Kanaval Vodou, Politics and Revolution on the Streets of Haiti by Leah Gordon

    Soul Jazz Books

      Currently out of print

      “This book contains the most disturbing but exhilarating photographs you are ever likely to see" Bill Drummond

      Soul Jazz Records' new photography book release is a fascinating combination of stunning photographs (by Leah Gordon), cultural, historical and anthropological text (with essays by Madison Smartt Bell, Don Cosentino, Myron Beasley, Richard Fleming and Kathy Smith) and unique oral histories.

      Vodou, sex, death and revolution are key ingredients in the stunning themes and visual imagery of the street theatre of Kanaval in Jacmel, Haiti, where the men drag-up, wear diabolic cow horns, whip lassos and carry around dismembered doll parts. Light years away from the sanitized corporate-sponsored tourist parades of carnival throughout the world, this event is a vessel for everyday Haitians to shock and sexualize through masquerade, to mock local politicians, replay the slave revolt that gave birth to Haiti, the world’s first Black Republic, and to commune with the dead, with both personal and historical ancestors.

      -------------------------------------------------------

      “After the devastation of the 2010 earthquake, Carnival was cancelled in Haiti — no one can remember the last time that happened,if ever. Thank the Lord and the Lwa that we have Leah Gordon’s astounding new book — which shows us all the beauty and awe

      of Haitian carnival and also teaches us, with its masterful photographs and prose, what that celebration means to Haiti and also to the human race.” Amy Wilentz (author of ‘The Rainy Season: Haiti Since Duvalier’)

      These photographs were taken in Haiti between 1995 -2009, the year before the recent devastating earthquake in Haiti. A percentage of the profit from this book will go to Ciné Institute, teaching video skills in Jacmel and Brand Aid, rebuilfding the artisanal community in Jacmel.

      “This book reveals a beautiful and strange worldJeremy Deller, Turner Prize Artist

      “This book is an adventure, full of horror, humour, sex, sensuality. The pictures have all the doubleness and capriciousness so typical of the Haitian psyche. Leah Gordon has been there again and again, year after year, digging almost forgotten details out, she has done her work. That’s what makes this book outstanding. Jorgen Leth, Filmmaker

      “This book contains the most disturbing but exhilarating photographs you are ever likely to see. One can only assume that Haiti is the most creative place on the globe. My advice is that you never go there in case you, in some small way, pollute their creativity with our bland western consumerist tastes. It is bad enough you are even holding the book. Buy it now and burn it before you have a chance to read it.” Bill Drummond

      ------------------------------------------------------

      From Don Consentino's text (extract):

      "There’s a lot of weird shit going down during Kanaval in Jacmel, and not much of it has to do with Comus and Rex tossing “throw” to sequined revellers in New Orleans, or hot babes shaking their booties in Bahia, or all those belching, farting, goosing, pissing crowds Mikhail Bakhtin panted after on the Carnival streets of Renaissance Paris.   Forget all the conventional wisdom and all the conventional images of other peoples’ Carnivals to dig what’s happening way down south in Jacmel.  Make it a Naked Lunch moment.  Look at Leah Gordon’s photographs the way William Borroughs told you to look at the end of your fork before sliding that pronged sausage into your mouth.  See it in all its naked weirdness before you consume it."

      From Richard Fleming's text (extract):

      "In Jacmel, on Haiti’s south coast, an army of aggressive youths swagger down the street. Smeared from head to toe with a vile concoction of cane syrup and powdered charcoal, they dart at the crowd, snarling like wild, rabid animals. As if the throng lining the road hasn’t already recoiled enough at the fearful spectacle, they swing long hemp whips through the air in whistling arcs. Adorned with Beelzebub’s horns, these demonic metaphors for the experience of slavery look as if they have just emerged from the La Brea tar pits, or bathed in a fresh geyser of black crude oil. They are the lanceurs de corde, the “rope-throwers”." 

      ------------------------------------------------------

      To coincide with the release of this book, Soul Jazz are also releasing a CD: "Rara in Haiti; Street Music of Haiti", recorded in Port au Prince by Soul Jazz Records. To accompany the riotous carnival sounds on this CD there is also excellent text by Richard Fleming (author of 'Walking to Guantanamo') and the striking photography of Leah Gordon. For more information or to buy this CD go here.

      Read reviews here:

