May 20, 2014

RhoDeo 1420 Roots

Hello,  Washington filed an unprecedented lawsuit against Beijing for corporate spying. The US Department of Justice accused members of China’s military, the People’s Liberation Army, of stealing sensitive information from major energy and metal companies, including Alcoa, the aluminium producer, and Westinghouse, which makes nuclear reactors. Apparently the NSA lacks sufficient access to Chinese telecom, anyway it's typical of a bully to cry wolf if someone stings him.. And now the UK drug puppies refuse to be assimilated by that US drug dog, what is this world coming to, it must be Obama's fault...

it's more about Cameroun's most famous musical son today, the man with the Oh, la la  and saxofoon, the first man who put Africa in the hit and dance parade ........N'joy

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The ethnicities of Cameroon include an estimated 250 distinct ethnic groups in five regional-cultural divisions. An estimated 38% of the population are Western highlanders–Semi-Bantu or grassfielders including the Bamileke, Bamum, and many smaller Tikar groups in the northwest. 12% are coastal tropical forest peoples, including the Bassa, Duala, and many smaller groups in the southwest. The southern tropical forest peoples (18%) include the Beti-Pahuin and their sub-groups the Bulu and Fang, the Maka and Njem, as well as, the Baka pygmies. In the semi-arid northern regions (the Sahel) and central highlands the Fulani (French: Peul or Peuhl; Fula: Fulɓe) form an estimated 14% of Cameroonians, while the Kirdi (unbelievers) are a general category, comprising 18% of the population, of various mainly Chadic and Adamawa speakers.

The Beti, or Ewondo, live in the area around Yaoundé and south into Equatorial Guinea. They are best known for bikutsi music, which has been popularized and become a rival for the more urban and accessible makossa of Douala. The name can be loosely translated as beating the ground continuously. Bikutsi, characterized by an intense 6/8 rhythm, is played at Beti gatherings including parties, funerals, and weddings. The middle of the 20th century saw the popularization of a native folk music called bikutsi. Bikutsi is based on a war rhythm played with various rattles and drums and xylophone. Sung by women, bikutsi featured sexually explicit lyrics and songs about everyday problems.

Later in the 1960s, modern makossa developed and became the most popular genre in Cameroon. Makossa is a type of funky dance music, best known outside Africa for Manu Dibango, whose 1972 single "Soul Makossa" was an international hit. Outside of Africa, Dibango and makossa were only briefly popular, but the genre has produced several pan-African superstars through the 70s, 80s and 90s. Following Dibango, a wave of musicians electrified makossa in an attempt at making it more accessible outside of Cameroon. The following decade, however, saw Les Tetes Brulées surpass previous artists in international popularity though their reaction at home was mixed. Many listeners did not like their mellow, almost easy listening-styled bikutsi. Cameroonian audiences preferred more roots-based performers like Jimmy Mvondo Mvelé and Uta Bella, both from Yaoundé.

Jean-Marie Ahanda became the most influential bikutsi performer of the late 80s, and he revolutionized the genre in 1987 after forming Les Têtes Brulées, whose success changed the Cameroonian music industry. The band played an extremely popular form of bikutsi that allowed for greater depth and diversity. Guitarist Zanzibar added foam rubber to the bridge of his guitar, which made the instrument sound more like a balafon than before, and was more aggressive and innovative than previous musicians. In the 1990s, both makossa and bikutsi declined in popularity as a new wave of genres entered mainstream audiences. These included Congolese-influenced new rumba and makossa-soukous, as well as more native forms like bantowbol, northern Cameroonian nganja (which had gained some popularity in the United Kingdom in the mid-80s), and an urban street music called bend-skin.

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Manu Dibango (N'Djock‚, Emmanuel Dibango), distinguished Cameroonian saxophonist, arranger, and band leader; born Douala, Dec. 12, 1933. One of Africa's best-known and most durable musicians, Dibango discovered his affinity for music in a Douala church. He was raised to the age of fifteen in Cameroon then shipped off to France to continue his high school education. There he was smitten with jazz and began to learn mandolin, piano, and eventually saxophone and vibraphone. Sax became his primary instrument when he moved to Brussels at the end of high school in 1956 to take a job playing jazz standards in the house band of the Tabou night club.

