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Cameroonian Jazz Legend Manu Dibango Has Passed Away

The 86-year-old musician, who was recovering at a hospital in France, died after having tested positive for the coronavirus.

Cameroonian jazz legend, Manu Dibango, has passed away according to reports by the BBC.

The 86-year-old musician was "recovering and resting in serenity" at a hospital just outside Paris, France, after having tested positive for the coronavirus.


Dibango's family confirmed his death in a Facebook post which reads: "It is with deep sadness that we announce the loss of Manu Dibango, our Papy Groove, who passed away on 24 March 2020, at 86 years old, because of Covid-19." The family also communicated that a public memorial service would be held at a later time and that presently, they would be conducting his funeral in private.

OkayAfrica's Damola Durosomo describes Dibango as one of the "foremost pioneers of Afro-jazz, known for his fusion of funk with traditional Cameroonian sounds." Durosomo adds that, "His iconic1972 B-side "Soul Makossa" was a global hit, which both Michael Jackson and Rihanna famously referenced in their hit songs "Wanna Be Startin Somethin," and "Please Don't Stop the Music," respectively—reportedly without Dibango's permission. He later settled a lawsuit with the artists over their use of the track's hook."

A giant has fallen indeed and the continent now mourns Dibango and his decades-long contribution to jazz and music as a whole—an indelible discography.

Dibango's death comes at a time where Africa's number of confirmed number of coronavirus cases stands at well over 1000 and the deathtoll at just over 20. Other African celebrities and public figures to confirm having tested positive for coronavirus include Idris Elba and more recently, the late Nelson Mandela's grandson, Ndaba Mandela.

Tributes have been pouring in for Dibango since the news of his death emerged.

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Sarkodie Is Not Feeling Any Pressure

The elite Ghanaian rapper affirms his king status with this seventh studio album, No Pressure.

Sarkodie is one of the most successful African rappers of all time. With over ten years of industry presence under his belt, there's no question about his prowess or skin in the game. Not only is he a pioneer of African hip-hop, he's also the most decorated African rapper, having received over 100 awards from close to 200 nominations over the span of his career.

What else does Sarkodie have to prove? For someone who has reached and stayed at the pinnacle of hip-hop for more than a decade, he's done it all. But despite that, he's still embracing new growth. One can tell just by listening to his latest album, No Pressure, Sarkodie's seventh studio album, and the follow-up to 2019's Black Love which brought us some of the Ghanaian star's best music so far. King Sark may be as big as it gets, but the scope of his music is still evolving.

Sonically, No Pressure is predominantly hip-hop, with the first ten tracks offering different blends of rap topped off with a handful of afrobeats and, finally, being crowned at the end with a gospel hip-hop cut featuring Ghanaian singer MOG. As far as the features go, Sark is known for collaborating mostly with his African peers but this time around he branches out further to feature a number of guests from around the world. Wale, Vic Mensa, and Giggs, the crème de la crème of rap in America and the UK respectively all make appearances, as well as Nigeria's Oxlade, South Africa's Cassper Nyovest, and his fellow Ghanaian artists Darkovibes and Kwesi Arthur.

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