zaterdag 17 april 2021

Charlotte Dipanda

The story of this young woman born in Yaoundé could almost be a fairy tale, as her rise was so rapid, a sign of a natural talent that today takes on its full dimension.
The young Cameroonian started out as a backing singer in the studio and on stage. She accompanied the greatest artists such as Manu DIBANGO or Rokia TRAORE before joining the Gospel pour 100 voix choir with which she performed in the Zeniths of France alongside artists such as Axelle RED.
In 2009, she gave her career a decisive turn by devoting herself to her solo adventure. A few months later, Charlotte DIPANDA "gave birth" to her "first baby" named MISPA. This first album was recorded in Paris with Guy Nsangue, THE reference of Cameroonian bass players. Fulfilling perfectly his role of producer, he knew how to understand the acoustic universe that the young woman likes and give to the whole a nice coherence, leaning at times on the side of makossa while passing by afrobeat.

With this project, she has toured the stages of France and has been propelled to the rank of star in Cameroon, her native land, where she now plays to full houses. She has continued to rub shoulders with artists from the continent who see her as a worthy representative of singing in the tradition of African divas.

After more than 200 concerts, she offers the public a second album. The same sobriety as on Mispa is present, but with an extra touch of maturity. This album, tinged with emotion, takes us on a journey through the melodies, a clever mix of traditional music, jazz and acoustics with lyrics in Douala, Bakaka and French. At the turn of a title, we have the beautiful surprise to find Richard BONA in duet as well as Jacob DESVARIEUX, the famous singer of Kassav. If we linger on the album cover, we have the joy of discovering another collaboration, that of Lokua KANZA who wrote the song Kumb'élolo. "Dube L'am" tells beautiful stories. "Dube L'am", which means "my faith", translates Charlotte's convictions and all those things she believes in. This naivety that she always sees the best in others.

♫ Video Clip: 2012 – Charlotte Dipanda ft. Richard Bona – Bodimbea 4:24

♫ Live: 2014 – Charlotte Dipanda live @ l’Européan Paris 12/02/2014 – Coucou 7:47

Charlotte Dipanda always looks at us straight on her third album. This symbolic evolution is reflected in the new songs and in the artistic approach of the Cameroonian singer, who has already won the hearts of her compatriots.

Through the ten songs of Massa, the young woman establishes a direct dialogue, does not hesitate to take a stand to talk about her country, and also expresses her bitterness on Elle n'a pas vu, which evokes her grandmother who is so present in her.

For this new project, her openness towards her native continent and the cultures that come from it is reflected in the choice of her collaborators: the Cape Verdean "Nando" (Fernando Andrade) who worked for Cesaria Evora for a long time, the guitarists Hervé Samb from Senegal and OlivierTshimanga from Congo or the Brazilian percussionist Zé Luis Nascimento.

♫ Video Clip: 2015 – Charlotte Dipanda – Ndolo Bukate (Un peu d’amour) 3:21

Long-time partner, bassist Guy Nsangue, translates Charlotte's artistic desires as a producer, to better convey the emotions of this voice that is ageless and gently penetrates the soul.
In 2018 she released her fourth album, A day in my life, recorded in Paris and Los Angeles. Once again, bassist Guy Nsangue guarantees beautiful arrangements and a highly professional production. As a guest, Charlotte has managed to enlist Nigerian star Yemi Alade. In the upbeat closing number 'Dumea', she sings a duet with Cameroonian Ambass-Bey legend Salle John.  She celebrated the release of this album with two huge concerts in Douala and Yaoundé and a totally new show in the mythical Grand Rex in Paris. 

♫ Live: 2018 – Charlotte Dipanda & Salle John live au Grand Rex Paris 15/09/2018 – Dumea 8:18

In early 2021, Charlotte Dipanda will release her fifth and, according to her, most personal album. It is not for nothing that the album title is formed by her initials; 'CD'. The album contains 10 songs, including a duet with her buddy Singuila and is released on Universal Africa.

The fact that Charlotte Dipanda is now 'a big lady' in African pop music was recently confirmed when Koffi Olomide invited her to record a duet entitled 'Mon Amour'. 


zondag 11 april 2021

Samy Diko

Samuel Dikongue a.ka. Samy Diko started his musical career in Les Sans Visas of Petit Pays, where he developed into one of the most popular singers of the orchestra as a second voice. This popularity may have contributed to his departure from the Sans Visas and a conflict with bandleader Petit Pays that today, more than 20 years later, still has not been resolved. In a recent statement, Samy Diko did take a first step towards reconciliation.

After leaving Les Sans Visas, he released his first solo album in 1998 entitled 'Mon Mari', in which he fuses Makossa and Zouk Love under the name Makossa Love. He now has six albums to his name plus several singles including a duet with Locko in 2018.

♫ Video Clip: 1999 Samy Diko - Je vous aime 6:39

♫ Video Clip: 2002 Samy Diko – Merci 7:05

♫ Audio: 2020 Samy Diko - Mumi 3:46


vrijdag 2 april 2021

Franck Chaleur

Longo Francois, also known as Franck Chaleur, became known as the lead singer of 'Le Testament du Makossa', the musical project with Makossa medleys started by Aladji Toure in the late 1990s. Before that, in 1996, he had already contributed to another album released by Toure under the name 'Cameroon Stars 2000'. 

