Chabana Sa Khomo
Chabana Sa Khomo was first published in 1935 and Mohapeloa told anthropologist David Coplan in an interview in 1978 that he had based it on two folksongs, one used in the first and one in the second half of the song. The call-and-response first half recalls music ‘as it is sung in the villages … in original Sotho style’, Mohapeloa says, a song ‘sung when the skin is scraped to make a karos [blanket]’, and he creates this antiphony by dividing the choir into two groups of Soprano-Tenor-Bass as can be seen in the example on the right. Mohapeloa did not give any clues about the song that the second half is based on, but it could be ‘Mong’a kobo’ (Owner of the hide). This was recorded by Hugh Tracey in Lesotho in 1951/52 and is in the sound archive of the International Library of African Music (ILAM) in Makanda (Grahamstown), South Africa. As with some of Mohapeloa’s other pieces, Chabana Sa Khomo can be sung by mixed choir or male-voice choir. The score sample shows the version of the score in dual notation for mixed choir and it is also available just in staff notation. The audio file of a male-voice choir given below was originally recorded in Johannesburg in late 1936 or early 1937 and was reissued on CD in 2014 by ACE.