Author Topic: IF I WANTED TO GET INTO ZAIKO'S MUSIC, WHICH ERA + 5 ESSENTIAL ALBUMS?  (Read 537 times)

faithandwar on: July 09, 2018, 23:55

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So i'm not too well informed on the history of Zaiko because it seems pretty long/intimidating and i'm not where and which angle of their music I should move up from.
The only album that i've listened to in full is Nippon Banzai.

I'm hoping to get into different eras/ and know the their best line up as well as their best albums from their catalogue.
Any suggestions?

mvulusi96 #1 on: July 10, 2018, 00:21

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That's difficult to say because after 1992 their decline started, in the era before they were just releasing albums of 4 songs or singles. They started to release album with 8 songs and more from 1990 with Ici Ca Va. Zaiko has differents era that of 1970-1971 when they were like copycats of Los Nickelos, the Isifi-era of 1971-1974 which is for some the best, that of 1975-1978 (of the dangerous quartet Nyoka-Bimi-Likinga-Lengi Lenga), that of 1978-1981 which is for some also seen as the best, and the one of 1981-1988 followed by the one of 1988-1992.

About albums I would say Avis de Recherche (1995) and Ici Cava (1990). Jamais Sans Nous (1991) is also a good one, but peoples born 90's don't like it. You got masterpiece LP's like Pusa Kuna....Serrez Serrez(1986), Eh Ngoss! Eh Ngoss! Eh Ngoss! (1985).The remix albums Bongama Kamata Position (1987) & Jetez l'Eponge (1989), which had the then 3 new songs Nono, Bolingo Etumbu and Mofiti. Also the LP's Nkolo Mboka vol. 1 & 2. (1982), who were released in 1982 after the split with Langa Langa Stars, which has songs like Wedou, Bolingo Aveugle, Sans Espoir, Mopaya Zoba, etc. You had also some nice songs released in 1980 under the name of Pepe Felly Manuaku Obi & Femme ne Pleure Pas, but I think that they were released as singles like other songs of that era.
« Last Edit: July 10, 2018, 00:27 by mvulusi96 »

Tata Nkiadi #2 on: July 10, 2018, 00:50

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You can't go wrong with a Dindo-Buse-Nyoka-Lengi Lenga-Ombale line up, which by far has to be their most successful era before the huge split in the late 80s.  Any album from that era are all my favorites, which also includes the albums mvulusi96 mentioned as well as On Gagne Le Procès and Tala Modele Echange.  Zaiko used to have a website which that listed a complete history, including arrivals and departures of members and a complete discography.  I hate that site is no longer functional as it was a great reference tool for me.

Longbluesquid #3 on: July 10, 2018, 01:19

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Funny you mention this today. In the car I was listening to Poison. Such a good album I think. Avis de reserche, etumba la vie and feeling. But also dive into the classics mentioned.

Matebu #4 on: July 10, 2018, 03:45

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My uncle was one of Zaiko's manager/admins from 1974-1987. He booked nearly all their European concert venues. One of these days I need to sit down with him and transcribe the band's history from an adminstrative level. He's on his way out so i don't want his story to be lost forever. He was the one who gave me background on their albums - like inspiration for x or y song

Anyways my top 5 based on impact. Best era was 1981-1988 (split)

- Gitta Production Presente Tout-Choc Zaïko Langa-Langa (1980-81) - This was the album that solidfied Zaiko as the top dance group of Zaire going into the decade of the 1980's. Top song - Mobembo.... the sebene is lethal. Helped make Pepe Felly Manuaku Waku a legend because he literally shifted the concept of sebene to it's modern (and still current) form.

- Muvaro (1983) - This album and particularly the groundbreaking sebene set the tone for the rest of the 80's. Years after you heard Muvaro in all clubs and parties. Top song - Muvaro... The song speaks for itself. Beniko Popolipo became the hottest young guitar prodigy then.

