An optimistic African independence song from the Belgian Congo that struck a chord in Francophone African countries that, like Zaire, were just becoming independent in the early 1960s. The original version is by Le Grand Kallé, a Congolese musician prominent in the ’50s, known as the “Father of Congolese Music”–hear the original on YouTube. Le Grand Kallé (Joseph Kabasele) first performed the song in Brussels during talks with the Belgians that set the date for Congo’s independence. He wrote the song in languages that were in use both in the French Congo and the Belgian Congo as part of a statement to call for post-independence cultural and political unity…though as we know, at least lately, that things in the Democratic Republic of Congo haven’t been so peaceful.
Country: The Democratic Republic of Congo
Language: originally in French, Kikongo and Tshiluba
Genre: Congolese Rumba
Congolese rapper Baloji updates Independence Cha Cha
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