      Daily Telegraph

      The Guardian

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          • Sarah Webster Fabio – Glimpses
          • The Kryptic Krew featuring Tina B – Jazzy Sensation
          • Roxanne Shanté – Bite This
          Tropicalia: The Definitive 1968 Classic Brazilian Album Ou Panis et CircencisUniversal Sound
          This is the definitive Tropicalia concept album, originally released in 1968 and featuring all the key players in the movement: Caetano Veloso, Gilberto...
          • Gilberto Gil – Misere Nobis
          • Caetano Veloso – Corocao Materno
          • Os Mutantes – Panis et Circencis
          • Nara Leao – Lindoneia
          • Gilberto Gil, Caetano Veloso, Gal Costa & Os Mutantes – Parque Industrial
          • Gilbero Gil – Geleia Geral
          • Gal Costa & Caetano Veloso – Baby
          • Caetano Veloso & Gilberto Gil – Tres Caravelas
          • Caetano Veloso – Enquanto Seu Lobo Nao Vem
          • Gal Costa – Mamae Coragem
          • Gilberto Gil – Batmacumba
          • Gilberto Gil, Caetano Veloso, Gal Costa & Os Mutantes – Hino Ao Senhor Do Bonfim Da Bahia
          Delta Swamp RockSounds From The South: At The Crossroads Of Rock, Country And SoulSoul Jazz Records
          Monster double CD pack with a whopping 68-page book accompaniment / Two volumes of seriously heavyweight vinyl gatefold and 8page insert. Featuring...
          • Lynyrd Skynyrd – The seasons
          • Barefoot Jerry – Smokies
          • Joe South – Hush
          • Bobbie Gentry – Papa Won't You Let Me Go To Town
          • Area code 615 – Stone Fox chase
          • Duane And Greg Allman – God Rest His Soul
          • Cher – I Walk On Guilded Splinters
          • Cowboy – Please Be With Me
          • The Allman Brothers – Ain't Wasting No Time
          • Link Wray – Be What You Want to
          • Boz Scaggs – I'll Be Long Gone
          • Lynyrd Skynyrd – Comin' Home
          • Bobbie Gentry – Seasons Come, Seasons Go
          • Leon Russell – Out In The Woods
          • Tony Joe White – Polk Salad Annie
          • Barefoot Jerry – Come To Me Tonight
          • Duane And Greg Allman – Morning Dew
          • Dan Penn – If Love Was Money
          • Linda Ronstadt – I Won't Be Hangin' Round
          • Waylon Jennings – Big D
          • Big Star – Thirteen
          • Bobbie Gentry – Mississippi Delta
          • Travis Wammack – I Forgot To Remember To Forget
          • Johnny Cash – If I Were A Carpenter
          • Billy Vera – I'm Leaving Here Tomorrow, Mama
          • 2×LP Vol.2£18.99
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          • 2×LP Vol.1£18.99
            Out of stock
          • Deluxe 2×CD£12.99
            Out of stock
          Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66Stillness: The Original Classic 1970 Brazil Album Universal Sound/Soul Jazz Records
          Absolutely 100% killer Brazil album. Includes stunning versions of "For What It's Worth", "Chelsea Morning" and Gilberto Gil's "Viramundo"! The bomb. This...
          • Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66 – Stillness
          • Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66 – Righteous Life
          • Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66 – Chelsea Morning
          • Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66 – Cancao Do Nosso Amor
          • Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66 – Viramundo
          • Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66 – Lost In Paradise
          • Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66 – For What It's Worth
          • Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66 – Sometimes In Winter
          • Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66 – Celebration Of The Sunrise
          • Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66 – Stillness (Reprise)
          • New LP £16.99
            Out of stock
          • CD£11.99
            Out of stock
          The Ragga TwinsRagga Twins Step Out !Soul Jazz Records
          The Ragga Twins are the link between UK dancehall reggae, jungle and hip-hop. This is a retrospective of their classic (and now very rare) early tracks...
          • Ragga Twins – Ragga Trip
          • Ragga Twins – Illegal Gunshot
          • Ragga Twins – Spliffhead (Remix)
          • Ragga Twins – Love Talk
          • Ragga Twins – The Homeless Problem
          • Ragga Twins – Rudeboy
          • Ragga Twins – 18" Speaker
          • Ragga Twins – Tan So Back
          • Ragga Twins – Bring Up The Mic Some More
          • Ragga Twins – Juggling
          • Ragga Twins – Spliffhead (Original)
          • Deman Rockers – Hard Drugs
          • Ragga Twins – Shine Eye
          • Ragga Twins – Wipe The Needle
          • Deman Rockers – Iron Lady
          • Ragga Twins – Good Times
          • Ragga Twins – The Truth
          • Ragga Twins – Hooligan 69 Remix
          • Ragga Twins – Paro 69
          • MP3 Release£8.99
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          Studio One KingsSoul Jazz Records
          BACK IN PRINT!!!!!!! 2xLP now with bonus download code! Studio One’s list of singers launched at the famous label reads like a roll...
          • Larry Marshall – I've Got To Make It
          • Horace Andy – Every Tongue Shall Tell
