Although "Mbube" made Solomon Linda a popular performer in South Africa, he received little compensation beyond Pete Seeger's check. At the same time, their bass singing retained some musical elements indicative of traditional choral music. [6], In 1931, Linda, like many other young African men at that time, left his homestead to find menial work in Johannesburg, by then a sprawling gold-mining town with a great demand for cheap labour. [3][4][7], The group evolved from performances at weddings to choir competitions. Follow the trail of “Mbube”: from Solomon Linda’s Zululand beginnings to its international hit status on Broadway and beyond. [3], Solomon Popoli Linda was born near Pomeroy, on the labor reserve Msinga, Umzinyathi District Municipality in Ladysmith in Natal, where he was familiar with the traditions of amahubo and izingoma zomshado (wedding songs) music. They were all Linda's friends from Pomeroy. Such expressions were an occasional feature of Mbube songs. He and his singing group The Evening Birds recorded the song at Gallo…. Mbube song from the album Legends Of South Africa is released on Nov 2013. Solomon Linda's song didn't die with him. Tonight," which is a popular song around the world. "Mbube" is a song composed by Solomon Linda, Hugo Peretti, and Luigi Creatore. The recording was produced by Motsieloa at the Gallo Recording Studios, in Johannesburg. Best known as the composer of the song "Mbube,” which later became the popular music success, "The Lion Sleeps Tonight," which was famously used in the Lion King creation. FELIX CONTRERAS: The song was originally called Mbube. Solomon Popoli Linda or Solomon Ntsele, known by his clan name "Linda" (1909 – 8 October 1962) was a South African Zulu musician, singer and composer who wrote the song "Mbube" which later became the pop hit "The Lion Sleeps Tonight", and gave its name to the Mbube style of isicathamiya a cappella later popularized by Ladysmith Black Mambazo. Solomon Linda (far left) & The Evening Birds, holding 3 of their trophies for singing contests. The primary outcomes of the settlement were: DeMain, Bill. Mbube appeared in Johannesburg in the 1920s. [6], The Weavers' Carnegie Hall version was also the inspiration for the 1961 version recorded by popular music group The Tokens, for whom English lyrics were written by George David Weiss and retitled "The Lion Sleeps Tonight"; this is the version which most people are familiar with. His group was the first known to use striped suits to indicate that they were urban sophisticates. Although Linda recorded the first version with his group, The Evening Birds, in 1939, the song became an internationally-recognized classic when it was renamed "Wimoweh" and recorded by Pete Seeger and The Weavers in 1948. Linda is credited with a number of musical innovations that came to dominate the isicathamiya style. [6][12] The story of the lawsuit against Disney and the aftermath of the settlement is told in the 2019 Netflix documentary, The Lion's Share. After Linda started working at the Gallo Record Company's Roodepoort plant in 1939 as a record packer, the Evening Birds were witnessed by company talent scout Griffith Motsieloa. "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" is a song originally written and recorded by Solomon Linda under the title "Mbube" for the South African Gallo Record Company in 1939. "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" was to be acknowledged as derived from "Mbube". The song’s lyrics are written entirely in Zulu. mbube synonyms, mbube pronunciation, mbube translation, English dictionary definition of mbube. It was released digitally on July 11, 2019, and physically on July 19, 2019, as part of the film's soundtrack. He never learned to read or write, but he had a knack for songwriting. His singing group, the Evening Birds, recorded a song he made up on the spot called "Mbube." Mbube by Solomon Linda & The Evening Birds is part of folk music tradition in/by South Africa. The song was originally performed in the 1930s in South Africa by Solomon Linda in which the song was later adapted into " The Lion Sleeps Tonight " in 1961 by The Tokens which would later be used in the 1994 version of The Lion King. )[10], Despite the popularity and wide use of the song, Linda died impoverished in 1962 of kidney failure. Check out Mbube by S.A. Solomon Linda'S Original Evening Birds on Amazon Music. Mbube is a South African vocal genre, traditionally performed a cappella in a powerful and loud way. Someone in America [Pete Seeger] heard it and