Eh Ngoss! Eh Ngoss! Eh Ngoss! (1985) - Amazing. Top song... Dindo Yogo's "Liwa yo Moyibi" was song of the year second to Mario. The sebene defines my childhood.

- Pusa Kuna....Serrez Serrez (1986) - Superb 80's acoustic quality and has some of my favorite Zaiko songs - Paiement Cash (Nyoka Longo), Mathi ya Ilo (aut. Ilo Pablo), and Mena (Matima Piosso).

- Avis de Recherche (1995) - As we know, Zaiko at this point was on a sharp decline after Nyoka kicked all significant members out. I love this album, but at the same time it was too good for Zaiko's sake.... it's their last truly great album, as they worked so hard to prove critics wrong.

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Bonus: Nippon Banzai - Live in Japan (1986) - this is actually the most commercially succesful Zaiko album, and thus the most commercially successful Congolese live album. The acoustic sound from the technology of Japan was so far beyond what audiences heard before. Still sounds great today. Also, you can hear live versions of all their hits in medley form.
« Last Edit: July 10, 2018, 03:52 by Matebu »

masatomo #5 on: July 10, 2018, 14:31

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Interesting thread. I always wanted to know more about Zaiko's discography in the 70's & 80's. I only know their 90's/2000's albums. Even if I know some of their 70's/80's classics.

Tata Nkiadi #6 on: July 10, 2018, 14:50

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-----
Bonus: Nippon Banzai - Live in Japan (1986) - this is actually the most commercially succesful Zaiko album, and thus the most commercially successful Congolese live album. The acoustic sound from the technology of Japan was so far beyond what audiences heard before. Still sounds great today. Also, you can hear live versions of all their hits in medley form.

Nippon Banzai, though one of my faves as a kid, is my least favorite album.  The album was never live, there were no original songs and the fake applause tracks were annoying.  I get the concept, promote the playlist, shorten the songs for the Japanese audience and that formula along with the Japanese tour helped to spring up "soukous" bands in Japan, but again my least favorite. 

Matebu #7 on: July 10, 2018, 16:41

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Bonus: Nippon Banzai - Live in Japan (1986) - this is actually the most commercially succesful Zaiko album, and thus the most commercially successful Congolese live album. The acoustic sound from the technology of Japan was so far beyond what audiences heard before. Still sounds great today. Also, you can hear live versions of all their hits in medley form.

Nippon Banzai, though one of my faves as a kid, is my least favorite album.  The album was never live, there were no original songs and the fake applause tracks were annoying.  I get the concept, promote the playlist, shorten the songs for the Japanese audience and that formula along with the Japanese tour helped to spring up "soukous" bands in Japan, but again my least favorite.

That album though was perfect for Western audiences, particularly those who just learned about the band or even African music in general. I agree it takes out the soul of Zaiko, if that was what you were alluding to... it’s like a movie with non-stop action scenes rather than a slow intriguing buildup

MwanaMokili #8 on: July 10, 2018, 17:53

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Quote

Nippon Banzai, though one of my faves as a kid, is my least favorite album.  The album was never live, there were no original songs and the fake applause tracks were annoying.  I get the concept, promote the playlist, shorten the songs for the Japanese audience and that formula along with the Japanese tour helped to spring up "soukous" bands in Japan, but again my least favorite.
Quote
That album though was perfect for Western audiences, particularly those who just learned about the band or even African music in general. I agree it takes out the soul of Zaiko, if that was what you were alluding to... it’s like a movie with non-stop action scenes rather than a slow intriguing buildup

The dilema most Lingala bands have with international audiences are
1. Language barrier where the audience does not really understand what the lyrics of the song are
2. For Radio, the average Lingala song is too long for airplay, so most have to be cut short.

Nippon Bonzai was the innovative solution to these two problems in that the songs were limited to just short renditions of their biggest hits, just to highlight the instrumental parts and short enough to fit the three/four minute airplay limit, they sounded complete.

From this developed a concept of short lingala songs contrary to the mainstream greats like  Franco and Tabu Ley whose songs would be as long as fifteen minutes. This led to international radio exposure and audiences acceptance.

