Tributes pour in for Congolese singer Saak Saakul Sinatra

Congolese singer Saak saakul Sinatra

Congolese singer Saak saakul Sinatra.

Photo credit: Pool

The Congolese music fraternity is in mourning again following the death of legendary singer and composer Saak Sakul in Paris, France last Sunday. 

This happened within less than a week after the death of his ÜS- based counterpart guitarist and composer Lokassa ya Mbongo. Both aged 80 have been kept off-stage due to long illness.

As for Saak “Sinatra” (Bonghat Sinuku Tshekabu Maximilien), he rose to fame back home in DR Congo in the late 1960s and early 1970s as a founding member of the Trio Madjesi group. This was alongside his counterparts Angolan Mario Matadidi “Buana Kitoko” and Marcel Loko Massengo "Djeskain".

The three were initially in 1969 with Orch Veve which was led by composer, arranger, producer, and saxophonist Verckys Kiamuangana. Mateta. Notably, they took part in recording some of the initial Orch Veve songs like Dynamite Verckys and Verckys in Paris.

However, the trio (Mario, Djeskain, and Sinatra) broke away as Trio Madjesi to be at the forefront of the Orch Sosoliso band.

As US-based Congolese music producer Lubangi Muniania of Tabilulu Productions recalled recently, Sinatra was a kingpin in stage shows by the group. 

“Most of us grew up listening and watching the amazing stage show of the TriP Madjesi group. ”, Lubangi said.

Notably, it was the Afro hairstyle, which made them appeal to a large audience in the 1970s. This according to Lubangi depicted the legendary James Brown’s influence on most of the popular bands in the Central African region.

Their music includes Congolese rhumba, Soukous blended with funk and jazz.

The group was famous for songs like Photo ya Madjesi, Feza, Luzolo and Camarade ekufaka. Mario and Loko Masengo are both living in France.

 Speaking to Saturday Nation yesterday Paris-based Congolese singer and composer Nyboma Mwandido said plans were underway to have Saakul’s body soon flown back to Kinshasa for burial.

“We are liaising with fellow musicians in Europe to have Saakul buried back home. This is in conjunction with government officials and others in Congo", he said.

 Similarly, Modero Mekanisi who was Lokassa’s counterpart in Tabu Ley Rochereau’s Afrisa International said arrangements were also underway to have his body flown back to Congo for burial. Modero now lives in Nashua, New Hampshire, USA alongside singer Wawali Bonane.

Elsewhere the Bilenge Musica band fraternity is also mourning singer Bobo Sukari, a founding member who collapsed and died earlier this week in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

Elsewhere, The Hornbill (opposite Fatima Behind Be Energy) at Ongata Rongai hosts tonight and every Saturday the ‘Saturday Hangout featuring the best of disco music with DJ Roq X and Emcee Gogo. Shows start at 6pm until dawn.

Elsewhere Club Legend also in Ongata Rongai presents Fusion Fridays every Friday hosted by Becky alongside DJs K- Plus, Rarescratch and K- Rich.