Page

Karen Howard

First Steps in Global Music

Download audio files of songs and pronunciations.

Additional Resources



Selected Recordings for Music from Africa:



African Songs & Rhythms for Children. (1990).

Smithsonian Folkways Records.

Ewe Music of Ghana. (1969/2004).

Smithsonian Folkways Records.

Folk Music of Ghana. (1964).

Smithsonian Folkways Records.

Ghana Children at Play. (1976/2004).

Smithsonian Folkways Records.

Music of the Ashanti of Ghana. (1979/2004).

Smithsonian Folkways Records.




Children’s Songs from Kenya. (1975).

Folkways Records.

Gospel Songs from Kenya. (1976).

Folkways Records.

Music of the Waswahili of Lamu, Kenya (3 Volumes). (1985).

Folkways Records.



Sing to the Well: Wagogo People Tanzania. (2005).

Voices from the Nations.

Tanzania: Chants Wagogo. (2011).

Collection Ocora.


Selected Books / Articles for Music from Africa:


African Songs and Rhythms for Children.

By W. K. Omoaku. Schott Publications.

Kenya Sing and Dance.

By Tim Gregory.

Let Your Voice Be Heard. (1997).

By Abraham Adzeniyah, Dumisani Maraire, and Judith Cook Tucker.

Danbury, CT: World Music Press.

Music in West Africa: Experiencing Music, Expressing Culture. (2005).

By Ruth M. Stone. New York: Oxford Music Press.

Musical Labor Performed in Northwest Tanzania. (2015).

By Frank Gunderson.

Sowah Mensah. Materials available through

Adenkum. (2009). A group of songs and chants.

Welcome Song. (2009). A piece for gyil (Ghanaian xylophones).

Sii Sii Sii. (2010). Arrangement for singing and drums.

Sowah’s Drum Sequence. (2016). Learn the basic fundamentals of Ghanaian music.

Salabi Ye. (2017). Children’s song with accompanying DVD.


Selected Videos for Music from Africa:


iASO Records. (January 12, 2007).

Kora music from West African Griot lankandia cissoko.

[YouTube video].

Musical Labor Performed in Northwest Tanzania. (2015).

Por Por Honk Horn Music of Ghana: The La Drivers Union Por Por Group. (2007).

SublimeWorldProd. (August 28, 2014). Sounds from Ghana.

[YouTube video].

theghanaproject2013. (March 10, 2014). Sample video of Ghanaian traditional music.

[YouTube video].

This World Music.






Selected Websites for Music from Oceania:

Introduction to traditional Aboriginal music.

This is the website for Heiva, the Tahitian music festival.


Selected Recordings for Music from Oceania:


Australia: Aboriginal Music. (1977).

Smithsonian Folkways Records.

Australian Ballads: The Early Years. (1981).

Smithsonian Folkways Records.

Australia: Music from the New England Tablelands of New South Wales, 1850-1900. (1998).

Smithsonian Folkways Records.

Maori Songs of New Zealand. (1952).

Smithsonian Folkways Recordings.

Royal Tahitian Dance Company. (1974).

Smithsonian Folkways Recordings.

Songs of Aboriginal Australia and Torres Straits. (1964).

Smithsonian Folkways Records.


Selected Books / Articles for Music from Oceania:


10 Classic New Zealand Children’s Books.

100 Best Kiwi Children’s Books.

Diversity in Australia’s Music: Themes Past, Present, and for the Future. (2018).

By Doryotta Fabian and John Napier (Eds.). Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

Houkulele Tahitian & Polynesian Songbook.

Maori Music. (1996). By Mervyn McLean. Auckland University Press.


Selected Videos for Music from Oceania:


AIG. (October 6, 2014). Haka-History

[YouTube Video].

Spirit Gallery. (September 28, 2013). Didgeridoo Meets Orchestra

[YouTube Video].

Tahiti Nui Télévision. (July 20, 2018). Heiva i Tahiti 2018 – Soirée des laureates

[YouTube Video].






Selected Recordings for Music from Asia:



Melodies and Rhythms of Arabic Music. (1981).

Smithsonian Folkways.

Middle Eastern Songs and Dances for Children.

Available through

Piano Music of the Middle East. (1978).

By Amiram Rigai.

Travel with Me My Dove and Listen to Me! Songs from the Middle East. (1976.)

By Margalit Ankory.



Yemen: Traditional Music of the North. (1978).

Yemenite and Other Israeli Folksongs. (1958).

By Geula Gill.



Lebanon: The Baalbek Folk Festival. (1994).

By Fairuz. Smithsonian Folkways.



China: A Musical Anthology of the Orient. (1985).


China: Chuida Wind and Percussive Instrumental Ensembles. (1992).


Music of China from Smithsonian Folkways (A Playlist). (2014).



Japan: Semiclassical and Folk Music. (1974).


Traditional Folk Dances of Japan. (1959).

Folkways Records.

Traditional Folk Songs of Japan. (1961).

Smithsonian Folkways.



Music of Indonesia (20 volume collection). (1995).

