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

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        • Linda Martell – Color Him Father
        • Dolly Parton – The Bargain Store
        • Diana Trask – Don't Let It Get Away
        • Wanda Jackson – My Baby Walked Right Out On Me
        • Loretta Lynn and Conway Twitty – Working Girl
        • Cher – Chastity's Song
        • Dolly Parton – Jolene
        • Tammy Wynette – Baby Come Home
        • Vikki Carr – Living On A Prayer, a Hope and a Hand Me Down
        • Jody Miller – Don't Throw Your Love To The Wind
        • Jeannie C. Riley – The Rib
        • Bobbie Gentry – Okolona River Bottom Band
        • Joan Harris – Fact of Life
        • Linda Ronstadt – Baby You've Been On My Mind
        • Jody Miller – Natural Woman
        • Jean Shepard – I'm Alone
        • Barbara Mandrell – If Loving You Is Wrong
        • Lynn Anderson – Stay There Til I Get There
        • Kitty Wells – Forever Young
        • Jan Howard – Your Ole Handy Man
        • Patsy Cline – Come On In
        • Barbara Mandrell – I Never Said I Love You
        • Lynn Anderson – If I Can't Be Your Woman
        TV Sound and ImageBritish Television, Film and Library Composers 1956-80Soul Jazz Records
        The 36 track 2CD album comes with 50-page book featuring text, biographies and photography. It also comes in a limited run two volume double-vinyl super-loud...
        • Barry Stoller – Condition Red
        • Pentangle – Light Flight
        • Geoff Love – Three Days Of The Condor
        • The Tony Hatch Sound – Man Alive
        • Richard Denton and Martin Cook – Tomorrow's World
        • Brian Fahey – At The Sign Of The Swinging Cymbal
        • Bullet – The Contract Man
        • Syd Dale – Man Friday
        • The Laurie Johnson Orchestra – Echo Four Two
        • Keith Papworth – Hard Hitter
        • John Barry – The Persuaders
        • Roy Budd – Getting Nowhere In A Hurry
        • The Simon Park Orchestra – Dawn to Dusk
        • The Marylebone Orchestra – Fiesta Numero Uno
        • Birds 'n' Brass – Sort of Soul
        • Johnny Gregory and his Orchestra – The Avengers
        • Johnny Harris – Fragment of Fear
        • Roy Budd – Get Carter
        • Neil Richardson – Guide Path
        • Brian Bennett – Canvas
        • Wil Malone – Death Line
        • Syd Dale – Huckleberry Fine
        • The Harry Roche Constellation – Spiral
        • The Ivor and Basil Kirchin Band – Jungle Fire Dance
        • The Laurie Johnson Orchestra – The New Avengers Theme
        • James Clarke – Folk Song
        • The Reg Tilsley Orchestra – Strike Rich
        • The Barry Gray Orchestra – Joe 90
        • Keith Mansfield – Soul Thing
        • CCS – Whole Lotta Love
        • Syd Dale – Artful Dodger
        • John Gregory – Jaguar
        • Nick Ingman – Down Home
        • Barbara Moore – Steam Heat
        • Alan Parker – Angels
        • Alan Moorhouse – Face Up
        • Deluxe 2×CD£12.00
          Out of stock
        • 2×LP Vol.1£23.00
          Out of stock
        • 2×LP Vol.2£23.00
          In stockAdd to Bag
        • MP3 Release£8.99
          In stockAdd to Bag
        Invasion Of The Mysteron Killer Sounds in 3-DCompiled by Kevin Martin (The Bug) and Stuart Baker (Soul Jazz Records)Soul Jazz Records
        Kevin Martin (aka The Bug) and Stuart Baker (Soul Jazz Records) have collaborated on a unique project bringing together new, exclusive and in-demand cutting-edge...
