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Congolese musician Papa Wemba has died

Congolese music legend Papa Wemba, one of Africa’s most popular singers, has died after collapsing during a concert in Abidjan, Ivory Coast on April 24.

The 66-year-old singer was headlining the Femua festival of urban music in Abidjan, Ivory Coast and was the latest performer to go on stage around 5 AM. It’s halfway through his set that the singer slumped on the floor after collapsing. Video footage showed musicians and backing singers running to his aid not really knowing what was happening. The singer was taken to a nearby clinic but could not be resuscitated.

A leading figure of african music, he became one of the founding fathers of congolese rumba when he created his famous label Viva La Musica in 1977 in DR Congo, his native country. Known around the globe as the king of Congolese rumba, he gained global success when he signed on Peter Gabriel’s label and toured with Stevie Wonder. He is also known for discovering new artist such as Koffi Olomide.

The cause of his death has yet to be determined.

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