The 86-year-old Cameroonian Jaaz icon, best known for the 1972 hit ‘Soul Makossa’, “died early Tuesday morning in a hospital in Paris region,” said his music publisher Thierry Durepaire.
The message states, “His funeral service will be held in strict privacy, and a tribute to his memory will be organised when possible.”
Emmanuel N’Djoke Dibango was born on 12 December 1933, growing up in a strictly observant Protestant family.
Manu Dibango, the saxophonist was one of the pioneers of Afro-jazz and he also fused funk with traditional Cameroonian music.
His biggest hit was ‘Soul Makossa’, the B-side of a song to support the Cameroon football team in the African Cup of Nations but was picked up and popularised by New York DJs.
French Culture Minister Franck Riester also paid tribute to him on Twitter, “I don’t have the words to express all my sadness. The world of music has lost one of its legends, the generosity and talent of Manu Dibango knew no frontiers.”