        • Steely & Clevie – Street Sweeper
        • Lenky & Sly – Now Thing
        • Roots Manuva – Doogoo Dub
        • Dave Kelly – The Return
        • Harvel 'Gadaffi' Hart – Summer Bounce
        • Federation Sound – Flatlands (Brooklyn Dub Mix)
        • Steven 'Lenky' Marsden – Diwali
        • Matt Shadetek – Yoga Rhythm
        • Stereotyp ft. Alleycat – Modern Times
        • Da Grynch and Tippa Irie – Agony
        • Fresh Ear Productions – Hummer
        • Diplo – Diplo Rhythm
        • Harmonic 313 – Bazooka Riddim
        • Marlon Williams – Pitbull
        • Redlight – MDMA
        • The Bug – Aktion
        • Fat Eyes – Clothes Pin
        • Steven Ventura – Throw Your Hands Up
        • Sly Dunbar and Christopher Birch – Corners Boy
        • David Jahson – King of Kings
        • Fat Eyes – Steel Plate
        • South Rakkas Crew – Red Alert
        • Parara and McCoy – Them Can't Hold Yuh Girl
        • King Tubby – Fat Thing Version
        • World Beat – Goldmine
        • Andre 'Suku' Gray – Sign
        • Henfield and Shadowman – Babatunde
        • Firehouse Crew – No False Hair
        • Computer Paul – World Talk
        • Fat Eyes – Overdose
        • Prince Jazzbo – Great Dub
        • Kickin' Productions – What You Gonna Do
        • Pliers – I'm Your Man Dub
        • Wiz Kidz Team – In My Heart Version
        • Jammys Jam2 James – Peenie Peenie
        • Deluxe 2×CD£12.00
          In stockAdd to Bag
        • 2×LP Vol.1£18.99
          Out of stock
        • 2×LP Vol.2£18.99
          Out of stock
        • MP3 Release£8.99
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        Country Soul SistersWomen In Country Music 1952 - 78Soul Jazz Records
        Country Soul Sisters charts the rise of female singers in country music from 1952 to 1978.As well as country legends Dolly Parton, Loretta Lynn, Tanya...
        • Dolly Parton – Don't Let It Trouble Your Mind
        • Lynn Anderson – Fancy
        • Jeannie C. Riley – I've Done A Lot Of Living Since Then
        • Bobbie Gentry – Reunion
        • Tammy Wynette – Tonight My Baby's Coming Home
        • Jean Shepard – A Satisfied Mind
        • Nancy Sinatra – Get While The Gettin's Good
        • Tanya Tucker – California Cotton Fields
        • Sammi Smith – Saunders Ferry Lane
        • Connie Smith – If It Ain't Love
        • Jean Shepard – Two Whoops And A Holler
        • Billie Jo Spears – Mr. Walker, It's All Over
        • Patsy Cline – Ain't No Wheels On This Ship
        • Barbara Fairchild – Color My World
        • Loretta Lynn and Conway Twitty – You're The Reason Our Kids Are Ugly
        • Jeannie C. Riley – Harper Valley PTA
        • Jody Miller – A Woman Left Lonely
        • Kitty Wells – Delta Dawn
        • Diana Trask – Show Me
        • Norma Jean – He's All I've Got
        • Bobbie Gentry – Ode To Billie Joe
        • Bonnie Guitar – Tender Words
        • Barbara Mandrell – Husband Stealer
        • Diana Trask – I'll Never Do You Wrong
        • Kitty Wells – It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels
        • 1. Dolly Parton – Don't Let It Trouble Your Mind
        • 2. Lynn Anderson – Fancy
        • 3. Jeannie C. Riley – I've Done A Lot Of Living Since Then
        • View full info and tracklisting
        Harmony, Melody & StyleLovers Rock In The UK 1975-1992Soul Jazz Records
        A definitive 2-CD/Two Vol 2xLP compilation album of Lovers Rock. Double-CD (and two separate volumes of 2xLP) pack includes stunning 34-page booklet...
        • La Famille – All Night Long
        • Louisa Marks – Caught You In A Lie
        • Sandra Reid – Don't Tell Me Tell Her
        • Carroll Thompson – Sing Me A Love Song
        • Winston Curtis – Be Thankful For What You've Got
        • Janet Kay – Feel No Way
        • Paulette Tajah – Stop, Look, Listen
        • Eva Sharp – Upside Down
        • Valerie Harrison – You're No Good
        • Anthony Brightly – I Love You
        • Charmaine Burnett – Make It With You
        • Sister C.C. – Stop Hurting Me
        • Kofi – Black Pride
        • Full Wood – Stop And Think It Over
        • Christine White – Caught By Love
        • Jean Adebambo – Paradise
        • Trevor Hartley – It Must Be Love
        • Blood Sisters – My Love Don't Come Easy
        • Yvonne Archer – Ain't Nobody
        • Louisa Marks – Even Though You're Gone
        • The Cool Notes – People Make The World Go Round
        • Legato – I Cares
        • Candy McKenzie – Thinking of You
        • Wendy Walker – We've Got One
        • The Sadonians – Goodbye My Love
        • 2×LP Vol.2£23.00
          Out of stock
        • Deluxe 2×CD£12.00
          Out of stock
        • 2×LP Vol.1£23.00
          Out of stock
        • MP3 Release£8.99
          In stockAdd to Bag