I think Mbilia Bel was one of the greatest voices out of Zaire. Her Song El Alambre was cleverly changed to Nakei Nairobi to please Daniel Arap Moi who had banned Congolese artists from performance in Kenya. Congolese music and its influence in East Africa,it was suffocating the local musicians and Joseph Mayanja alias Chameleon is credited for,’chasing away’ the Zaire music. Truthfully speaking, Congolese music is nice from Franco,Madilu system, Sister Yondo and Tshala Muana. The French colonies treasure culture and Fashion which is why Ammans and Mon Pere( my Father) localized as Mapeela found it easy to found it easy to found the Catholic Church because it adopted some of the African instruments in the worship. Items like drums,adungu (the harp) are always used,in that way, it seemed part of them as opposed to washing away their beliefs. Back to the song, the Nakei Nairobi version is the most popular.A good song is good no matter the language which is why I review this one in Lingala as I translate to English for context and understanding.
Na yoki Nzambe motindo ya mpasi, ba nyokoli yo.Yaka pembeni nazali se wayo ya motema ( I heard that you’ve been treated badly.Come closer,in my heart, I am still yours.) To vandi bo mwana, to meseni nga nayo, Dunia.(We grew up together,we are used to each others problems) To bandi bo mwana, ki moninga na miso ya mama.(We started our friendship since childhood,under the eyes of mother.) Ezali mabe nayoka okomi na pasi naza te.(It is inappropriate for me to hear that you are suffering in my absence) Na koya na kenya na ya ko zwa yo tozonga na Kinshasa.(I will come to Kenya to get you and bring you back to Kinshasa) Ya Elodie, mapasa,lokumu ya famille o ti wapi?(Big sister Elodie, twin sister,why have you lowered your standard?) Heavens bless M’Bilia Bel the perfect Songstress of our days. Always refreshing to listen to Nakei Nairobi This is perhaps why I am the old man, when it comes to music, it’s oldies,old skool and zouk not modern bubble music.