Ukulele & Languages

Different countries,
Different cultures
one common language... the ukulele.

Ukulele and creole languages

27 2009

Today I’ll be looking into creole ukulele, with songs in English- and French-based creoles. Creoles are languages born out of a mixture of several languages and which have become stable over time.

Now, before Al from Uke Hunt starts hating me for not featuring a very nice video he pointed out to me ages ago,  I’ll make sure I mention it first in this post. The Creole language is Manglish, a creole derived from English, Malay, Hokkien (Chinese language spoken in the southern Fujian Province) , Mandarin, Cantonese and Tamil. (source : Wikipedia).

The song by Malaysian singer Zee Avi, is called Kantoi, and one of the good thing about having waited so long for posting it is that Al has now done the chords for it. Lyrics can be followed on the video.

Next English-based creole featured is Bislama, a creole borrowing heavily from English but also a bit from French and from various languages of Vanuatu. The song is performed by the Fasfowod stringband.

The next song has a rather confused history, with lyrics supposedly based on Louisiana Creole French. The song originally consists of words shouted by Mardi Gras Indians of 2 rival tribes during a parade , which James Sugarboy Crawford set to music. This is a cover of James Crawford’s song Jock-A-Mo which has later been called Iko Iko by The Dixie Cups. Tony has put a lot of additional information on the song on the info section of his cover on YouTube.

Jippy Seul Tout is playing some French creole music at a festival.

Next video is a medley of 3 songs, the first one in French, the second and third from Tahiti and New-Caledonia.

To end this post, a French-creole lullaby by Yan Yalego.

Looking for ukulele songs from a specific country? Try entering the name of the country in the search field at the top right of this page.

To see all the posts for a specific country, click on the appropriate flag on the sidebar (flags are sorted in alphabetical order).


  1. Al on the 27th of September 2009 @ 19:30

    About time too ;)

    That Jippy Seul Tout video is a great find.

  2. Armelle Europe on the 27th of September 2009 @ 22:44

    Al : Glad you enjoyed Jippy Seul Tout :)

  3. Bushman World Ukulele Video Contest 2009: Friday Links | Ukulele Hunt on the 2nd of October 2009 @ 19:02

    […] Armelle comes up trumps with some great creole songs on ukulele. […]

Leave a comment

Ukulele World Tour

Take a ukulele trip around the world and discover ukulele songs in many languages!
Latest posts :

World Tour Index


Monthly Archives