On Friday, December 20, 2013
The compilers of this double CD set are containing a voyage into musical nostalgia which, in the previous Golden Afrique release, left them in francophone West Africa during the 1970s.
Here they arrive in the Gongo - rumba region - where music and dance had proven to be even more of a life-enchansing necessity than in other parts of the continent. In many ways, music has benn an essential element in the cultural and political, as well as social aspects of life in the Congo. It became much more than just an accompaniment to daily life in the 1950s, when electric guitars and rudimentary recording studios were introduced to the ex-Belgian Congo by enterprising euro-entrepreneurs.
The highly regarded guitar-picking styles, the irresistible rhythms, sublime harmonies and a feeling of barely suppressed euphoria have made Congolese rumba one of the world's greatest genres of dance music. In the West and other African countries outside of the Congo, the music has been known for some years as soukous, but back home it was always called rumba. As the Grand Master Franco Luambo Makiadi often stated, rumba music originally travelled from Congo to Cuba in the hearts and memoriesof the slaves who were trasported there. Centuries later, when Africa started hearing the post-World War 2 son and dance music from Cuba it attracted listeners from all parts who recognised something essentially African within it. Not surprisingly, musicians in many corners of Africa re-appropriated "their" music, and none more successfully than the Congolese. Spiced up with amplified guitars and soul-band-style horn sections, the rhythm-driven music imprinted its identity on Africa during the mid to late 1950s and came to maturity in the following decades. At that time, the guitar was revealed as the essential African instrument. (The instrument had been introduced to the continent in the 16th century by Portuguese travellers, and musicians in leopoldville had used it to mimic the sound of the traditional likembe or sanza.)
Rumba was, even then, a catch-all description which embraced other Latin or Afro-Caribbean rhythms including son, merengue, Pachanga, cha cha cha, beguine and bolero. These were alternated and/or amalgamated with indigenous popular dance beats such as maringa, agbwaya and soukous, and periodically other traditional dances were revived as pop curiosities which sometimes became massive crazes. There were also many influences from other parts of Africa, notably bighlife, palm wine, gombe and other west African rhythms and guitar styles which made a markt in the Congo during the early 1950s. And elements of widely differing international musics were also picked up from radio programmes and records including French chanson, German and Polish polka, American swing and Jazz, and later on, British "beat" groups, among others. Congolese rumba was almost immediately taken up in other African coun tries, thanks to pan-African radio broadcasts and a network of enlightened (in a commercial, if not cultural sense) distributors who relicensed the works of major artistes in all corners of the continent. The influence of Congolese rumba has thus been spread from the farthest corner of West Africa to the Indian Ocean islands off the east coast. It is the only African music to have appealed to so many cultures, transcending the barriers of languages, nationality, social class, age and ethnicity to become a pan-African phenomenon.
01. Coopération - Franco, Sam Mangwana
02. Doublé-Doublé - Nyboma
03. Africa Mokili Mobimba - African Jazz, Joseph Kabasele
04. Indépendance Cha Cha Cha - African Jazz, Joseph Kabasele
05. Siluwangi Wapi Accordeon - Camille Feruzi, Franco, OK Jazz Band
06. Marabenta (Vamos Para O Campo) - Sam Mangwana
07. Machette - Les Bantous de la Capitale
08. Lina - Franco, OK Jazz Band
09. Tcha Tcha Tcha de Mi Amor - Franco, OK Jazz Band
10. Exhibition Dechaud - Docteur Nico, Orchestra African Fiesta
11. Pauline - Docteur Nico, Orchestra African Fiesta
12. Bawayo - Tiers Monde Coop
01. Pele Odija - Mose Se 'Fan Fan'
02. Mambo Ry-Co - Ry-Co Jazz
03. Cha Cha Cha Bay - Camille Feruzi
04. Bibi Yangu - Vibes
05. Ndaya - M'Pongo Love
06. Bika Nzanga - Vibes
07. Como Bacalao - Sam Mangwana, Tabu Ley Rochereau
08. Mazé - Tabu Ley Rochereau
09. Ekedy - Manu Dibango
10. Mu Nzila N'Sona - K.P. Flammy
11. Mami Yo (Kuruze Ya Campus) - Nyboma
12. Aon-Aon - Tabu Ley Rochereau
13. Kahagwe - Camille Feruzi
14. Yaka Mama - Lucie Eyenga
15. Basi Banso Tapale - Manuel D'Oliveira
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