Obe (Obe)

Catalogue no:


Newell High [School] Choir, New Brighton, cond. Henry Tyaliti. SABC LP no. not given, date 1980, digitized 2003 on SABC CDT2219, Trk. 8. Another folksong adaptation, this SATB song published in 1939 is meant to frighten naughty children, the mythical one-eyed ‘Obe’ being for Basotho somewhat like ‘Bogey’ is for the British. It offers an example of one of Mohapeloa’s dual text songs: the Bass ‘riffs’ with athletic leaps while the upper voices carry the narrative.

Joo ... Joo ... who can help me? Here’s a creature with big ears. Take a kierie [stick] and kill it. (JPM) Mother, mother, please! Wake up and help me, please! Father, hey! Wake up, save me please! The nostrils are caves; they are pitch black! Hey! Father, wake up! I beg you! The beast has one eye on its forehead! Horrors! I see it! Whom shall I call? Father, the thing is here! Save me, it takes me! The beast with big ears! Please wake up, and help me, here is this horrible thing! The ears are wide and hanging! Alas! You only wake up now, father? I am leaving now, so sleep! Take a spear and a rhinoceros horn knobkierie, go and kill it! Bring a spear and a rhinoceros stick, so I can go and kill it! It’s like a pig with only one eye! It’s like a cow! What is it? Oh no! Save me! Help! (MM-S)