Mo-Afrika, Tsoha

(African, Arise!)


Catalogue No
JPM 048
Dual notation (staff & tonic solfa), Staff notation
choir SATB
Joshua Pulumo Mohapeloa Critical Edition

There are several songs in Mohapeloa’s songbooks Meloli II, even more in Meloli III, songs that exhort, Africans, or in this case, the ‘African’ to see the changes happening around them. The songs remind us that World War II broke out soon after the book was published, a war in which many Basotho were killed, most of them in non-combatant roles on foreign soil. It was, however, to be many years (1966) before Lesotho attained the independence that Mohapeloa urges his fellow Basotho to strive for in this song. ‘Mo-Afrika, Tsoha’ speaks to an inertia, or perhaps inner political turmoil of his country as it progressed towards that independence. Mohapeloa uses compound triple time to capture the sense of being lulled to sleep, and the hammering rhythm of Alto and Bass (accents on every note, at first) to express the urgent need to wake up.