Papa Wemba set to rock African music festival

2014-12-21 06:15

Congolose rumba musician Papa Wemba (65) is among the artists who will be performing for the first time today at the 6th Buyel’ Ekhaya Annual Pan African Music Festival.

The line-up at the Buffalo Cricket Stadium in East London includes Zimbabwean born Oliver Mtukudzi, jazz musician Ray Phiri, kwaito group Trompies and award-winning duo Mafikizolo.

City Press had a quick chat with Wemba.

» CP: Are you looking forward to performing today?

Wemba: I’m honoured and I look forward to performing at the Buyel’ Ekhaya Music Festival as it celebrates six years of existence.

» CP: What influences the sound of your latest album Maitre d’Ecole?

Wemba: My latest album or my music is influenced by what I’m living everyday. For example, love, my country or my continent Africa.

» CP: What is the difference between your latest album and previous ones?

Wemba: This album features artists that are mostly from DRC and also one that is from another country with different sounds.

» CP: What kind of situations make you write music?

Wemba: As mentioned above – situations that I live every day of my life: love, death, Africa and Congo.

» CP: Has your sound changed in the past years?

Wemba: Yes, it has changed a lot. Featuring other artists that have their own techniques and different styles of singing could only lead me to adapt my music to their vocals or my vocals to their style of music.

» CP: You have been in the music industry for more than three decades; what do you still look forward to achieve?

Wemba: I want to experiment with every type of music and sound from all around the world since my voice is my only instrument... I will be singing for as long as I still have it.

» CP: As the country celebrates 20 years of democracy, what is your message to South Africans and all new democracies on the continent?

Wemba: Respecting the rules of democracy for the interest of the country and the population.

» CP: What is your favourite food?

Wemba: Rice, cassava leaves and fish.

» CP: How do you spend your spare time?

Wemba: I enjoy listening to jazz music and I also enjoy reading.

» CP: If you were not a musician, what else do you think you would have chosen?

Wemba: I would be a journalist.

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