Monday, 20 October 2008

Kofi Olomide admits: “When one proposes money for a libanga to me (a dedication), I take”

In a radio debate which often remained in the periphery for lack of relevant questions of the listeners, “the Beautiful Time” of César Ngadi of last Saturday October 11 on Radio Mangembo will have at least made it possible to the music lovers to be fixed on the question of the dedications (mabanga) by Kofi Olomide. For the star Congolese, the litany of names which invade the Congolese song in the form of dedications is an important source of revenue complementary for the musicians.
The singer assumed it with a sincerity not-pretence while adding that he also makes free dedications for certain friends, including some already deceased as in his last album.

In promotion for her album at “Céza-Céza”, Kofi Olomide marked of her print a very interactive emission flooded by waves of questions which strongly reduced those, prepared, of the organizer. The interventions of the listeners, indeed, made it possible to the singer to thread the costume of misunderstood and of badly-liked that it arises each time for the needs for marketing. Thus when a listener challenges it of the United States on her clips with hardly equipped dancers, the owner of the Latin Quarter asserts “his” universality and is astonished that the same lawsuit with Madonna is not made when it adopts suggestive attitudes on images diffused on Western TVS: “I do not make the music for the Congoleses, moreover I do not even want that one catalogues me as Congolese artist, I am a singer and that is all! If these behaviours shock you, it is not me which manufactures them and they are on sale free”.

But just afterwards, when another listener challenges him on these mabanga which pollutes his songs, Kofi asserts the cultural exception by evoking our particularisms which should be safeguarded: “When our moms dance, one sees people coming to give them banknotes into the bras! Similar for the musicians at the time of taken care or tribal festivals”. The singer evokes also another argument, food that one: “When you look at the small pocket of an album of Michael Jackson behind, you will find an advertizing of Pepsi. As for us, we do not have a sponsor and the mabanga enable us to garner complementary receipts. When one proposes 5.000 euros for a dedication to me, you want me to refuse? Not, I take them”. And to say that the Skol beer thought naively that it was the sponsor of Kofi and her orchestra Latin Quarter…

Olomide in perpetual contradiction
Alas, it was not the only time that the singer retracted. When a listener of Finland challenged it on his social and economic investment in comparison with Youssou Ndour, Kofi refuted the comparison while supporting that the Senegalese singer “has his entries in particular near the European media which do not express the same interest” for him. Later, when I dare one second question in French, Kofi requires that it be posed in lingala because he is “Congolese singer, proud of its language, wants to address itself only to its compatriots and card-indexes itself some that the foreigners follow the emission and do not include/understand its remarks”. Curious, because earlier, he asked that one not regard it as a Congolese singer, but as very short singer making music for all nationalities.

Besides, Kofi Olomide was cordial, accessible, facetious, pleasing and unfortunately very off-hand with the wire of the emission. Hat low also with César Ngadi which made crowned progress in the presentation even if, with OJ Tshimbalanga however methodical, they were one moment overflowed by the surge of the phone calls which arrived at the same time on the fixed telephone of the studio, a cellphone and by Internet on Skype.

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