Bele Mama – Cameroon, West Africa

This is a great ice-breaker of a song! The perfect opener. It gets your group singing in harmony in a matter of minutes. Possible meaning is “Mama come out and play!” When I first learned this, I learned that it was from the Torres Straight Islands and that it meant “Beautiful Earth.” The more research I do, the more I find that it’s actually from West Africa and has traveled and traveled far and wide. I learned it off of a “WombSong” CD. Enjoy!

This song is in the public domain
Arrangement by Heather Houston
www.heatherhoustonmusic.com

Lyrics:

Bele mama, bele mama ee ay
Bele mama, bele mama ee ay
Bele mama, bele mama, bele mama, bele mama,
Bele mama, bele mama ee eh

Chant to Nana by Heather Houston

In the Yoruba traditions, Nana is the Great Grandmother of all the Orishas, the Grandmother of our sacred waters, and the Mother of the Universe. This wise and revered Orisha embodies the spirit of the earth, the moon, the rain, mud, swamps and fresh spring waters. She is the energy of transformative healing powers. She watches over the women and is the protector of everything female. It is said that she has very little patience for men and surrounds herself mainly with priestesses. Women find comfort in her knowledge and strength. They flock to her for guidance and spiritual healing.

For many years I chanted chants to Nana with my teacher Alba Lirio. One day when I was driving through the hills of Marin, tending to my broken heart, an original melody flowed through me with lyrics to Nana. I clearly needed the healing energy she brings, and have been forever grateful for the gift of this chant. The women in my circles adore it as well.

Lyrics:

Part 1: (the round)
Eh na na Eh na na Eh na na, Eh na na Eh na na Eh

Part 2: (the hight part)
Eh di na na eh wa
Eh wa eh wa
Eh wa eh wa eh

Part 3: (the low part)
Eh di na na eh wa
Eh wa eh wa
Eh wa eh wa

You Are So Loved by Heather Houston

I adore the energy of love and care that is captured in this painting by Katie m. Berggren. This song originally flowed through as a lullaby for parents and babies, but it has become a favorite within my circles of singers. We love to put women in the middle and sing to them when they are in need of some TLC.

My intent with this lullaby is for all humans to tap into the feeling of being deeply loved; deeply loved by our own selves, by our friends, by our communities and circles of friends, and then spreading that energy of love to our wider circles and sending it out to the planet for anyone in need of some nurturing.

© Heather Houston
All rights reserved

Lyrics:

You are so loved