Smithsonian Folkways Recordings.

Selected Books for Music from Asia:


20 Children’s Books set in the Middle East and Northern Africa.

Gending Raré: Children’s Songs and Games from Bali. (2017).

By Brent Talbot. GIA Publications, Inc.

Read Globally: 9 Folktales, Fables, and Stories That Introduce

Chinese Culture and History to Kids.


Selected Videos for Music from Asia:


“Rast” by Rahim Alhaj and Souhail Kaspar. (2005).

Sumunar Minnesota.

[YouTube Channel]. Features Javanese music and dance.






Selected Recordings for Music from North America:



Canada: Inuit Games and Songs. (1976).


Folk Songs of France and French Canada. (1957).

By Jacques Labrecque. Folkways Records.

Game Songs of French Canada. (1956).

Folkways Records.

Songs of French Canada. (1955). By Hélène Baillargeon and Alan Mills.

Folkways Records.





Guatemala: Chapinlandia – Marimba Music of Guatemala. (2007).

Smithsonian Folkways Recordings.

Music of Guatemala (Volumes 1 & 2). (1969).

Folkways Records.



Mariachi Music of Mexico. (1954).

Cook Records.





Para Todos Ustedes. (2005).

By Los Pleneros de la 21. Smithsonian Folkways Records.

Puerto Rico in Washington. (1996).

By Marcial Reues y sus Pleneros and Cuerdas De Borinquen.

Smithsonian Folkways Recordings.



Café Cubano. (2008).

Putumayo Records.

Folk Music of Cuba. (1995).


Sacred Rhythms of Cuban Santería. (1995).

Smithsonian Folkways Recordings.




Music of Haiti: Vol. 1, Folk Music of Haiti. (1951).

Folkways Records.


Selected Books / Articles for Music from North America:


Tito Matos: Puerto Rican plena drummer.

Los Pleneros de la 21: Afro-Puerto Rican traditions.


Selected Videos for Music from North America:


Carlos Mejía Discusses Marimba Traditions. (2006).

Fandango-Bombazo (Puerto Rican Jam Session) at 2006 Smithsonian Folklife Festival. (2006).

“La Bamba” by José Gutiérrez and Los Hermanos Ochoa from

La Bamba: Sones Jarochos from Veracruz. (2005).

“Mexico Lindo” by Natividad “Nati” Cano from Llegaron Los Camperos!:

Nati Cano’s Mariachi. (2005).






Selected Recordings for Music from South America:



Brazil: Songs of Protest.

Monitor Records.

Music of Brazil from Smithsonian Folkways Playlist. (2014).

Songs & Dances of Brazil. (1956).

Folkways Records.



Music of Peru from Smithsonian Folkways Playlist. (2015).

Traditional Music of Peru Series (8 Volumes). (2002).

Smithsonian Folkways.



Chile: Hispano-Chilean Metisse Traditional Music. (1988).


Que Viva el Canto! Songs of Chile. (2008). By Rafael Manríquez.

Smithsonian Folkways Records.


Selected Books / Articles for Music from South America:


Black Rhythms of Peru: Reviving African Musical Heritage in the Black Pacific. (2006).

By Heidi Carolyn Feldman. Middletown, CT: Wesleyan University Press.

Culture and Customs of Chile. (2000).

By Guillermo Castillo-Feliú. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.

Luiz Bonfá: Brazilian Bossa Nova Guitarist.

Music in Brazil: Experiencing Music, Expressing Culture. (2006).

By John Patrick Murphy. New York: Oxford Music Press.

The Music of Brazil. (1989). By David Appleby. University of Texas Press.


Selected Videos for Music from South America:


A Taste of Afro-Peruvian Music. (Dec. 22, 2016).

By Tony Succar.

Chilean traditional folk dance: Huasos. (Jul 14 2011).

“The Great Inka Road” Family Day 6 – Peruvian Music & Dance. (Sept 17, 2015).






Selected Recordings for Music from Europe:



Lithuanian Folk Songs in the United States. (1955).

Folkways Records.

Lithuanian Songs and Dances.

Monitor Records.

Songs of Amber. (1990). By Amber.

Mickey Hart Collection.



Bulgaria: Musics and Musicians of the World. (1983).


Koutev Bulgarian National Ensemble.

Monitor Records.



Memories of Poland. By Bolek Zawadski.

Monitor Records.

Polish Folk Songs and Dances. (1954).

Folkways Records.

The Polish State Folk Ballet “Slask”: The Silesian Song and Dance Ensemble. (1996).

Monitor Records.


Selected Books / Articles for Music from Europe:


Georgian polyphonic singing.

Sutartinės, Lithuanian multipart songs.


Selected Videos for Music from Europe:


47 International Festival of Highland Folklore in Zakopane 2015. (Aug 28, 2015).

Le Mystere des Voix Bulgares – Full Performance (Live on KEXP). (Jun 27, 2017).

Rustavi Choir (Georgian Polyphony) Channel.

Zedashe (Georgian Folk Group). YouTube Channel.