Early 1980 were the two 'Sound d'Afrique' LP's on the Mango label, for many their first introduction to African pop music. Volume one opens with the song 'Me bowa ya' by Mekongo.
Mekongo (President) hails from Yaoundé, the capital of Cameroon. At a young age he started singing and playing piano, sax and guitar. In 1970 he decided to become a professional musician and moved to Douala. He worked with Ekambi Brillant and in 1971 he started his own band, 'Les Tulipes Noirs'. With this band he toured in Senegal, Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Ivory Coast, Gabon and Kenya. In 1975 he visited Canada and Europe. In 1977 he joined the French disco group 'Black Soul'. In 1979 he returned to Cameroon and made his first record for Disque Esperance. In the eighties he became one of the modernizers of Bikutsi music.
In the study 'A history of Bikutsi music in Cameroon' by Hortense and Charles Fuller, the following is written about the role of Mekongo President in the development of Bikutsi music.
'Mekongo President introduced his bland of Bikutsi-Jazz,combining complex harmonies and arrangements'
For those who are interested in reading the whole article: Africasounds: History of Bikutsi
The following track by Mekongo President is not a Bikutsi track. It is more in the style of the Sound d'Afrique track, with some Makossa guitars added by Toto Guillaume.