[APWW #389] [Originally aired 2002]
Congo has always played an oversize role in entertaining dance lovers on the continent and beyond--Franco, Tabu Ley, Doctor Nico, Zaiko Langa Langa, Papa Wemba, Pepe Kalle, and others. We start in pre-independence Congo with the beloved "Papa" Wendo Kolossoy (RIP), the grandfather of rumba, as he talks with us at his home in Kinshasa. We talk to the man and listen in on a recording session. After sitting out most of the 3-decade Mobutu era, Wendo put together a band of veterans with stories to tell, and sweet melodies and rhythms to share. We also talk with the legendary singer and composer Simaro Lutumba who sat at the right hand of Franco. We catch Simaro rehearsing his band, Bana OK. We also check in with dueling superstars Werrason and JB Mpiana.