Basotho, accordion music, koriana, evolution,, status, Lesotho, famo, focho, shebeen


The article describes the origins, evolution and status of Sotho1 koriana accordion music from the 1920s through the 1960s and 70s when it was considered shebeen music, and from1980 to 2005, when there was a change of attitude towards it and only sporadic production. Two concerns are: the status of koriana music, and, its appreciation by Sotho people themselves. Data was collected through observations, interviews with artists and listeners, and from cassettes, radio and TV programmes. Aspects of the music are described and related to non-musical events of the period.

Author Biography

Lehlohonolo Phafoli, Dr, University of Free State, South Africa

Lehlohonolo Phafoli, PhD Oral Literature, University of Free State, is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of African Languages and Literature at the National University of Lesotho. He teaches South Sotho Modern Literature and Oral Literature. He holds a B.A.Ed with majors in African Languages and Literature and English (National University of Lesotho), B.A. Hons, M.A. in Sociolinguistics, South Sotho Modern and Oral Literature (University of the Witwatersrand). He has been a high school teacher for ten years and later taught for five years at the National Teacher Training College.


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How to Cite

Phafoli, Lehlohonolo. 2018. “THE EVOLUTION OF SOTHO ACCORDION MUSIC IN LESOTHO: 1980–2005”. African Music : Journal of the International Library of African Music 10 (4):127-43.