Kanyinda is an outstanding drummer and vocalist from Congo.
He plays djembe and congas and is the last surviving conga player
from the first generation of Congolese music. He was first taught
by his elder brother and then Kadima, the great master drummer
at the time.
After developing his musical skills Koko
joined several bands in his homeland and toured different African
countries. The musicians he joined with at that time included
Docteur Nico, Papa Noel and Sam
Mangwana and the bands Vox Africa and Cercul Jazz. In 1977 Koko
formed the Mangelepa Band in Kenya. This band was very successful
in East and southern Africa and they recorded 17 singles and
2 albums. Following the breakup of Mangelepa, Koko spent three
years with a soukous band, Kanzako, touring West Africa until
1985. He played with Samba Mapangala's Orchestre Virunga
in Nairobi, Kenya for two years. After that, Koko joined the
Real Sound of Africa touring Europe. He spent the year 1989
in Japan with a band called Piga Piga Stars.
In 1990 Koko decided to settle in Britain.
He taught drumming in Bristol and started the band Ngoma then
moved to London where he formed a group called Soukous Koumbele
in 1994. Over the years Koko has held drumming workshops in
many different countries including Finland, Spain, Italy, USA
and Australia through
WOMAD. He also works with
theatre-in-education companies such as
and Zuriya. In
October 2000 and
2002 Koko was on tour with Mose Fan
Fan's Somo Somo. He is also a member of The Master Drummers
of Africa, a most spectacular group whose tour in November 2000
took them to Southampton, Birmingham and the Royal Festival
Hall in London. They performed at the Royal Festival Hall again
in March 2002. Koko also frequently teamed up with Abdul
Tee-Jay for the band Palm Wine A-Go-Go.
Koko is very much in the limelight
on the African music scene as he performs with his band Soukous
many events in Britain: WOMAD, the African Music Festival 2004,
as well as on TV and Andy Kershaw's and Lucy Duran's radio programmes.
Listening to Koko drumming and singing
soukous melodies is bound to get you relaxed and dancing. Koko's
first CD, Sentimental, on Limpopo Records, is available