With the release of his first solo album 'Les on dit' in 1998, Franck Chaleur cashed in on this earlier success. This debut album was followed in 2002 by a second album entitled 'Sans Frontières'.

In 2016, Franck Chaleur was diagnosed with leukaemia, from which he unfortunately passed away over 2 years later in January 2019.


Belmond de Boville

Belmond de Boville is a bassist who released in 2007 a solo album entitled 'New Vision'. 

♫ Video Clip: 2007 – Belmond de Boville – Délinquance Juvénile 5’49


maandag 29 maart 2021

Bebe Manga

Early life

Bebe Manga was born on November 27, 1948 and hails from Tinto, Upper Bayang Sub-Division in Manyu Division, South West region. She told in a 1999 interview that her musical career which dates back to 1979 at the then Bar Americain cabaret in Douala was the by-product of an “accident” She had gone on a routine relaxation outing with friends, when one of the bar performers staged a belated rendition of the song “kissa kissa” which happened to be one of her favorite songs. Her entourage exhorted the Bar owner that Bebe Manga could sing better, and the manager took the challenge and gave her the chance. She produced a rhapsodic and scintillating performance that captivated and held the audience spellbound. The Bar manager could not help, but hire her instantly! And so began her roller-coaster career which took her to several African countries – Zaire, Togo, Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso, and Ivory Coast.

Rise to fame

Bebe Manga rose to international fame in 1980 when she replayed Ebanda Manfred’s 1962 radio hit, “Amie” (meaning “friend” in French). 

♫ Audio: 1980 – Bebe Manga – Amio

Bebe Manga’s version known as “Amio” earned her the prestigious “Maracas D’or” award from SACEM, and a firm place in history as one of Cameroon’s greatest voices.  Most notably, Bebe Manga transformed Ebanda Manfred’s little-known Radio Douala recording into a worldwide hit, and made it an iconic song replayed by artists all over the world..

Later, at the end of the 1990s, she covered another classic song, Charles Lembes "Mota Benamaa", deploring the situation of children suffering around the world. Her talents were celebrated at the Top D'Or 2005 in Abidjan, as she was voted one of the best African artists of all time.

♫ Audio: 2000 – Bebe Manga – Mota Benamaa

She is featured on Manu Dibango's "Manu Safari" album, and partnered with other talented artists like Tom Yoms on several hits. Some of her other songs, (some of which) now feature in an online "BEST OF BEBE MANGA" COMPILATION, are: Aloba, Bele Sombo, Djiya kamba, Alice Agbor, Esele mba, Jemea longo, Muna Muto, Eyiegele Ding and Zipte Men. 


On 1 July 2011 Bébé Manga died on the way to hospital after suffering a heart attack at her home in Douala. She was 62. She was buried on 30 July 2011 in her family compound in Tinto, Upper Bayang sub-division of Manyu Division, Cameroon. Early 2012 the young talented singer composer Martino Ngalle recorded a beautiful tribute to this diva of Cameroon music. 

♫ Video Clip: 2012 – Martino Ngalle ft. Bebe Manga – Dikom


In the past decades, Amio has been replayed dozens of times and in different languages by musicians in Europe, The Caribbean, Latin and North America, and Africa, among them André Astasié, Henri Salvador, star of the French song in 1982, Manu Dibango in 1993, Monique Seka, Nayanka Bell, Fred Paul, Passi and Bisso na Biso in 2000, Papa Wemba and Angelique Kidjo, Jacky Biho, Naima, along with African Connection with Denise and Bloco in 2004 (Summer Hit in France and Gold Plate Record) are among those prestigious artist who played, adapted and interpreted this Hit single and Bébé Manga again (in English).


Tonye Jackson

Tonye Jackson, a Bassa man, released three albums in the early 1980s with Makossa, mixed with Congolese influences and Bassa rhythms such as Assiko.

♫ Audio: 1985 – Tonye Jackson – Humanisme Africain


dinsdag 16 maart 2021

Georges Dickson

Georges Dickson was popular in the second half of the 80s and the first half of the 90s with his "Makozouk" style, a mix of Makossa and Zouk. He scored several hits during those years, including "Kiss Me Doudou", "Crise Economique" and "Ville Morte". In the last two songs, he comments on the economic crisis and the resistance against it, which prevailed in Cameroon around 1990. 

♫ Video Clip: 1990 – Crise economique - Georges Dickson

♫ Video Clip: 1992 – Villes mortes - Georges Dickson

After his 1995 album, Georges Dickson remained silent for several years. At the beginning of the new millennium, he released a few more albums that did not become very well known because of poor distribution. In recent years, with the exception of an occasional video clip, little has been heard from him.

♫ Video Clip: 2012 – Georges Dickson – Ne tirez pas sur l’artiste

♫ Video Clip: 2017 – 3ème Pied - Georges Dickson