Tuesday, 12 May 2009
Living in the East End of London in the 80's was a real eye opener as far as music went. The flea markets off Brick Lane were especially rich in all manner of records from all over the world and this is where I found this excellent LP by Theo Blaise. From the Congo but living in Paris where a thriving scene of african music was growing. This LP was released in 1983.
"Soukous (also known as Lingala or Congo, and previously as African rumba) is a musical genre that originated in the two neighbouring countries of Belgian Congo and French Congo during the 1930s and early 1940s, and which has gained popularity throughout Africa. "Soukous" (said to be a derivative of the French word secouer, to shake) was originally the name of a dance popular in the Congos in the late 1960s, and danced to an African version of rumba. Although the genre was initially known as rumba (sometimes termed specifically as African rumba), the term "soukous" has come to refer to African rumba and its subsequent developments.
Soukous is called Congo music in West Africa, and Lingala in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania - referring to the Lingala language of the region from where it originated. In the 1980s and early 1990s, a fast-paced style of soukous known as kwassa kwassa – named after a popular dance, was popular. A style called ndombolo, also named after a dance, is currently popular."