Abi sent this version of Tue Tue with this note:

"I understand you have found a Ghanaian version of this song and you might find this information below of interest as well, as I know many versions exist of most African songs as it is, after all, the natural outcome of a mostly aural tradition.

As far as I'm aware, this is a song which accompanies the Moribayassa rhythm of the Malinke people from Northeast Guinea.

Moribayassa is a rhythm which is played only once in a woman's life, if at all. After she has overcome her lowest, toughest point, whether that be illness, or a child's illness. Afterwards she will fulfill her vow and dance Moribayassa.

The words of this version are actually..."

Tue Tue Mareema - Guinean Children's Songs - Guinea - Mama Lisa's World: Children's Songs and Rhymes from Around the World  - Intro Image


"Also, Guinean djembe master Mamady Keita has a book with more details of this rhythm, from which I paraphrased with the meaning above." -Abi


We welcome help with a translation of this version of "Tue Tue" and also to confirm the language. Abi wrote, "I'm pretty sure Twi is a language only spoken in Ghana, so this would not be Twi, as Moribyassa is a Guinean rhythm - around 37 languages are spoken in Guinea, so I'm not sure which one it is yet I'm afraid!" Yet the song is based on a Twi song, so perhaps the sounds were simply changed to make it more pronounceable to the singers. If anyone can provide more info, please email me. Thanks! Mama Lisa



Thanks to Abi Bailey for sharing her recording!

Thanks and Acknowledgements

Many thanks to Abi Bailey for sharing this version of "Tue tue". Abi wrote, "Many thanks to Samantha Everett for teaching me this song."

Photo: "Mandinka Dancing, Women's Cultural Celebration, Gambia 2006" by shaunamullally - [1]. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.