Joe Chibangu the Ambassador
We are yet again greeted with the sad news of the passing of renowned artist Joe “Ambassador” Chibangu.
Joe, a talented producer who horned his skills at Mondo Music label
helped pioneer Zambia’s contemporary music that for the first time sharply departed from guitar based and decades old Kalindula music.
Together with Daddy Zemus, probably the earliest king of zam-ragga and another producer and singer, Mainza, Joe Chibangu charted this new but unknown path.
In 1999 Chairman of Rhodespark School, Director of Pageants Zambia, businessman and ambititous Zambian entreprenuer, Chisha Folotiya formed Mondo Music Corporation.
The label quickly signed new and unknown artists to drive this new genre in Zambia.
Mondo signed the kalifunku duo, Black Muntu, Jordan Katembula (JK), Mainza Chipenzi, Shatel, Chilu Lemba, Danny Kaya and the Tribal Cousins.
Mondo also repackaged old Kalindula favourite artists like PK Chishala.
Joe Chibangu was signed on as producer and musician.
Joe Chibangu went on to produce and sing hits after hits.
For whatever reasons, Mondo Music Corporation closed down.
Artists under the label attempted to survive and struggled re-invent themselves without the shelter, protection and provisions of Mondo.
Joe was among the artist that tried hard to find and survive without Mondo but also compete with hard hitting new and innovative talent that emerged after they had cleared the path.
It is therefore sad to hear that the talented musician, producer and singer had died after a music career spanning over 16years.
Chibangu was vocally talented and help shape and evolve the current zambeats genre to its internationally accepted level.
In recent times, Joe did collaborations and was featured on many songs by artists such as Petersen Zagaze, Exile, General Ozzy, and others.
Being a background hand with artist, I cry for the music and artist industry in Zambia.
Atleast a fresh step was taken by President Edgar Lungu who created the Ministry of Tourism and Arts with the arm of Art, with a specific mandate to develop and accommodate artists, and make their creative industry attractive and beneficial both to the country and to the artist.
This was just the first step…Let’s do more.
Its there fore hard to learn of the death of Joe.
Rest in Eternal Peace Joe.