Thereafter we started seeing the same format from the likes of Arlus Mabele and Loketo, Kassav and other session musicians developing what was called internationally 'Soukouss'  ....


Tata Nkiadi #9 on: July 10, 2018, 21:06

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Thereafter we started seeing the same format from the likes of Arlus Mabele and Loketo, Kassav and other session musicians developing what was called internationally 'Soukouss'  ....

You mean to tell me Zaiko are the ones to blame for Kanda Bongo Man and his peers?? ;D

hat album though was perfect for Western audiences, particularly those who just learned about the band or even African music in general. I agree it takes out the soul of Zaiko, if that was what you were alluding to... it’s like a movie with non-stop action scenes rather than a slow intriguing buildup

Yeah I understood the concept and it's subsequent popularity.  It's just one of those albums that I rarely go to.  Same goes for Franco's Animation Non Stop, Sam Mangwana's Megamix and any song Pepe Kalle re-made to fit into the soukous format.

bencuri #10 on: July 10, 2018, 23:56

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I think Nippon Banzai is not a very good album. It is a quite poor summary of their work which had much more interesting highlights. They recorded way much better live sessions than that, never understood why Nippon Banzai was pushed more than those.

If you are a beginner, you should start with:

Piéces a Conviction, Zaiko Dansez Othule, Subissez Les Consequences, Nous Y Sommes, Live Maquis GB (Les trois glorieuses) and the album titled: Zaiko Familia Dei

These albums are full of great sebens and have a very good sound.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2018, 00:14 by bencuri »

MwanaMokili #11 on: July 11, 2018, 00:53

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Thereafter we started seeing the same format from the likes of Arlus Mabele and Loketo, Kassav and other session musicians developing what was called internationally 'Soukouss'  ....

Quote
You mean to tell me Zaiko are the ones to blame for Kanda Bongo Man and his peers?? ;D



 ;D ;D ;D

Not really, but it is after the success of Nippon Bonzai that the international stations started paying attention to Lingala, and the short mostly instrumental song ( With little or no message) but danceable tunes started getting airplay.

For a beginner of Zaiko, the journey can very long and the number of albume defintely more than 5.

My journey of Zaiko started with the 1976 Ghana Festival ( Zaiko Wa Wa Wa signature tune).

Another landmark point of the Group was the split that gave us Nkolo Mboka and Familia Dei...
Depending on the followers, there are those who prefer Nkolo Mboka and those who prefer Familia Dei, although I do not hear of Familia dei much nowadays.

Any news of Familia Dei branch of Zaiko will be welcome, but Nyoka Longo seems to be the last man standing of the Zaiko Clan.



mvulusi96 #12 on: July 11, 2018, 01:04

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Familia Dei doesn't exist since 1996 with Petit Poisson & Jimmy Yaba rejoining Zaiko Nkolo Mboka, Ilo Pablo stopping his music career, Lengi Lenga until his death trying to return to Zaiko but Nyoka Longo refusing and forming in 1998 along with Ben Nyamabo, Likinga, Djo Poster and the band Boom des As, in 1999 he sadly left us.

Wenge1995 #13 on: July 11, 2018, 01:37

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@mvulusi96

It seems as if Zaiko and Quartier Latin like to share artists; Deo Brando, Rocky Blanchard, Willy Bula, and Lola Muana.

As for Willy Bula, why would he depart from Zaiko during the production of Poison? I heard rumors that he wanted to be a solo artist, is that true? What made Deo Brando leave Zaiko, was Koffi offering better pay or was it because of a falling out?

And lastly, where is Rocky Blanchard settled these days? I hope he is well

mvulusi96 #14 on: July 11, 2018, 02:29

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@mvulusi96

It seems as if Zaiko and Quartier Latin like to share artists; Deo Brando, Rocky Blanchard, Willy Bula, and Lola Muana.

