Contemporary Twist to Gullah Sounds

Ranky Tanky

Get down with this Gullah septet, celebrating the timeless sounds of the Southeastern Sea Island region with contemporary arrangements. Ranky Tanky is shaking up a Lowcountry tradition by reviving and reinterpreting the Gullah music of the Carolina Sea Islands. Members are Calvin Baxter, Quentin Baxter, Kevin Hamilton, Quiana Parler, Clay Ross and Charlton Singleton.

Gullah comes from West African language and means ‘a people blessed by God.’  Ranky Tanky translates loosely as ‘Work It’ or ‘Get Funky!’ In this spirit the Charleston, SC-based group, Ranky Tanky, performs timeless music of Gullah culture born in the southeastern Sea Island region of the United States. From playful game songs to ecstatic shouts, from heartbreaking spirituals to delicate lullabies, Gullah’s musical roots are fertile ground from which these contemporary artists are grateful to have grown.
(Photograph by Reese Moore)