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Ricardo Lemvo

Ricardo was born in Democratic Republic of Congo, but his grandfathers were born in São Salvador, northern Angola so he has a strong connection with that area and wrote a song about it. Growing up next to a bar in Kinshasa, the popular Congolese rumba and Cuban music were part and parcel of Ricardo's everyday life and at age 8 he decided he'd like to be a singer but he had to keep that desire a secret for some years.
Ricardo attended boarding school in Gombe Matadi, away from the distractions of the city. However during the school vacations he listened avidly to his cousin's Cuban record collection. The emotions and rhythms of this music touched him strongly although he didn't understand the words.
During another school vacation another cousin helped Ricardo get a chance to sing in a young band called Mira Mira
In 1972 Ricardo went to study political science in USA where his father was living. Ricardo's passion for Cuban music continued and he also loved Mexican rancheras and mariachi. In the 1980s Ricardo enjoyed the salsa scene in Los Angeles: he made friends with Niño Jesus from Orquestra Versailles who plays tres and flute and who later helped in the musical arrangements on the album Tata Masamba.
Ricardo formed the highly talented and dynamic band Makina Loca in Los Angeles in 1990 - in Kikongo the name of the band translates as Dancing in a Trance whereas in Spanish and Portuguese it means Crazy Machine! His aim was to fuse the common roots of Congolese rumba and Cuban son montuno, describing the result as a mosaic of sounds. At one time Ricardo