Lola Djangi Chécain about "Toboyana Kaka"

Interview with Lola Djangi 'Chécain' (Brussels, July 8, 1991)

Lola Djangi (LD), Yuma Michel Sax (MS), Aboubacar Siddikh (AS), Stefan Worldservice (SW)

LD: I composed this in Tanzania. When Franco was alive, we travelled to Tanzania, a tour, and that's where I composed this.

AS: And the words?

LD: "You reject me because of him. Forget about me for ever." Wait. <rewinds cassette> "Reject me because of him. Forget about me forever. Tear up all the letters I have written you. You'll give me back my photos" You see, a woman has let me down, so I am angry. That's the problem... She has gone off with another man.

"My name should disappear from your mind. You have squandered the trust I gave you." / "You have sent me people to tell me you don't love me anymore. They came and told me this in front of everybody." / "Remove my name from your heart. One should not talk of private (secret) matters in front of everybody."/ "The pain you caused me I'll never forget."

It's repeated again.

AS: That's Sam, Josky, you - and Boyibanda...?

LD: Yes.

AS: ...or just the three?

LD: The three. Ehm, Sam, Josky and me.

MS: Did the woman give you back the photos?

LD: She didn't want to give me back my photos. I wanted her to give me back the photos, because she went off with another man. So I too was angry.

SW: One can lose a lot of things this way. And if it's just photos, that's easy.

<LD starts coughing>

AS: Okay?

LD: Okay.

"She shouldn't ridicule me. This happens in the whole world. You can even marry an old man, or old woman. That's life."

AS: And now there are four, right?

LD: Yes, four.

AS: Boyibanda has joined in. Or not?

<MS coughs vigorously>

SW: How are you going to play the sax like that?

AS: That's why the Dutch don't smoke pure.

LD: Pure is good, we like smoking pure.

AS: But now Boyibanda is singing too?

LD: Yes. It's Boyibanda and me, we reply, and Sam and Josky are doing the solo.

AS: This is a great track. Very good.

LD: In any case, Franco plays very well, - before. In this song Franco played very well.

SW: Before?

LD: Yes, before.

AS: <searching through his notes> "Lukika" too, and ... this. No. This, "Baninga Tokola Balingaka Ngai Te", he plays very well, very well. Do you remember this? Because I know this always [i.e. just by seeing the title]. But for you it's 16 years ago...

LD: Sure. But I don't have the tape of this. <inaudible> Can I get this at Musicanova?

AS: No. Not this. I don't have the record, but the.... <shows sleeve> So. This is how it is in Kenya: "In Memoriam". There are ten volumes, and this is volume 9. "Assitou", "Zando", "Bana Brekete", "Lukika" and "Todutaka Kaka". But the composers are not mentioned.

LD: You see? That's Tanzania?

AS: Kenya. The photo is also Kenya, I think [correctly]. It's not a good photo. The records are well-made. The records are very well-made. But the composers are not on the record. Nothing. And I think the composers.. I don't think they gave the composers any money. I don't know...

LD: Nothing.

AS: There are two by you here.

That ["Bodutaka"] is by Simaro, and that ["Ledi"] by Youlou?

LD: <nods> All this, I haven't even received a cent. Nothing. Everything you are showing me. Nothing. All these songs, all these records. I didn't get a thing. Not even a penny. And I say this in front of him (MS).

AS: Why? Was it Franco?

LD: It was Franco. I didn't get a thing. Nothing. Zero.

AS: That's not good, isn't it?

LD: We leave it all to the Lord. I didn't get a thing. Nothing. Nothing, not even 100 francs.