Legendary rhumba guitarist Gege Mangaya mourned

Gege Yoka Mangaya

Congolese guitarist the late Gege Yoka Mangaya.

Photo credit: Courtesy

It was sad week for Rhumba fans following the death of guitarist Gege Yoka Mangaya who died on Wednesday in Kinshasa.

Gege, who succumbed to a long ailment at his home, was among the few survivors of Franco's TP OK Jazz band.

After leaving TP OK Jazz, Gege had brief stints with various groups in Kinshasa before joining Zaiko Langa Langa under the leadership of veteran singer and composer Nyoka Longo.

Speaking  to Saturday Nation on Friday, Gege's former colleague, Lofombo Gode said the guitarist died at his Matonge home in Kinshasa.

“We are awaiting details of the funeral arrangements which are being planned by his family members and fellow musicians," Lofombo said.

Prior to his death, Gege had taken a break from music for two years due to ill health.

Kenyans fans of the Zaiko Langa Langa will recall Gege was in the band that toured the country in 1996.

It was also during that time that Gege played the rhythm guitar on Zaiko's popular Ävis De Recherche album which was released in 1995. The album featured songs like  Ëgide, Dede Sur Mesure and Zekira.

During the recording of the album, Gege played alongside the likes of guitarists Roxy Tshimpaka, Baroza, Uncle Bapius and vocalists Malage Lugendo and Nyoka Longo.

While this was one of Zaiko's most popular albums, Gege is best remembered for his stint with the star-studded TP OK Jazz between 1974 and 1988, a year before Franco's death.

Here he played alongside other great guitarists in the group like Mpudi Decca, Lutumba Simaro Masiya, Gerry Dialungana, Nedule Papa Noel, Michelino Mavatiku and Makos Kindudi.

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