KIZOMBA ? What ? .. This is not Kizomba !!?

… But it sound like that,

I can dance on it in the same way as I’m doing in Kizomba. Why this is not Kizomba ?!

This was just a joke !! I’m gonna explain you why.

I’m coming from a completely different music background; Since I’m 13 I started to listen the great rock band from the sixties / seventies such Deep purple, Led Zeppelin, Santana ( that’s why maybe I liked afterwards the latin/african rhythm ) and on top of all of them, Pink Floyd ( which they are well known to be really open minded and they always liked to experiment ). Definitely music that has nothing in common with African or traditional music, neither with Kizomba or Semba.

When I grew up I opened my music tastes to other kind of music and gender going through Electronic, minimal but also orchestral, new age, blues and so on. Still no trace of Kizomba or such things like that.

Was, If I remember well, the 1998 when a coworker brought me a CD of CESARIA EVORA telling me, “you should try to listen this”. So ! I went home and I started to listen that music so sad and with that kind of Afro/ carribean flavour that was completely new for me. I didn’t even know what kind of music was; my co-worker sold me like ” Fado from capo verde” and I believed him for long. I don’t know what make me felt in love for that music, maybe because it was so melancholic and sometimes on the opposite had that kind of happy flavour of the carribean , keeping most of the time the harmony in Minor ( I always loved Minor Chords 😀 )

CESARIA EVORA – The queen of Morna and Coladeira

Going forward a lot of years after, when I listened for the first time KIZOMBA and SEMBA was like a BOOM !! …  I thought WOW …. is there a dance ( and actually a really nice dance ) to step on the music I listened and liked for years ? I want to learn this dance. Immediately I started to catalogue that capverdian music as Kizomba. The rhythm is the same, the flavour too, you can actually step on it and it fit almost perfectly…. so What’s wrong ?

That capverdian music is not Kizomba but it’s mostly knows as Coladeira ( the faster songs ) or Morna ( the sad and slow songs ). Also when I also started to listen ZOUK ( was in France the first time ) ” I thought this is also Kizomba ”  But not …. this was another kind of music too.

What I figured out during these years is how Kizomba is kind of gender what you cannot really close with well defined boarders. There’s been so many influences that built what we call now Kizomba and it’s still like a baby which is  growing and changing under our eyes. That’s why from my point of view we shouldn’t be “scared” or “against” the new modern versions of Kizomba, Kizomba fusion or Urban kiz.

Let’s do an Example comparing 2 different gender like Coladeira and Semba.






Can you recognise any affinity ? … the harmony ? chord progression ? the singer part ?.   It’s clear that there is a connection in between and not only between Cabo verde but also with many other countries and states.

Again another Example :

THIS IS GUMBE’ ( from Guinea Bissau )

THIS IS MARRABENTA ( From Mozambique )

THIS IS CARRIBEAN ZOUK  ( how many times did you hear this song in the KIZOMBA parties ? )

Anything Familiar ?? The Rhythm ?   The Flavour ? …. Try to use the Kizomba Steps on these songs and it will fit perfectly.

Kizomba actually is a full mixture of tons of music influences and it was created because people from the French Carribean travelled to Angola and they started to play their music “ZOUK” while the Angolan people were playing their traditional music “SEMBA”. When these guys started to play together something new was born and it’s what now we call KIZOMBA, but as you can see you can find traces of “kizomba”( or better you can find traces of a lot of traditional musics from other countries in Kizomba )  in a lot of style coming from other country like Cabo Verde, Guine bissau, Mozambique etc etc and when you are able to recognize the connecting wire between the populations and the countries everything became clear and nice. After all we are part of one unique big planet where everything is connected and shared.

Since I was a young boy I never liked to put the things in boxes and categories, because the progress and evolution is part of our life and thanks God we can change. Evolution is everywhere, music is a good example because every style we can listen today was created many years ago thanks to pioneers who decided to break the rules and mix things together to create something new. Art is another example where painters of the past ( like Van Gogh for example ) began a progress in his way of painting mixing a lot of tecniques, feelings and ideas.

I’m not scared about evolution, I’m scared to stay stucked and not evolve. This doesn’t mean don’t have respect for the history, tradition etc etc… This means learning from the past to create our present and future.

Thanks god the earth is still spinning and the world is still changing.



Leave your thought