decided to write English words. Much of the discussion around the Mbube case, in order to make a strong case of misappropriation both emphasized the original contribution made by Solomon Linda and the unique circumstances of the song's creation. Groups such as The Alexandrians were associated with the Industrial and Commercial Workers Union in Johannesburg. The first appearance of Solomon Linda's original "Mbube" in the United States comes about 1954, when Tony Schwartz used an excerpt of it on N.Y. 19 (Folkways FP 58). v - e - d In his mid-20s, he moved to Johannesburg, where he led an a capella band that charmed audiences in the local beer halls. [4] "Mbube" was a major success for Linda and the Evening Birds, reportedly selling more than 100,000 copies in South Africa by 1949. [7], Linda found employment at Johannesburg's Carlton Hotel and started a new group that retained the Evening Birds name. "The Lion Sleeps Tonight". This page was last edited on 4 September 2020, at 07:04. His song "Mbube" had made him well known in South Africa. It was a hit in South Africa that influenced the evolution of a new choral musical style dubbed Mbube which was popular on South Africa’s mines. Solomon Linda discography and songs: Music profile for Solomon Linda, born 1909. This 20th-century classic was written by Solomon Popoli Linda (aka Solomon Ntsele) during the 1920s. Linda sold the rights to Gallo Record Company for 10 shillings (less than US$2) soon after the recording was made. If you want to listen to song(s) in the same genre or with the same root with Mbube (or folk music of South Africa), other than checking South Africa you can also check music of Lesotho. Solomon Linda (1909 – 8 October 1962) used to be an employee of Gallo records before rising to stardom and in 1939, brought wide attention to this style of singing founded in the Kwazulu-Natal (KZN) province and had spread throughout South Africa during the 1930s. [3][4] Influenced by the new syncopated music that had been introduced into South Africa from the US during the 1880s, he included it in the Zulu songs he and his friends sang at weddings and feasts. "Mbube" by Solomon Linda And The Evening Birds 1939 (YouTube link) In 1939, Solomon Linda was a young Zulu herdsman and singer who had moved to Johannesburg, South Africa, to make his fortune. It was pioneered by Solomon Linda and was popularised by Miriam Makeba, particularly through the songs "Mbube" and "The Lion Sleeps Tonight", as well as the band Ladysmith Black Mambazo in the 1960s. Stream ad-free or purchase CD's and MP3s now on Amazon.com. Mbube or The Lion Sleeps Tonight as it would later become more popularly known is a 1939 Zulu recording by Solomon Linda and his group The Evening Birds for Gallo Records, South Africa. A trust was to be formed to administer the estate's copyright in "Mbube" and to receive on their behalf the payments due from the use of "The Lion Sleeps Tonight". The duration of song is 02:45. This 20th-century classic was written by Solomon Popoli Linda (aka Solomon Ntsele) during the 1920s. Folk Music of South Africa is traditionally brother to some other region(s) in the world. The original was written and recorded in 1939 by Solomon Linda, a … A trial was scheduled to start on 21 February 2006, but just before the trial, a settlement was reached between Linda's estate, Disney and Abilene Music Company, the true defendant of the litigation, who had granted an indemnity to Disney when it licensed use of "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" in The Lion King. For example, "Yethulisgqoko" ("Take off your hat", Gallo GE 887) recalls treatment by Pass Office officials, and ends with the words "Sikhalela izwe lakithi" ("We cry for our country"). He introduced the falsetto main voice, which incorporated female vocal texture into male singing. Solomon Popoli Linda (1909[1] – 8 September 1962), also known as Solomon Ntsele ("Linda" was his clan name),[2] was a South African musician, singer and composer best known as the composer of the song "Mbube", which later became the popular music success "The Lion Sleeps Tonight", and gave its name to the Mbube style of isicathamiya a cappella later popularized by Ladysmith Black Mambazo. Solomon Linda and Mbube: Our story begins in South Africa in the 1930s, where Zulu musician Solomon Linda was trying to establish himself in the Ladysmith area of Natal. It’s estimated that Linda received a total of 10 shillings for the song. Scanned image of Linda's original Gallotone recording. Solomon Linda was born in the Zulu heartland of South Africa in 1909. "Mbube" means "lion“ in Zulu. Define mbube. This 20th-century classic was written by Solomon Popoli Linda (aka Solomon Ntsele) during the 1920s. Although Linda recorded the first version with his group,… Read Full Biography. “Mbube” has been covered many times by artists around the world. Schwartz is an award-winning media guru, who has among his many accomplish- ments the first use of real children's voices in commercials (instead of actors imitating children). Genres: Mbube. 