          • Alton Ellis – The Well Run Dry
          • Johnny Osbourne – Water More Than Flour
          • Anthony Rocky Ellis – I'm The Ruler
          • Cornell Campbell – Pretty Looks Isn't All
          • Alexander Henry – Please Be True
          • Burning Spear – Them A Come
          • Joe Higgs – Change Of Plan
          • Devon Russell – Roots Natty
          • Ken Boothe – Be Yourself
          • Freddie McGregor – I Shall Be Released
          • Freddie McKay – Father Will Cut You Off
          • The Ethiopian – Locust
          • George Philip – One One
          • John Holt – I Don't Want To See You Cry
          • Delroy Wilson – Won't You Come Home
          • 2xLP (+ Download Code)£18.99
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          • CD£11.99
            Out of stock
          • MP3 Release£7.99
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          Studio One Classics
          Soul Jazz Records are releasing this latest Studio One compilation which features non-step 100% stone-cold classic Studio One killers! Spanning 40 years...
          • The Skatalites – El Pussycat Ska
          • Carlton & The Shoes – Love Me Forever
          • Sound Dimension – Rockfort Rock
          • Johnny Osbourne – Sing Jah Stylee
          • The Heptones – Pretty Looks Isn't All
          • Slim Smith – Rougher Yet
          • Lone Ranger – Automatic
          • Horace Andy – Fever
          • Prince Jazzbo – School
          • The Wailers – Simmer Down
          • Burning Spear – Rocking Time
          • Alton Ellis – I'm Just A Guy
          • Sugar Minott – Oh Mr Dc
          • Jennifer Lara – Consider Me
          • Don Drummond – Confucious
          • Michigan & Smiley – Rub A Dub Style
          • Sound Dimension – Full Up
          • Dennis Brown – No Man Is An Island
          Rara in HaitiStreet Music of HaitiSoul Jazz Records
          Anarchic carnival street music from Haiti. Traces of New Orleans' Second Line jazz meets Cuban carnival Comparsas and Brazilian afro blocs and the ancient...
          • Rara in Haiti – Rara 1
          • Rara in Haiti – Rara 2
          • Rara in Haiti – Rara 3
          • CD£11.99
            Out of stock
          • MP3 Release£7.99
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          90 Degrees Of ShadeHot Jump-Up Island Sounds From The CaribbeanSoul Jazz Records
          Soul Jazz Records’ new album 90 Degrees of Shade features the music of the Caribbean – Mambo, Calypso, Mento, Merengue, Latin Jazz and much more. The...
          • The Eloise Trio – Come To The Caribbean
          • Cachao – Trombon Criollo
          • Duke Of Iron – Bambouche
          • Lucho Azcarraga – Tamboritos Panamenos
          • Alfredito – Timbales
          • King Scratch – Christmas Time In Nassau
          • Guy De Rosier Orchestra – Panono M'Tombe
          • Noro Morales Orchestra – Mississippi Mambo
          • Peanuts Taylor – Nassau Blues
          • Katherine Dunham Ensemble – Nago
          • Hubert Porter – Rum and Coconut Water
          • The Bay Street Boys – Donkey Wants Water
          • Guy Du Rosier Orchestra – Anatole
          • Sonny Burke Orchestra – West Indies
          • Dioris Valladares – Los Dos Merengues
          • Julio Gutierrez – Theme For Conga
          • Hubert Porter – Mary's Lamb
          • Count Lasha – Perseverance
          • Tito Puente – Swingin' Mambo
          • The Duke Of Iron – Fifty Cents
          • Katherine Dunham Presents The Singing Gods – Maiz
          • Fajardo y sus Estrellas – El Aguardiente
          • The Eloise Trio – Anna Macao
          • Lord Fly – Whai, Whai, Whai
          • Gina Martin – Omo Belli
          • Billo's Caracas Boys – Bombele
          • King Scratch – Liza See Me Hear
          • Cortijo – Con La Punta Del Pie Teresa
          • The Calypso Steel-O-Rama Band – Java
          • Super Ensemble Nemours Jean-Baptiste – Rinmin Ce Folie
          • Lord Lebby – Dr. Kinsey Report
          • Celia Cruz – Yembe Laroco
          VoguingVoguing and the House Ballroom Scene of New York City 1976 - 1996Soul Jazz Records
          Limited edition 3CD box set comes with exclusive bonus JUNIOR VASQUEZ voguing mix CD as well as set of unique collectible postcards by photographer...
          • Inner Life – Moment Of My Life
          • Masters at Work – The Ha Song (Ken/Lou Mix)
          • Ellis D – Just Like A Queen (Share The Throne Mix)
          • Cheryl Lynn – Got To Be Real
          • Loose Joints – Is It All Over My Face
          • Armand Van Helden – The Witch Doktor (Dark Ages Mix)
          • Raze – Break 4 Love (Spanish Fly Mix)
          • First Choice – Let No Man Put Asunder
          • 2 Body's – Body Drill
          • Diana Ross – Love Hangover (12" Mix)
          • George Kranz – Din Daa Daa (Original Mix)
          • Junior Vasquez – X
          • MFSB – Love Is The Message (Tom Moulton Mix)
          • Rageous Projecting Kevin Aviance – Cunty (Party Mix)
          • First Choice – Love Thang
          • Malcolm McLaren – Deep In Vogue (Benjie Realness Mix)
          • Nitro Deluxe – This Brutal House
          • Salsoul Orchestra – Ooh I Love It (Love Break)
          • 1. Inner Life – Moment Of My Life
          • 2. Masters at Work – The Ha Song (Ken/Lou Mix)
          • 3. Ellis D – Just Like A Queen (Share The Throne Mix)
          • View full info and tracklisting