Its followers, the Sapeurs, who were outspoken fashion rebels of the Republic of Congo and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), imbibed Wemba’s philosophy and guiding light, which promoted “high standards of personal cleanliness, hygiene and smart dress”.The fact that Wemba collapsed on stage and died soon after, on April 24, says something of his largesse, and, ironically, of his physical fitness. Every other Sunday I present two hours of Congolese popular music, brought to you by WRIR 97.3 FM, Richmond, Virginia's all volunteer community radio station.The music is broadcast live on air and streamed live on the net.I've started the year off with a show that features everyone's favorite: older music on vinyl.Thanks for listening and I hope to hear from YOU soon!Daudi This program, along with programs dating back to 2005, is available for rebroadcast at Radio4All
Mande griots continue to dominate the musical scene in Mali the featured country in this part of our project.
Not all griot families practise music, but those who do, consider it a duty for their children to be well versed in the griot arts.
Performance skills and knowledge of repertoire are picked up informally by rote and osmosis within extended families.
The DRC’s cultural minister Baudouin Banza Mukalay called Wemba a self-made man, an honour that would doubtlessly have pleased the controversial musician.
Born Jules Shungu Wembadio Pene Kikumba on June 14 1949 in what was then the Belgian Congo (now the DRC), Wemba inherited his love for music from his adoptive mother, a professional mourner who sang at funerals.