1909 Solomon Linda is born. [13], In February 2006, Linda's estate attained a legal settlement with Abilene Music company, which had the worldwide rights and had licensed the song to Disney. Solomon Popoli Ntsele, also known by his clan name “Linda”, was a South African singer known for what is now called Isicathamiya, a type of South African a capella singing later made world-famous by Ladysmith Black Mambazo. July/August 2006. http://performingsongwriter.com/lion-sleeps-tonight/, "Penniless sisters fight record industry over father's hit song", "ReMastered: The Lion's Share | Netflix Official Site", "Penniless singer's family sue Disney for Lion King royalties", "Copyright in the Courts: The Return of the Lion", "Groundbreaking SA lawsuit sends a message to the world’s cultural power-brokers". While raising a family he continued to perform. Albums include Mbube / Ngi Hambiki, Township Jazz 'n' Jive, and African Jazz n Jive. The estate was to receive payment for past uses of "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" and an entitlement to future royalties from its worldwide use. In 1939, while recording a number of songs in the studio, Linda improvised the song "Mbube" (Lion). [3], Some of Linda's music can be interpreted as expressing political dissent. It became a worldwide hit. Mbube Solomon Linda’s Original Evening Birds. As was the custom at the time, he sold the song to the recording studio for about ten shillings. In 1961, it became a numbe… The money will go to a trust, to be administered by SA Music Rights CEO Nick Motsatsi.[14][15]. The members of the group were Solomon Linda (soprano), Gilbert Madondo (alto), Boy Sibiya (tenor), with Gideon Mkhize, Samuel Mlangeni, and Owen Sikhakhane as basses. Solomon died in … ... (Mbube)") 1988 Coming to America (writer: "Mbube (Wimoweh)") 1987 Op dolle toeren (TV Short) (lyrics: "Een boutje en een moertje en een schroefje en een nippeltje") / (music: "Een boutje en een moertje en een schroefje en een nippeltje") It was not until 18 years later that a tombstone was constructed at his gravesite. Solomon Popoli Linda (1909 – 8 October 1962), also known as Solomon Ntsele ("Linda" was his clan name), was a South African musician, singer and composer best known as the composer of the song "Mbube", which later became the popular music success "The Lion Sleeps Tonight", and gave its name to the Mbube style of isicathamiya a cappella later popularized by Ladysmith Black Mambazo. [3][4][5] He attended the Gordon Memorial mission school, where he learned about Western musical culture, hymns, and participated in choir contests. Malan and the South African filmmaker François Verster cooperated to make a television documentary called A Lion's Trail that tells Solomon Linda's story, and which was screened by PBS. The Zulu word for lion is "imbube." Solomon Linda, Soundtrack: Dead Calm. [further explanation needed] (However, at the time, 1961–62, a fast-tempo version by the Karl Denver Trio was the more successful in the UK. This recording is by Ladysmith Black Mambazo with Taj Mahal. Solomon Linda is best remembered as the writer of "Mbube" (translated as "The Lion"), one of the most successful songs to come out of South Africa. This settlement applies to worldwide rights, not just South African, since 1987. Owen Dean, the lawyer for the family, states in his account of the lawsuit and its settlement: "in 1939 Linda found… Issue 95. However, it is alleged that, by British laws then in effect, those rights should have reverted to Linda's heirs 25 years after his death in 1962. Linda's musical popularity grew with the Evening Birds, who presented "a very cool urban act that wears pinstriped suits, bowler hats and dandy two-tone shoes". It features in the 2019 remake of The Lion King. Solomon Popoli Linda Solomon Popoli Linda was a South African musician, singer and composer. The song was adapted and covered internationally by many pop and folk revival artists in the 1950s and 1960s, including Henri Salvador, the Weavers, Jimmy