Shanto is a form of Guyanese music, related to both calypso and mento.[1] It became a major part of early popular music through its use in Guyanese vaudeville shows; songs are topical and light-hearted, often accompanied by a guitar.[2]

The word "shanto" is a conflation of "shanty" - the term used in Guyana for work songs - and "calypso". The style was developed and named in the 1920s by musician Bill Rogers (Augustus Hinds, 1906–1984), who described it as "an improvisation of words and music with an Afro-West Indian beat, with satirical comments on people, events and things...". In the 1930s, the "bargee" (or "bhajee") beat became synonymous with shanto. Rogers was the most versatile and popular practitioner of the shanto style; other popular figures included Joe Coggins, Zeda Martindale, and Ralph FitzScott.[3] Bill Rogers' son, Roger Hinds, has continued to perform and record shanto music as "Young Bill Rogers".[4]

References and notes [ edit ]

  1. ^ "The African Folk Music Tradition from Guyana: A Discourse and Performance"(PDF). Brown Bag Colloquium Series 2003-2004. Archived from the original(PDF) on August 28, 2006. Retrieved October 1, 2006.
  2. ^ Seals, Ray. "The Making of Popular Guyanese Music". Retrieved October 1, 2006.
  3. ^ David Horn and John Shepherd (eds.), Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Popular Music of the World, Volume 9: Caribbean and Latin America, Bloomsbury Publishing, 2014, pp.768-769
  4. ^ Ruth Osman, "The ride of Young Bill Rogers", Caribbean Beat #94, November 2008. Retrieved 19 April 2019

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