Voices Of Haiti
Fantome Phonographique present a reissue of Maya Deren's Voices Of Haiti, originally released as a 10" record in 1954. Maya Deren (1917-1961) was a Russian-American filmmaker and one of the most important voices in avant-garde cinema of the mid-20th century. She was a muse and inspiration to such up-and-coming avant-garde filmmakers as Curtis Harrington, Stan Brakhage, and Kenneth Anger, who emulated her independent, entrepreneurial spirit. Throughout the 1940s and '50s, Deren attacked Hollywood for its artistic, political and economic monopoly over American cinema. She stated, "I make my pictures for what Hollywood spends on lipstick." When Maya Deren decided, between the end of the '40s and the beginning of the '50s, to make an ethnographic film in Haiti, she was criticized for abandoning the avant-garde film world where she had made her place, but she was ready to expand to a new level as an artist. Deren not only filmed, recorded, and photographed many hours of voodoo ritual, but also participated in the ceremonies. It was in working on this film that Deren recorded the Haitian musicians found on these sides originally released in the very early days of Elektra records. Voices Of Haiti, a beautiful artifact of percussion and chant heavy ritual music, is one of the earliest and best Western ethnographic documents of voodoo culture in Haiti. It is unmissable both for its historical value and for the beauty and spiritual power of the music it contains. Original cover art for the album was created by the Japanese composer and performer Teiji Ito, husband of Maya Deren. Remastered; repressed here as a 12". Edition of 500.