(b Lagos). Nigerian reggae musician. After a series of television appearances in Nigeria in the early 1980s he began a solo career in 1987. Jah Stix was his first band and in 1988 his album Prisoner of Conscience made an international impact. Influences on Majek include musicians such as Bob Marley, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti and Jimi Hendrix; his late musical style (for example as shown in Rainmaker) draws on several sources, including rock, juju, afrobeat and Ghanaian kpanlogo. His song texts often draw on political, moral and religious themes. Spirit of Love (Interscope, 1992), The Best of Majek Fashek (Flame Tree, 1994) and I & I Experience (CBS, 1989) are among his well-known recordings.
Term used in Turkish art music denoting a cycle of pieces. Also a modern term for Turkish night-club music. A related term is fasl (Arabic), also denoting cyclical form.
A traditional method of solmization long popular in England and North America, and later known as ‘English’, ‘Lancashire’ or ‘four-note’ sol-fa. In effect an abbreviated form of the ancient gamut (seeSolmization), this basically tetrachordal system gave to the rising major scale the note names fa, sol, la, fa, sol, la, mi, fa. The mutations of this sequence can be traced readily through the gamut itself, as shown in Table 1. The term is also used for the American shape-note system based on four syllables (seeShape-note hymnody).
The popular English instruction books of the 17th century – Charles Butler’s The Principles of Musik (1636), John Playford’s Introduction to the Skill of Musick (1655) and Christopher Simpson’s A Compendium of Practical Musick (1667) – all employed the fasola system. The appearance of those texts at that time has led to a belief that fasola first appeared in England during the 17th century, but the method is of greater antiquity than such a conclusion suggests. It was employed to explain the text of Thomas Campion’s New Way of making Fowre Parts in Counter-point (?1613–14); further, Morley’s Plaine and Easie Introduction to Practicall Musicke (1597) states that although contemporary practice required a beginner to learn the whole gamut, once that feat had been achieved, the syllables ut and re were employed only in the lowest octave of each voice. This is confirmed by musical examples in the book which use only the four syllables of fasola.
Still earlier, the same system was employed in Day’s edition of the Whole Booke of Psalmes (1570), in which sol-fa initials were printed alongside the notes of tunes. Ex.1 shows a version of the tune of Psalm cxxi from Day’s book, transcribed into modern notation but retaining the original sol-fa note names. Its publication in 1570 demonstrates that fasola, with its characteristic use of mi on the seventh degree, was well established in England at least by the second half of the 16th century. Moreover, the existence of the medieval tag, ‘Mi contra fa: diabolus in musica’, which unambiguously describes the tritone from B to F and not the alternative interval from E to F, suggests that the fasola system may have been in everyday use well before the 16th century.
During the 18th century the use of fasola became yet more widespread at the hands of itinerant teachers of psalmody who taught choristers to sing from notes. The system owed much of its popularity then to the ease with which the syllables could be related to the wider range of keys coming into use. The secret lay in placing the syllable mi, which occurs only once in the octave, on the seventh degree of the major scale. To assist the beginner to do this, psalmody teachers invented doggerel rules such as the following:
Learn this, and learn it well by rote, That Mi is aye the last sharped note.
The importance of mi – the ‘master note’ – in this connection led to the use of the phrase ‘Mi is in E’, or ‘Mi is in C’, instead of ‘key of F’ or ‘key of D’ etc, among psalmodists. The minor scale was taught as la, mi, fa, sol, la, fa, sol, la, any chromatic alteration of the sixth or seventh degree being treated as fa or sol. Simple modulation called for a special rule: ‘When fa by sharps is raised a semitone, call it mi; when mi is made a semitone lower by flats, call it fa’.
In some parts of England this indigenous system survived the introduction of other, more sophisticated methods during the 19th century. As late as 1879, James Greenwood published a new account of it in The Sol-fa System, as Used in Lancashire and Yorkshire, reprinted in 1907.