I was born in the county of Demerara in the very tropical country of Guyana in the middle of a rainstorm. My Six Seasons begins naturally, with a celebration of rainy seasons; Way Down Demerara describes how two rainy seasons contribute to an abundance of tropical life; the song Rainy Season Come in Fast, teases out the challenges of living on Guyana’s watery coastal plain, a Dutch-style polder full of dams and canals sluices (called kokas) that keep dry the five-feet-below-sea-level coast. We then move to the seasons in Canada, to Spring with Skylark and the Waters of March; and celebrate summer, with Wild Mountain Thyme, learned during my wanderings in Europe.
Summer warmth in Canada brings back memories of the dry seasons; when in Guyana and the Caribbean, people explored the lush and, until recently, untrammeled forests of Guyana’s interior; and times when people played after the sugar cane was harvested and the estates had ceased “grinding”. Three old Guyana songs fill this section. Timba Man describes how in the old days, men cut down trees and manually hauled the logs to a collection point on the sea, (despite Caymen and jumbee/ghosts) where they were taken via “sea punt” to sawmills in Demerara.
Sityra Gyal and Janey Girl are all about play. In Sityra Gyal a young lady is gently scolded for playing too much, lifting up her petticoat and “whining (dancing suggestively) like a Buxton bull”. In Janie Girl a young man begs his beloved to accompany him to the “back dam” where under fruit trees they might while away their time.
The brilliant sunsets and bright moons of September and October mark a cooler time of year in Guyana and of course the onset of Fall in Canada. Guyanese Cecile E. Bergan Nobrega richly describes such evenings in the song Twilight; and in the Song to the Moon, the young water nymph begs the “little moon” to shine on her beloved, to make him dream of her.
The perfect hymn to winter has always been for me Gorden Lightfoot's Song for Winter’s Night; and in tribute to Christmas traditions further South, I have added the Argentinian Noche Anunciada and, of course, the traditional, Mary’s Boychild.
The album closes with my ultimate would-be-snowbird/January-in-Canada-dreamsong,Cuando Calienta El Sol.
A note on the Guyanese songs. Most Guyanese children learn to sing Guyana's songs at top speed, the way the little choir sings Way Down Demerara at the beginning of the Album. Demerara, Timba Man and Twilight have great lyrics and tell quite a story, so I have slowed them down to bring out the beauty of the words. You will find the full texts of the Guyanese songs on the next page of this website.
Fauzya Moore is a Canadian-Guyanese who lives in Ottawa Canada. She has sung most of her life, most recently with the Maria Knapik Ensemble, and with the Capital Vox Singers. This is her first album.
Comments: A wonderful cd of some of the most exquisite music I've heard. Fauzya Mooresings with a heartfelt passion and as you listen the songs inspire relaxation and joy as she goes through her six seasons. Beautifully arranged this cd will not leave you disappointed - James Shanks.