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Video: "Ntoto" by Fredy Massamba, New Album "Ethnophony"

Congolese artist Fredy Massamba released his album, Ethnophony featuring the single "Ntoto."

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This past spring, Congolese artist Fredy Massamba released his album, Ethnophony in France - and luckily we hear there is soon to be a U.S. release as well. With an exciting mix of soul, reggae and acoustic music reminiscent of Anthony Hamilton, Fredy incorporates many African sounds into the mix as well.  Speaking of the mix, the entire album including "Ntoto" was mixed by Tom Soares who's worked with Erykah Badu, Rakim, Alicia Keys and more. Check out the vid for his single "Ntoto" above.  Sung completely in Kikongo (the Bantu language spoken by the Bakongo and Bandundu of DRC), his songs speak of tolerance, love and hope for the African people. You can listen to the album in its entirety on his website, and then buy it HERE. After a receiving a wonderful response in Europe, Fredy is making his way to New York to present the album. After watching "Ntoto," be sure to check him out on tour (NYC + Europe) - dates after the jump.

 

Fredy Massamba NYC Tour Dates:

Southpaw, Brooklyn- Sept. 9

Farafina Cafe, Harlem- Sept. 10

Shrine, Harlem- Sept. 12

Audio
(Youtube)

7 Gengetone Acts You Need to Check Out

The streets speak gengetone: Kenya's gengetone sound is reverberating across East Africa and the world, get to know its main purveyors.

Sailors' "Wamlambez!"Wamlambez!" which roughly translates to "those who lick," is the cry the reverberated round the world, pushing the gengetone sound to the global stage. The response "wamnyonyez" roughly translates to "those who suck" and that should tell you all you need to know about the genre.

Known for its lewd lyrics and repetitive (often call and response) hooks, gengetone makes no apologies for belonging to the streets. First of all, most artists that create gengetone are grouped into bands with a few outliers like Zzero Sufuri riding solo. The songs themselves often feature a multiplicity of voices with screams and crowds coming through as ad libs, adding to this idea that this is definitely "outside" music.

Listening to Odi wa Muranga play with his vocal on the track "Thao" it's easy to think that this is the first, but gengetone fits snuggly in a history of sheng rap based on the kapuka style beat. Kapuka is onomatopoeically named, the beats have that repetitive drum-hat-drum skip that sounds like pu-ka-pu-ka-pu. Artists like Nonini were asking women to come over using this riff long before Ochungulo family told them to stay home if they aren't willing to give it up.

Here's seven gengetone groups worth listening to.

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