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Life is moving fast: the blog is not abandoned, it is just …

I will let you know what it is when I figure it out.

In the meantime, a couple of quick notes.

I just picked up Orchestra Les Mangelepa’s 1985 pre-deportation album, Madina.

Orchestra Les Mangelepa - Madina - ASLP413

Not sure who the producer was on this but this particular album is the work of a production maestro. ‘Maestro’ is a word that I rarely use people so take me seriously.

For your listening pleasure, one track off the 12′, Madina, the title track which is 8 minutes of sound roller coaster.

This track has 2 alternating rhythm sections, a “High-life” feel to it with a complex guitar/drum/trumpet/sax interplay and an interlude that starts at about 3:03 that my friend Joe told me “absolutely requires seat belts”.

And the kicker.

They sing in English so (almost) everyone can enjoy the vocals on this.

East African rhumba circa 1970/1980Orchestra Les Mangelepa – Madina

Next up, this little gem.

Doonesbury: On Obama and his Kenyan followingDoonesbury: On Obama and his Kenyan following

And, currently on heavy rotation at Casa Ntwiga

Classic Grooves #6 from Spirit of House. A track listing can be found here.

Pick it up here.

Vocal Housespirit of house.org – Classic Grooves #6

An important note: don’t let the name of the website fool you. This is what Kenyans of my generation call “Soul” – if you are a fan of Atlantic Star, Mac Band, Cameo and groups who played that type of sound, this is exactly it.

The mix is DEFINITELY worth the download and listen.

Finally, if you are new to the site or trying to figure out how to do something on the site, please read this.

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19 Responses

  1. Mutunga says:


    Thanks for the Mangelepa track. It’s always great to hear this group. This is the first time I’ve heard them singing in English. All things considered, I’d rather they stuck to Lingala.

    Wacha wewe!

    The only reason you say that is because you understand lingala and the rest of us don’t!


    This track is 110% killer!


  2. Mutunga says:


    Now that we have a photo on this site, am I right in saying that Captain Bwamy Wa Lumona is the bearded guy on the far right?

  3. Esororo says:

    I second Mutunga, maybe Swahili and lingala will do for this guys.

  4. joji says:

    Ingawa mimi mzungu nawaunga mkono Mutunga na Esororo : kweli wakitumia Kiswahili au hasa Lingala muziki wao mtamu zaidi …

  5. kabuga says:


    You are right. That is Les captain Bwami. This track did not thrill me too much back then 1984/1985.

    BTW: Check on what i am offering at magomayetu.blogspot.com.

    Anyone with safari ya mangelepa? Those sax were killers!

  6. Dennis says:

    May someone post an English translation for
    Maria Tebbo,by Sam Mangwana and Weekend by Afro 70 Band, please. Every week I wonder what those non-English words means.

  7. Steve says:

    It seems that the naysayers are out in force on this one


    It still gets my vote though. I still absolutely think this track is the business. Can I get a witness?

    – Steve

  8. Steve says:

    It seems that the naysayers are out in force on this one


    It still gets my vote though. I still absolutely think this track is the business. Can I get a witness?

    – Steve

  9. Lydia says:

    Steve, I have to join the naysayers in this one. The English just doesn’t do it for me, I tried it lakini “haingii hata kidogo” :-). Lingala or Kiswahili would get my vote.

  10. Lydia says:

    @ Kabuga

    Great job on your site! I will definetly be a frequest visitor.

  11. Mutunga says:


    Me too!

  12. Steve says:


    The naysayers are winning.

    An alternative for you then, Dracula, a Lingala track from Les Mangelepa can be found over at Likembe. John posted this for Halloween on October 31st.

    – Steve

  13. Joe says:

    We all have differing opinions, and get from music different emotional responses. And that’s a good thing. It reminds me of a children’s parable about 5 blind men and an elephant; each experiences something different depending on his approach to the beast. As long as we respect one another’s opinion, things work…

  14. Joe says:


    @Steve, I will bear witness.

    @Kabuga, I believe I have Safari Ya…. Give me a day or to to check.

  15. samuel (Samwiri) says:

    great tune. Whle I am here, mai also say, I have just found Maroon Commandos – Ni wasi Ni wasi – Charonyi which has to be one of my childhood best tunes. I was even doing the moves I used to do with my brohters and sisiters on the veranda when it was balsting out of Radio uganda. Cheza muzki muzito bwana!

  16. kabuga says:

    Anyone out there with those fabulous songs done by baba Gaston, that addressed the problem of drunkardness?

    Also anyone with sababu yako and Tobias Oduor both done by sauti ya simba aka Lessa Lassan?

  17. Daniel says:

    As I scrolled through the archives, I came across “You can do it” by Slim Ali. Wow! That took me back to the Lenana School days when Slim and the Hodi Boys were blowing up on VOK. I was really impressed with the quality and arrangement of the song even by 1980 standards. He was really a pioneer. I hope he’s still alive today to take advantage of new technology and put his touch on another funky dance song.

    Thanks all, for your contributions to the treasure trove that this blog site is. I have a pretty impressive collection that I never would have accumulated otherwise.

  18. askofu says:

    hi, Steve. you had been delivering the very very good and memorable old time. please i in very need of the song “mikolo mileki mingi by orchestra veve” it is a one of songs i realy like it to listen always,
    please find a wayto help me get it.

    by askofu
    Dar es salaam

  19. Mutunga says:


    I’m sure Steve must have posted Mikolo Mileki Mingi in the past but considering the astronomical dimensions of his music archives : ), I’ve made things easier for you by posting two versions of that wonderful track.
    Get a Cd-Quality version of the track at this link
    There’s one catch about the above version: it sounds complete, but if you remember the music from the original vinyl disc, you’ll agree that there is something missing in the mp3 file.
    I’ve dug into my not-too-vast archives and found an audio tape of Orchestre Vévés amazing piece and I’ve uploaded it for you at this location on the web. This version is a replica of the original vinyl disc, and it is complete. The only catch is that you’ll have to put up with the sound of wax!
    I’m glad to find somebody who loves Mikolo Mileki Mingi . This track taught to love music. I’m yet to find anyone who can match Verckys versatility on the Sax. Furahia

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