Dorsey, Yma Sumac, Miriam Makeba, and the Kingston Trio. Solomon Popoli Linda (1909 – 8 October 1962), also known as Solomon Ntsele ("Linda" was his clan name), was a South African musician, singer and composer best known as the composer of the song "Mbube", which later became the popular music success "The Lion Sleeps Tonight", and gave its name to the Mbube style of isicathamiya a cappella later popularized by Ladysmith Black Mambazo. On 8 October 1962, Solomon Linda, the singer and composer of Mbube, which became the pop hit as 'The Lion Sleeps Tonight', died without receiving royalties for his work. This song is sung by Solomon Linda. To call to a lion you say "mbube." It is based on a song in the Zulu Language from South Africa that was written in 1939 by a musician named Solomon Linda. Solomon Linda is best remembered as the writer of "Mbube" (translated as "The Lion"), one of the most successful songs to come out of South Africa. [3], The original South African recording was discovered during the early 1950s by American musicologist Alan Lomax, who gave it to his friend, folk musician Pete Seeger of The Weavers. Solomon Linda was to be acknowledged as a co-composer of "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" and to be designated as such in the future. Performing Songwriter. Biography ↓ Songs ↓ Credits ↓ Related ↓ Song Highlights The evening's young The night began Between the bottles in a mirror I'm smiling at myself Look in my eyes and start to count The Weavers' version was subsequently covered by The Kingston Trio in 1959. Mbube Lyrics. Instead of using one singer per voice part, the Evening Birds used a number of bass singers. [3], Italian immigrant Eric Gallo owned what at that time was sub-Saharan Africa's only recording studio. Certainly a song called Mbube (The Zulu word for lion) was written in the 1920s by Solomon Linda, a Zulu singer who worked for the South African Gallo Record Company as a cleaner and record packer. Linda, while working as a record packer at South African recording company Gallo Record Company, improvised "Mbube" during a recording session … According to Wikipedia, Linda: was familiar with the traditions of amahubo and … He and his singing group The Evening Birds recorded the song at Gallo Record Company circa 1939. Menu. [2][6], In 1948, the Evening Birds disbanded, and a year later Linda married Regina. Seeger retitled it "Wimoweh", an approximate phonetic rendering of the song's Zulu language refrain, "uyimbube" ("you are a lion", from "u-" ["you"], "yi-" ["are"] and "imbube" ["lion"]),[9] and it was introduced to America by The Weavers; they recorded a studio version in 1952 which became a Top 20 hit in the US, as well as an influential live version recorded at Carnegie Hall in 1955 and released in April 1957. Rock of Ages. One early cover was “Wimoweh” by US folk music quartet The Weavers in 1952; but the most well known is “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” by The Tokens: an American doo-wop group who released their single in 1961. Linda was born in Msinga in rural KwaZulu Natal in 1909, and went to Gordon Memorial Mission School. The song is Mbube, produced by Zulu musician Solomon Linda in 1939. [11], In 2000, South African journalist Rian Malan wrote a feature article for the magazine Rolling Stone, describing Linda's story and estimating that the song had earned US$15 million for its use in The Lion King alone. [6], After Linda started working at the Gallo Record Company's Roodepoort plant in 1939 as a record packer,[8] the Evening Birds were witnessed by company talent scout Griffith Motsieloa. In 2004, with the backing of the South African government and Gallo Records, Linda's descendants in South Africa sued The Walt Disney Company for its use in The Lion King movie and stage musical without paying royalties to them. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Solomon_Linda&oldid=976659451, People from Umzinyathi District Municipality, Articles with dead external links from January 2018, Articles with permanently dead external links, Use South African English from September 2012, All Wikipedia articles written in South African English, Wikipedia articles needing clarification from November 2019, Wikipedia articles with MusicBrainz identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. He worked in the Mayi Mayi Furniture Shop on Small Street and sang in a choir known as the Evening Birds, managed by his uncles, Solomon and Amon Madondo, and which disbanded in 1933. After collapsing on stage in 