What you need to know:
- Lando (Ephantus Lando) said the two new tracks, “Legeza” and “Ajali Jogoo Road”, were the culmination of almost two months of preparations.
- Notably, the melody of the song is borrowed from the legendary Congolese maestro Franco Luambo Makiadi’s “12,600 letters” hit song.
Budding Nairobi-based rhumba musician Papa Lando, among those fusing Kenyan and Congolese rhumba, is back with two new tracks.
Speaking to the Nation earlier this week Lando (Ephantus Lando) said the two new tracks, “Legeza” and “Ajali Jogoo Road”, were the culmination of almost two months of preparations.
"Though having been kept off live performances due to the Covid-19 pandemic restrictions, I kept up my tempo with rhumba music rehearsals alongside my colleagues to produce the two new songs,” he said.
The 37- year- old pointed out that “Ajali Jogoo Road” is a song sensitising the public of the dangers of drink driving particularly during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Notably, the melody of the song is borrowed from the legendary Congolese maestro Franco Luambo Makiadi’s “12,600 letters” hit song.
Franco has been one of Papa Lando’s major sources of musical inspiration. Like he earlier pointed out, his father kept a large collection of some of the rhumba classics.
On the forthcoming album, Papa Lando has dedicated a single to his 10-year-old daughter Cece Lando, who already appears upbeat about her father's musical moves.
Some of the collections his father kept, he recalled, were by legendary Congolese musicians Franco Luambo Makiadi, Tabu Ley Rochereau, Grand Kalle (Joseph Kabeselleh), Dr Nico Kasanda, Tanzanians Simba Wanyika, Mbaraka Mwinshehe and Benga icon DO Owino Misiani.
But as a practising artiste Lando got inspired by the third generation of rhumba musicians, among them Koffi Olomide, Werrason, JB Mpiana, Ferre Gola , Fally Ipupa and Lokua Kanza.
The influence has also been in terms of stage attire for Lando, who lately appears more trendy.
Back home in Kenya, he says, he has been inspired by artistes including Sauti Sol, Kidum and Eric Wainaina.
In the second new song, “Legeza”, Lando has blended urban rhumba with beats from Lagos in Nigeria, Dar-es-Salaam and Nairobi, giving the song an international appeal.
“It was my intention to reach out to fans across East and West Africa through the beats and melody,” he said.
Later in December, he plans to release “Mbogi Ya Rhumba” which will feature artistes such as Gabu (P-Unit) Barna from Tanzania, Darzee Kalend and Barcelone (Bilenge Musica Du Congo).
“It has been my ambition to incorporate both local and foreign artistes in my recordings to capture that international appeal,” he said.
Another popular song by Lando is “Pesa ni Maua”, inspired by the legendary Simba Wanyika hit song “Shilingi yaua tena ni maua”.
Notably, the Simba Wanyika song, featuring brothers Wilson Peter and George Peter Kinyonga, was very popular in terms of radio and club play.
Like most other artistes, Lando is optimistic about the future of live performances as countries tackle the pandemic.
In the meantime, he continues to interact with his fans online using various platforms - Instagram: papalndo254, YouTube: papa lando, Facebook: Papa Lando, Tiktok: papalando254 and Twitter: @papalando254.