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Cameroon Saxophonist Manu Dibango Dies From Coronavirus

Cameroon-born singer and saxophone player Manu Dibango has died from coronavirus infection, according to a statement on his official Facebook page on Tuesday.


The 86-year-old Cameroonian, best known for the 1972 hit “Soul Makossa”, is one of the first worldwide stars to die as a result of COVID-19.

Dear family, dear friends, dear fans,
A voice raises from far away. It is with deep sadness that we announce to you the loss of Manu Dibango, our Papy Groove, who passed away on 24th of March 2020, at 86 years old, further to covid 19. His funeral service will be held in strict privacy, and a tribute to his memory will be organized when possible.

Dibango was a member of the seminal Congolese rumba group, African Jazz, and has collaborated with many other musicians, including Fania All-Stars, Fela Kuti, Herbie Hancock, Bill Laswell, Bernie Worrell, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, King Sunny Adé, Don Cherry, and Sly and Robbie.

His song, “Reggae Makossa”, is featured on the soundtrack to the 2006 video game Scarface: The World Is Yours. In August 2009, he played the closing concert at the revived Brecon Jazz Festival. In July 2014, he made an 80th-anniversary concert at Olympia, France which was broadcast by TV5Monde.

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