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Manecas Costa and the gumbe rhythm

Lucy Duran tells the story of Manecas Costa, whose album was the first recorded in Guinea-Bissau. She also visits Cacheu, home of the once banned gumbe rhythm.

In 2002 Radio 3's Late Junction label transported a recording studio to Guinea-Bissau, one of the most inaccessible of west African countries, to make the international debut album of one of Africa's rising stars - Manecas Costa. It was the first album ever recorded in the country and marked Costa's return to his homeland after years living in Lisbon.

Lucy Duran tells the story of the making of the CD and visits Cacheu, the home of Guinea-Bissau's traditional gumbe rhythm, once banned by the Portuguese colonists as being subversive.

Available now

1 hour

Last on

Sat 3 May 2003 13:00

Music and featured items

  • Arriving with Manecas Costa.

    Lucy arrives in Guinea-Bissau with its best known musician, Manecas Costa.

    Duration: 04:17

  • Music Played

    • Manecas Costa

      Paraiso di Gumbe

  • Jerry Boyd interview.

    Co-producer, Jerry Boyd talks about the challenges of building a studio in Guinea-Bissau.

    Duration: 06:42

  • Music Played

    • Manecas Costa


  • Gumbe music.

    Lucy talks about Gumbe music, sung in Criolu, the local language of Guinea-Bissau.

    Duration: 06:10

  • Music Played

    • Cacheu villagers

      Cacheu Gumbe

    • Cacheu villagers

      Nursery song

    • Manecas Costa

      Nha Mame (acoustic)

  • Manecas Costa in Cacheu.

    Manecas Costa in Cacheu goes to the house where he was born and sings there.

    Duration: 07:28

  • Radio Bombolon.

    Lucy with Angelo Regala, head of Guinea-Bissau’s most outspoken radio station.

    Duration: 06:34

  • Music Played

    • Manecas Costa and his sister

      Early Recording (partially under speech)

    • Zé Carlos

      protest song

  • “Djunda Djunda”.

    We hear Manecas Costa’s famous song “Djunda Djunda”.

    Duration: 06:14

  • Music Played

    • Manecas Costa

      Djunda Djunda

  • Doing a take of “Osokari”.

    Doing a take of “Osokari”, a song calling the healer-diviner to pray for the country.

    Duration: 03:11

  • Music Played

    • Manecas Costa


  • The “Manjako ladies”.

    Lucy and Manecas on a canoe with the “Manjako ladies”.

    Duration: 04:43

  • Music Played

    • Manecas Costa and the Manjako women

      Rehearsing Nha Terra (Under speech)

    • Manecas Costa

      Nha Terra

    • Manecas Costa

      Paraiso di Gumbe (acoustic)

  • The Criolu language

    Lucy speaks to Manecas about the Criolu language and why he prefers to sing in Criolu.

    Duration: 04:40

  • Jerry Boyd talks about recording.

    Jerry Boyd talks about the difference between recording in London and in Guinea-Bissau.

    Duration: 04:36

  • Music Played

    • Manecas Costa

      Paraiso di Gumbe


  • Sat 3 May 2003 13:00

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