The year 1960 found Dibango playing the Anges Noirs in Brussels where he met Congolese singer Joseph Kabasele and his African Jazz. Dibango made his first recordings with African Jazz the following year, then joined the band in Congo-Kinshasa for a re-introduction to Africa that would encompass two years, gigs with African Jazz, and jobs as operator and band leader of two Kinshasa (Léopoldville) clubs. He scored his first hit during this period with "Twist à Léo" recorded in 1962.

Back in France in the mid-sixties, Dibango covered pop standards and soul hits in various groupings and played behind French pop singers Dick Rivers and Nino Ferrer. Near the end of the decade he recorded a series of Afro-Latin-jazz fusion albums with Kabasele and Cuban flutist Don Gonzalo under the name African Team. A solo album, Saxy Party, came out in 1969. Dibango also arranged the music and played piano and sax for singer Franklin Boukaka on the excellent Franklin Boukaka à Paris from 1970.

Dibango kept a band of his own together more or less permanently from the early seventies onward. Although personnel varied, Congolese guitarist Jerry Malekani, formerly of Ry-Co Jazz, usually anchored the group that included bass, drums, and often piano, trumpet, and singers. Personally, Dibango began to cultivate something of a sinister look with shaven head and dark glasses that masked his natural affability.

In Cameroon in 1972 Dibango wrote and recorded his biggest hit, "Soul Makossa." He played sax on the piece and delivered its scant lyrics in a kind of half-whispered sing-speak that would become one of his trademarks. Another version of the song became part of the album O Boso for Belgian Decca, which eventually licensed it to Atlantic Records. The song's popularity led to two Grammy nominations in 1973, a gold record in France (100,000 sales), and Dibango's first U.S. tour (1973), which included dates at the Apollo Theater, Yankee Stadium, and Constitution Hall.

Dibango's inquisitiveness took him to Jamaica at the end of the seventies for two first-rate reggae albums, Gone Clear (released in 1980) and Ambassador (1981), recorded with greats like Sly Dunbar, Robbie Shakespeare, and Geoffrey Chung. The Dibango-produced "Tam-Tam Pour L'Ethiopie" (drum for Ethiopia), recorded in 1985 with a number of African pop stars including Mory Kanté and M'Pongo Love, raised money for refugees in drought-stricken Ethiopia. Dibango ventured into the idiosyncratic world of electronic music for the single "Abele Dance" (1984) with Paris producer Martin Meissonnier and Electric Africa (1985) with Bill Laswell. Afrijazzy (1986) returned to his jazz and African roots. At decade's end he composed music for the Canadian film How to Make Love to a Negro Without Getting Tired.

Despite the passage of his sixtieth birthday, Dibango maintained a steady concert schedule. The CD Wakafrika (1994) remade a number of African hits, including Dibango's own "Soul Makossa," in the company of guest stars Youssou N'Dour, Salif Keita, Papa Wemba, and several others. Mboa'Su (2000) incorporated songs in many of the styles he played over the years, including jazz, reggae, and Congolese rumba.

By his own account Dibango has struggled to reconcile two, often contrary, yearnings: his desire to partake of the intellectual life of Europe and his longing for the sensual spirit of Africa. The search for accommodation seems reflected in his music. He plays jazz with an African touch or reggae with a taste of Paris. "Soul Makossa" linked a Cameroonian rhythm with American soul. His love of experimentation precluded a commercial follow-up to his big hit and any chance at a long-term recording contract. Instead, he pursued a creative agenda of his own design, which limited his mass-market appeal. A versatile and broadly talented musician, Dibango has produced a memorable body of work in his own name and, as an arranger and accompanist, elevated the creations of many others.

On July 14th, 2010, Manu Dibango was made chevalier of the Legion of Honor. He has also been an “artist of peace for the Unesco” since 2004. On last December 12th, Emmanuel N’ Djoké Dibango, under the name of Manu Dibango, the famous saxophonist and Cameroonian singer celebrated his 80 years, with his family a son, Machel and two daughters, Marva and Georgia.! And as he has a large shape, he planned to mark well the occasion! Two parties were scheduled: the first one on December 11th in Paris, then, the second, the next day in Cameroon. Special programs took place all day long on Africa N 1 radio station with the cooperation of Manu and he took this opportunity to also promote his autobiography entitled “Balade en saxo dans les coulisses de ma vie”, published at editions Archipel.

