Lubumbashi Stars

Lubumbashi Stars, unlike the countless bands based either in Kinshasa or in Europe, is a band formed in the second city of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Lubumbashi. A city of 1.8 million inhabitants, located in the very South East of the Democratic Republic of Congo, not far from the Zambian border, has always been of great geo-political and economic importance, notably because of the mining industry.

At some point, Lubumbashi Stars left their country for Zambia, and seemingly they stayed there for 3 years before moving on. In the mid-90s they were based in Zimbabwe. They made a rougher and more up-tempo blend of soukous, still referred to as rumba in most surrounding countries, where they were quite popular. They sing both in Lingala and in Swahili, and also musically, there are influences from Zimbabwe, Zambia, Kenya and Tanzania.

Unfortunately, the band disintegrated after the defection of several members. For instance, singer Dody Kaninda Mbala teamed up with Wellington 'Bitumba' Maruta. Lubumbashi Stars made three albums, all three are great dance albums, that are nowadays difficult to find.

Lubumbashi Stars
Lubumbashi Stars  

• Musicians on 'Paka uni bebe':
Dody Kaninda Mbala vocals
Kalasa Lego vocals
Malaïka Kayeye vocals
Kapia Mwenda vocals
Marobex Kishiwada solo & acc. guitar
Alidjo Amisi bass
James Ekomoda percussion
Jeannot Murna percussion
Yav Ditend drums, keyboards
Other members at some point in time:
Jonasi Kasamba (left to join Alick Macheso)
• Musicians on 'S.O.S. Passe Partout':
Dody Kaninda Mbala vocals
Kayeye Akey 'Malaïka' vocals
Kapya Mwenda Kazadi vocals
Alfred Chisala solo guitar
Kabulo Kishiwada 'Marobex' solo & acc. guitar
Alidjo Amisi bass
Frank Mwalu Nyembo drums/programming - † 2008 (kidney failure)
Peter Nsofwa Muma percussion
James Mwewa '4x4 Aluma le Colonel' congas
Denis Sandjohn, Moses Kabubi keyboards
Kashinda Kalambay 'le poids lourd du Zaire' animations

Formed: 1978, in Lubumbashi
Style: Modern Congolese music / soukous


Title Year Label Remarks
As de coeur 1995 ACP 08698-2
S.O.S. Passe Partout 1994 Sonodisc MC 70707 CD / LP / MC
Paka uni bebe [n.d.] LUM 001 LP

Page added February 1998