Congolese Rhumba Musician, General Defao Dies at 62

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Congolese Rhumba Star, Lulendo Matumona (aka General Defao) died on Monday, December 27, 2021, in Douala, Cameroon.

He was scheduled to give a private concert before he died.

Officials say he was seized with uneasiness in his room several hours before the show. He was almost in a coma for long hours until he was finally discovered late at night in a disturbing state.

He was immediately evacuated to Laquintinie hospital in Douala where he died on Monday evening.

Family and friends say his health was in decline although the exact cause of his death is not yet known.

Several Congolese artists including Fally Ipupa, Barbara Kanam, Ferre Gola have expressed their sadness at the death of the great singer.

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After more than 15 years of exile in Kenya, Defao made his big return to his country the DRC on August 4, 2019. One of his first gestures was to go to the Necropolis between Heaven and Earth to bow to the Graves of Papa Wemba, Tabu Ley, King Kester Emeneya, Madilu System, Pépé Kalle.

He made his last trip to West Africa a few weeks ago at Ouaga, Burkina, on the occasion of the ceremony of Kundé 2021.

Defao was born on December 31, 1959.

He entered the Congolese musical world in 1976 when he was only 17-years-old.

He quickly became famed for his beautiful voice, elegant look and for being a very good dancer despite his large frame.

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He joined the group Zaïko Langa Langa in 1981.

Sometime later, he joined another group Chok Stars between 1983 and 1991 before creating his own group, Big Star.


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