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In 1979, Cameroon’s Manu Dibango became the first high profile African artiste to musically cross over beyond the continent. The album Gone Clear, including the hit song Goro City, represented the union of three black cultures: the African, the Afro-American and the Jamaican. Excellent 1980 recording reissued on CD in 1987. It has since gone out of print and has yet to be reissued in any form since. Produced by Geoffrey Chung.

Manu Dibango - Gone Clear  (flac  226mb)

01 Full Up 4:32
02 Goro City 8:39
03 Doctor Bird 5:03
04 Reggae Makossa 6:35
05 Frozen Soul 4:03
06 Tek-Time 7:03

Manu Dibango - Gone Clear  (ogg 94mb)

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The dates of only a few of these 11 songs are given in the liner notes. It's certain that the 69 minutes of music spans the early '70s to the mid-'80s at the least, but beyond that, the chronology isn't laid out, leaving neophytes to wonder how much of his career this best-of surveys. Leaving that consideration aside, it's a reasonable representation of this important African musician's style, kicking off with his most famous song, "Soul Makossa" -- the first Afrobeat song to become an international smash (making the U.S. Top Forty in 1973), and one that was also important in launching disco as a popular style. "Ekedi" and "Africadelic" sound like they also date from around the early '70s, and are invigorating mixes of jazz, soul, and African music -- the mixture, of course, that helped launch African contemporary music into the global consciousness. Later outings from the late '70s have more of a disco flavor and are inferior to those earlier productions, though the bubbly African rhythms and synergy between different styles is still present. For "Electric Africa" in the mid-'80s, he collaborated with Herbie Hancock and Bill Laswell, which might have given him some cred with certain audiences.

Manu Dibango - Afrosouljazz  (flac  474mb)

01 Soul Makossa 4:21
02 Ekedi 2:37
03 Africadelic 2:12
04 Sun Explosion 9:08
05 A Freak Sans Fric 8:35
06 Oh Koh 10:07
07 Poinciana 3:49
08 Abele Dance 6:52
09 Electric Africa 11:22
10 Africa Boogie 4:18
11 Big Blow 5:43

Manu Dibango - Afrosouljazz  (ogg 178mb)

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A nice compilation of the ultra-varied career of Manu Dibango. The disc jumps from era to era comfortably, but hits upon almost every phase Dibango passed through (with the surprising exception of the original "Soul Makossa"). The album starts out in his early years with a sax-saturated ska in "Ngolowake," moving to the solo marimba work, a smooth jazz-esque version of "Nature Boy," and an orchestral work from his early days. Also included are pieces from the makossa days, contemporary R&B, urban grooves and more. The album ends with a contemporary remix of "Soul Makossa" and "Big Blow," with Bill Laswell and Herbie Hancock taking the sideman roles. Dibango has an über-impressive resume, and this is one of the better collections to introduce listeners to the variety present.

Manu Dibango - Rough Guide To  (flac  478mb)

01 Ngolowake 3:58
02 Miango Ma Tumba 6:08
03 Miss Cavacha 6:08
04 Nature Boy 4:23
05 Mi Niya 5:14
06 Oa Na Mba 3:48
07 Mouna Pola 5:13
08 Baobab Sunset 6:58
09 Super Kumba 8:02
10 Bayam Sellam 5:43
11 Camp Yabassi Echoes  4:15
12 Negropolitaines 7:20
13 Makossa Blow 10:10

Manu Dibango - Rough Guide To   (ogg 196mb)

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Pius Adoyo said...

Please re-up all these posts since the links don't work!
Dr. Adoyo

Pius Adoyo said...

hmmm!, Bigfile, unbelievably fast indeed. Thank you so much for the rapid response.

Dr. Adoyo

Anonymous said...


Can you re-up Manu Dibango - Seventie's please. Thanks.