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‘Create new music by using old genres as inspiration’-Manu Dibango

Manu Dibango (c)All rights reserved

Young African musicians have been urged to create new music by using old genres as inspiration.

Going by, Cameroonian saxophonist Manu Dibango, made the call at the Carnivore Grounds in Nairobi on 1 May.

Hear him: “A lot of the young musicians believe that all music that comes from America is the best,” he said.” I have lived in the US for some time and I can tell you that the Americans look for inspiration in Africa. Why else would Michael Jackson and Rihanna borrow a line from my ‘Soul Makossa’?”

“This means that if young musicians use what is our own they can inspire the world into wanting to listen to African music and eventually earn their spot on the global stage.”

Going by Dibango artista can sample Western sounds while still keeping in tact elements of authentic African genres flowing.

“Over the years, I have explored jazz, funk and soul with ease and still managed to incorporate the African elements,” he said.

“I mostly do jazz, which originated from America, but I am not an American jazz player because I have added the Makossa beat to my music, making it my own African style.”

Dibango however decried the fact that  most African leaders are not doing a good job in archiving old music.

“Whenever I meet with leaders from Cameroon I always insist on the need to bring back our original music and artefacts from Germany,” he said. “I believe that if there are local places where young people can visit to learn and discover their musical heritage, then it will be easier to facilitate the transition from traditional to contemporary sounds.”

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