The music of Haiti combines a wide range of influences drawn from the many people who have settled on this Caribbean island. It reflects French, African rhythms, Spanish elements and others who have inhabited the island of Hispaniola and minor native Taino influences. Styles of music unique to the nation of Haiti include music derived from Vodou ceremonial traditions, rara parading music, twoubadou ballads, mini-jazz rock bands, rasin movement, hip hop kreyòl, the wildly popular compas, and méringue as its basic rhythm. Haiti hadn't had a recorded music until 1937 when Jazz Guignard was recorded non-commercially. One of the most popular Haitian artists is Wyclef Jean. His music is somewhat hip-hop mixed with world music. Haitian music is influenced mostly by European colonial ties and African migration (through slavery). In the case of European colonization, musical influence has derived primarily from the French.
One of Haiti's musical traditions is known to outsiders simply as compas. But in the former non-standardized Haitian Creole, Haitians identify it variously as compa, conpa, and konpa-dirék. Regardless of its various spellings, compas refers to a complex, ever-changing music genre that fuses African rhythms, European ballroom dancing, and Haitian bourgeois aesthetics. The word may have derived from the Spanish compás, which relates to the musical rhythm of the "beat" or "pulse." One of the most distinctive features of Haitian compas music is the steady, pulsing drum beat, which makes it easy to dance to.
Haïti Chérie is a traditional patriotic and most recognizable song of Haiti that was written and composed by Dr. Othello Bayard de Cayes and was initially called Souvenir d'Haiti. It represents the pride Haitian people feel for their country and culture. Within the Haitian community, at home and abroad, it is widely considered as a second national anthem to La Dessalinienne and the song has recorded several different versions.
THE MOST POPULAR HAITIAN TYPE OF MUSIC IS ''COMPAS''
Compas, short for compas direct, is the modern méringue (mereng in creole) that was popularized in the mid-1950s by the sax and guitar player Nemours Jean-Baptiste. His méringue soon became popular throughout the Antilles, especially in Martinique and Guadeloupe. Webert Sicot and Nemours Jean-Baptiste became the two leaders in the group. Sicot then left and formed a new group and an intense rivalry developed, though they remained good friends. To differentiate himself from Nemours, Sicot called his modern méringue, cadence rampa.
In Creole, it is spelled as konpa dirèk or simply konpa. It is commonly spelled as it is pronounced as kompa.
A FLYER OF THE HAITIAN COMPAS FESTIVAL
We have also Haitian Hip Hop, Rap Kreyol in Creole that is quite popular in Haiti. The local homegrown Haitian hip hop movement is rising in popularity in Haiti and other Haitian communities. It is becoming more and more popular with Haitian youth, often communicating social and political topics as well as materialism. Kompa as well as other popular local music beats are used frequently with urban sounds. Recent years have seen a rise in popularity for Haitian Hip-Hop artists such as Barikad Crew and Jimmy O. Other Haitian hip hop artists have yet to evolve.
ONE OF THE MOST FAMOUS HAITIAN HIP HOP BAND? ''BARIKAD CREW''
Apart from ''COMPAS'' and HAITIAN HIP HOP'' there are other types of music in Haiti but they are less listenned than those two main one. We have for example Folk music, Zouk and also Spiritual Music.
Here is a Compas song by Carimi And Mikaben, '' Baby i missed you''
Here is a song from the band Barikad Crew