As for Willy Bula, why would he depart from Zaiko during the production of Poison? I heard rumors that he wanted to be a solo artist, is that true? What made Deo Brando leave Zaiko, was Koffi offering better pay or was it because of a falling out?

And lastly, where is Rocky Blanchard settled these days? I hope he is well

The most artists who went from Zaiko to QL and from QL to Zaiko took just avandatage of the beef Nyoka Longo had with Koffi and those of QL who joined Zaiko, were artists who Koffi didn't need anymore and they saw Zaiko as only band to join which a had little fame, since that they know that it would be easy to join Wenge or in Paris based Viva La Musica.

Bro if Willy wanted to be a solo artist then he would already have released a solo album, because back in those days it was easy to get a recordlabel to record an album even if he didn't had a good cv. He just left because he wanted to settle in Europe and with Zaiko coming in Europe in 1999, he took finally his chance after not being there for 5 years. Its very sad because he had an excellent song in the album called Revelation, which was seen as the best rumba of the album. Nyoka Longo was very angry when Willy Bula ran away in Europe and decided to skip Revelation from the listrack of the album on the second pressing. It very rare to see a cd with the song Revelation on that disc.



from 1:09:43 min, I don't know why the uploader named the title Mbombo 'A Mbwa with Lutchiana Mobulu as author. While Lutchiana is a famous soukous-artist and was never a member of Zaiko and the song title was Revelation. My cousin had that cd and I remember that Willy Bula was credited as author of the song.


Lola Muana left QL in 2003 and started his solo career with him releasing his solo album Affaire Silivi. Then when conflicts started between Koffi Olomide & Werrason about Ferre, they tried to lure Fally in Maison Mere, but they failed and also Jordan Kusa, but he was eager to record in solo album '7 Ans de Vache Maigre', which he would name later Danger de Mort to piss Koffi off. So because of that they decided to recruit Lola Muana, he was accepted by the fans of La Zamba Playa after that test, but he didn't join on the end because of Kakol who has the last word in Maison Mere since the creation Les Marquis. Then after he was at home for months without work with then meeting Oncle Bapuis who rejoined Zaiko and formed in Kinshasa 'Les Gunners de Zaiko' who were young artists recruiting in Kinshasa who were waiting for the return of Nyoka Longo, was could not return on the moment to Europe since 2002 for that process about the ngulu-affaire with Belgian justice. Bapuis Muaka tried to convice Lola Muana to join Zaiko, but he kept refusing, since that Zaiko is seen as a band for old people and at that time they didn't got that hype anymore. But on the end he accepted the offer and went to Europe to join the band. In 2009 returned to Kinshasa with Nyoka Longo, Shulay and Doudou Adoula. He contributed alot to the reconstruction of Zaiko in Kinshasa and was the guy who made them get a contract Primus, but didn't get anything from Nyoka Longo, which pissed him off and made him decided the band along with Shulay, but he rejoined the band again in 2012.

With Quartier Latin a having alot succes in Kinshasa after that Bercy-show and musicians having those expensive cars, made musicians of other bands who didn't had that system of buying their musicians cars after a Europe-tour dream (Zaiko, Nouvelle Ecriture & Victoria Eleison) with also the project to perform at Parc des Princes. Then there was a female dancer of Zaiko who decided to join Quartier Latin after being suspended. Her name was Japonaise if I remember, but I can be wrong. Then Koffi asked him if there are others musicians of Zaiko who wanted to join Quartier Latin with her citting some names and them being solicited. Which made Deo Brondo join Zaiko, who was not happy the way he was paid, after that Koffi tried to get Daniel 6000 (who was then seen as the best solist of DR Congo, due to those VHS and cassettes who were sold in Matonge/Kasa Vubu) which created alot polemic. With both bands attacking each other on tv and Nyoka Longo & Koffi Olomide being invited by the minister of culture to stop their polemic. There was a video about that on youtube with Daniel 6000 & Nyoka Longo talking on Adamo's channel, but Adamo deleted that channel.

Rockly Blanchard is still in Quartier Latin. You already asked it 3 times lol.