The Guitar improvisations of Mwenda Jean Bosco

  • David Rycroft Lecturer in African Languages at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London
Keywords: Jean Bosco Mwenda, -1992, Guitarists -- Zaire


Mwenda Jean Boscos improvised guitar songsparticularly his Masangaare by this time widely known and appreciated. This has been due, initially, to the wide circulation of his records after he became one of Hugh Traceys discoveries and, as a direct result of this, to his popularity as a radio personality in Central and East Africa. This initial article has been confined to consideration of two of Boscos earliest recorded works, Masangaboth in its guitar-accompanied song version and as a guitar soloand Bombalaka, a guitar song. Attention will be paid to the guitar music rather than to the vocal line. A later article will provide transcriptions of ten more of his works, all of them guitar songs, and attempt a comparative treatment of his style.
How to Cite
Rycroft, D. “The Guitar Improvisations of Mwenda Jean Bosco”. African Music: Journal of the International Library of African Music, Vol. 2, no. 4, May 1961, pp. 81-98, doi: