Ga: Dances


Gome is one of the oldest musical types performed by the coastal Ga of Ghana, which was introduced by Accra fishermen from the Fernando Po Islands in the early eighteenth century. Originally, Gome was performed exclusively by fishermen after their expeditions to celebrate their catch. Other occupational groups, especially artisans, also eventually adopted this music and dance as a form of entertainment. Presently, Gome is performed by all categories of people– young and old, male and female, on all social occasions


Kpanlongo is the most recent of all Ga recreational musical types, an offshoot of Gome, Oge, Kolomashie, and Konkoma. Referred to as “the dance of the youth,” Kpanlongo started during the wake of Ghana’s Independence as a musical type for entertainment in Accra. Kpanlongo is presently performed at life-cycle events, festivals, and political rallies.

  • Instruments
  • Slit Bell – Nono
  • Double Bell – Nononta
  • Pod Bell – Dodompo
  • Lead Drum – Atswereshi
  • Support Drums – Atswereshi x 2
  • Frame Drums – Tamlali x 1 or 2
  • Bass Drum – Gome

The Kpanlogo dance was invented by Otoo Lincoln. He was told an Ansee folk story by his Grandfather. Kpanlogo, Mma Mma and Algodzan were the names of three triplets girls. Their father was the cheif and said, how ever could guess their names could marry them. So a man went to their home pretending to be a mad man asking for water, he met the girls and learnt their names as they called to each other. To remember them he kept singing to himself ‘Kp. Mma. Al.’ And of course he married the girls. Otoo heard the story in 1956 when he was 15. He used to tell it dancing and singing to his brothers and sisters, a friend used to drum along as they liked the music and dance and we created our own version of highlife around 1962. The feeling of the music originated from music played by his father from Oge , Liberian music a sort of slow kpanlogo. I mixed this Oge with high life and rock and roll to produce the feeling in Kpanlogo.

In 1962 the Arts Council, banned its playing as one of the beats made the body move in an indecent way. They called Otoo in for a meeting. Otoo said that it ………………… By 1965 Kpanlogo had become so popular that 50+ groups performed it to the head of state Nkrumah.

Kpanlogo was seen as a dance from the youth, arising from the streets of Accra soon after Ghana’s independence, and symbolised the youth and independence of a young nation and so was taken on and played at funerals, state occasions and became an anthem for the ruling party at the time. Up to now its popularity remains hi. There are countless Kpanlogo performing groups, playing for pleasure and at all social and state occasion.


Kpatsa is the principal traditional entertainment music and dance of the Dangme of Ghana, in West Africa. The dance itself involves sideways and forward shuffling movements, making use of short, brisk steps with the body slightly bent. The dance steps move the dancer either diagonally or backwards. With arms bent in front of the body, the right leg steps in concert with the movement of the right arm while the left leg steps at the same time as the left arm; while one foot remains flat on the ground, the heel of the other foot is lifted off the ground.

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