List of top 10 greatest African musicians of all time.There are many music legends in Africa who are not forgotten for their massive contributions to the African music industry. These legends are very talented, famous, influential and have made a name for themselves in the world.
Of course, it's not that easy to get into the "greatest of all time" category. Undoubtedly there are many talented musicians in Africa who are doing very well themselves. Yet some are indeed legends and far ahead of many others. A handful of these legends have a reputation for being pioneers of various African music genres. These people have done much to ensure that Africa can boast of its own indigenous sounds. From different African countries, speaking different African languages and singing different genres of music, we bring you the most famous African musicians of all time
Top 10 Greatest African Musicians of All Time
Where did you grow up?
The late Nigerian is well known in different parts of the world for different reasons. Fela is known for his high-octane performances, and interestingly, years after his death, his music is still many people's favorite.
Due to various factors, he is considered to be the greatest African artist who ever lived and has risen to the top of the list. Fela is quite talented and good at what he does. He can play various instruments very well and is a nice composer. If you're familiar with the genre of music known today as Afrobeat, you should know that he was the one who invented it.
Fela rose to fame in the 70's and although he mainly sings in Yoruba language and Pidgin English, he still has many fans in different parts of Africa. Furthermore, one of the outstanding things that shot up his popularity was the fact that before his death (he died of HIV) he was a political activist who did everything to keep the government of the time on its toes.
If you don't know Miriam Makeba, you should know Mama Africa. Well, the famous Mama Africa is Miriam Makeba, a South African not to be forgotten for the continent.
Miriam has been called the most famous artist the continent has produced. Of course, a Grammy Award winner isn't a minor musician. This is Mama Africa, she won the Grammy Award in her heyday on stage!
With her music, she primarily dealt with the socio-political plight of her compatriots during apartheid and remains one of the greatest of all time when it comes to African music.
Angelique Kidjo is next on the list, and she remains one of the finest the continent has produced when it comes to music. Of course, a woman who has won the Grammy Award twice is not just a musician, but a legend. This is her, she is an African music legend, one of the greatest of all time.
Angelique is from Benin and besides singing and writing songs, she is also an activist trying to give voice to the voiceless. She is versatile, has the ability to delight her fans and supporters.
Ladysmith Schwarzer Mambazo
Ladysmith Schwarzer Mambazo
This is a band from South Africa known for their outstanding musical talent. Here's a group that won the Grammy Award in their heyday and amassed tons of fans from different parts of the African continent. Known for their Isicathamiya and Mbube styles, they have worked hard to bring their own sound to Africa as well.
These guys rose to fame working with Paul Simon to produce Graceland and since then they've made sure they could capitalize on their success to build their careers. One impressive thing about them is that they are not only interested in signing and showcasing their singing skills, but also want to show the world what South Africa is all about.
Known as the Queen of African Pop and from South Africa, this woman has made a name for herself as one of the greatest musicians of all time to emerge from Africa. She was an outstanding pop singer whose story motivates other aspiring musicians.
Brenda was born in Langa, Cape Town, but left her homeland as a young teenager to pursue her passion for music. She owes her rise to the celebrity category in South Africa to the pop group Brenda & The Big Dudes. Her songs were accepted in South Africa, which increased her popularity beyond the region and introduced her to other music lovers from other parts of the world.
Ali Farka - The Best of Ali Farka
Ali Farka Toure is a pride of Mali and to date one of the finest talents Mali has produced. When it comes to music, he's pretty great. He sings well, speaks several languages and can play the guitar well.
Ali sings in a way that combines African American jazz with traditional Malian music. His exploits in the music industry have yet to be fully replicated in Mali, and he remains one of the greatest musicians of all time on the continent.
Youssou N dour is from Senegal and was born in Dakar (the country's capital). Youssou is a talented singer and composer whose amazing musical skills have attracted countless fans from different parts of the African continent.
The Senegalese have a reputation for being one of those who originated the famous musical style called Mbalax in Wolof. He's pretty good at mixing Mbalex with different languages and has become quite the legend when it comes to African music.
König Sunny Ade
Next on the list is King Sunny Ade from Nigeria. He is a super talented musician who was known for his juju music. He belongs to a royal family in the state of Ondo (in the south-west of the country) and is known for traveling with his band to different parts of the world to sing and perform. Because of this, he has been able to garner many fans and supporters and remains one of the best to come from the continent.
King Sunny Ade mainly sings in the Yoruba language (one of the main languages spoken by the Yoruba, especially in the southwestern part of the country). His songs are not only entertaining, but more importantly they are full of wisdom and ideas (which is another factor that has increased his fan base and exploits). Many of his songs, although he made them years ago, are still relevant today.
Next on the list of African music legends is Lucky Dube from South Africa. Before his death, he was able to establish himself as an excellent musician and sang the famous reggae music. Coming from Johannesburg, he got into the music industry as a teenager and joined a music band. Lucky produced various songs that were widely embraced by different people in different parts of Africa. Despite being late, he remains one of the greatest musicians the continent has produced.
E. T. Mensah
Rounding out the list is Emmanuel Tettey Mensah, the Ghanaian known for his impressive musical talent. The famous E.T. Renowned for his highlife music, Mensah has amassed countless fans and supporters from different parts of Africa.
Mensah was prominent in the '50s alongside his band The Tempos. He took his band to various African countries during this time and even entertained then-Ghanaian President Kwame Nkrumah.
In conclusion to the greatest African musicians of all time, these people have done a lot for themselves and for the African music space. They have made a name for themselves and have received multiple awards for their efforts. While aspiring musicians are doing very well today, we know they have to work extra hard to reach their level.
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