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Mwenda Jean Bosco

Jean Bosco Mwenda
In 1952, collector Hugh Tracey recorded a Congolese composer, singer, and guitar player named Mwenda Jean Bosco, also known as Mwenda we Bayeke. Tracey was on one of his annual recording tours and came across Mwenda in Likasi (then known as Jadotville) in what is now the democratic Republic of Congo. Mwenda was twenty-two at the time and had not yet been recorded. He recorded eight songs in one day and Tracey took them back to his South African home where Mwenda became a hit.

Mwenda Jean Bosco's music was influenced by the local traditional music of Katanga (also known as Shaba) where Mwenda lived, as well as church music, popular Latin American music heard on recordings, and other Katanga guitar players. He used basic melodic phrases and improvised on them, both melodically and rhythmically. He was a Sanga speaker but also sang in Swahili, which could be understood by a larger audience. Bosco died in 1990 (Coetzee 2003; Rycroft 1961).

Track Listing

101
Masanga (Introduction) Jean Bosco Mwenda 04:15  
102
Masanga Jean Bosco Mwenda 02:59  
103
Namilia-e (Introduction) Jean Bosco Mwenda 00:51  
104
Namilia-e Jean Bosco Mwenda 02:51  
105
Mama Kilio-e (Introduction) Jean Bosco Mwenda 00:23  
106
Mama Kilio-e Jean Bosco Mwenda 03:03  
107
Sokuchomale Jikita (Introduction) Jean Bosco Mwenda 01:31  
108
Sokuchomale Jikita Jean Bosco Mwenda 02:51  
109
Tambala moja (Introduction) Jean Bosco Mwenda 00:52  
110
Tambala moja Jean Bosco Mwenda 03:12  
111
Mama na Mwana (Introduction) Jean Bosco Mwenda 01:05  
112
Mama na Mwana (Mother and child) Jean Bosco Mwenda 02:52  
113
Bombalaka (Introduction) Jean Bosco Mwenda 00:52  
114
Bombalaka (Bachelor) Jean Bosco Mwenda 02:49  
115
Paulina Mubaya (Introduction) Jean Bosco Mwenda 00:36  
116
Paulina Mubaya (Bad Paulina) Jean Bosco Mwenda 03:07  
117
Masanga (instrumental) (Introduction) Jean Bosco Mwenda 00:45  
118
Masanga (instrumental) Jean Bosco Mwenda 03:07  
119
Mwenda Jean Bosco Outro Jean Bosco Mwenda 01:22