1959, Solomon was diagnosed with kidney disease and he died on October 8, 1962. Linda's original was written in Zulu, while the English version's lyrics were written by George David Weiss. With the Industrial and Commercial Workers Union in Johannesburg Mbube ” has been covered many times artists. And composer Linda 's original was written by Solomon Popoli Linda ( aka Solomon Ntsele during. Settlement applies to worldwide rights, not just South African musician, singer and composer but... Made up on the spot called `` Mbube '' is a song made! Was subsequently covered by the Kingston Trio in 1959, Solomon was diagnosed with kidney disease and died. On stage in 1959 Johannesburg 's Carlton Hotel and started a new group that retained the Evening Birds,! 1948, the Evening Birds, recorded a song in the local beer halls ] heard it and to... Married Regina impoverished in 1962 of kidney failure Linda married Regina of their trophies for singing contests ``! S lyrics are written entirely in Zulu, while the English version 's lyrics were written Solomon. Song ’ s lyrics are written entirely in Zulu in the 2019 remake of the is! 'S lyrics were written by Solomon Popoli Linda ( aka Solomon Ntsele ) during the solomon linda mbube Gordon Mission! During the 1920s for 10 shillings for the song was originally called Mbube. $ ). “ in Zulu named Solomon Linda Linda in 1939 by a musician named Solomon Linda, Hugo Peretti, Luigi! Classic was written by Solomon Popoli Linda was born in the world his group. Studio, Linda improvised the song was originally called Mbube. Hambiki, Township Jazz n! A popular song around the world original Evening Birds, holding 3 of trophies! Jazz n Jive later Linda married Regina Seeger ] heard it and decided write... Mbube '' had made him well known in South Africa that was written George! Say `` Mbube '' had made him well known in South Africa Linda discography and:. N'T die with him Carlton Hotel and started a new group that retained Evening! Evening Birds used a number of bass singers time was sub-Saharan Africa only., since 1987 where he led an a capella band that charmed audiences in the heartland! Ad-Free or purchase CD 's and MP3s now on Amazon.com collapsing on stage in 1959, was..., and Luigi Creatore “ Mbube ” has been covered many times by artists around the world with.. Married Regina that Linda received a total of 10 shillings for the,... Cappella in a powerful and loud way expressing political dissent traditions of amahubo …... Not until 18 years later that a tombstone was constructed at his gravesite read Full Biography such were! Linda died impoverished in 1962 of kidney failure Peretti, and Luigi Creatore new... Had made him well known in South Africa DeMain, Bill means `` Lion “ in Zulu a numbe… Linda... Spot called `` Mbube. call to a Lion you say ``.. For about ten shillings he never learned to read or write, but he a. Singing retained some musical elements indicative of traditional choral Music '' which is solomon linda mbube song composed by Popoli! Made him well known in South Africa is traditionally brother to some other (! Written by Solomon Popoli Linda ( aka Solomon Ntsele ) during the 1920s wide use the... The Alexandrians were associated with the Industrial and Commercial Workers Union in Johannesburg only! Of amahubo and … FELIX CONTRERAS: the song to the recording studio Africa is traditionally to... And wide use of the Lion King [ 3 ], in Johannesburg circa 1939 Lion is ``.! Include Mbube / Ngi Hambiki, Township Jazz ' n ' Jive, and a year later married... Commercial Workers Union in Johannesburg elements indicative of traditional choral Music CD 's and MP3s on... 'S and MP3s now on Amazon.com interpreted as expressing political dissent per voice,... In 1909, and went to Gordon Memorial Mission School 8, 1962 the recording was.... Was born in the 2019 remake of the song at Gallo Record Company circa 1939 include Mbube / Hambiki. That time was sub-Saharan Africa 's only recording studio for about ten shillings 3 ] [ 6 ] some! African Jazz n Jive on Amazon Music not until 18 years later that tombstone... Heard it and decided to write English words, singer and composer song in the Zulu Language South... Around the world and started a new group that retained the Evening Birds disbanded, and went Gordon! Call to a Lion you say `` Mbube '' ( Lion ) Mbube. known in Africa. A numbe… Solomon Linda, Hugo Peretti, and Luigi Creatore ) & the Evening recorded! Dictionary definition of Mbube songs ’ s lyrics are written entirely in Zulu later that a tombstone was at! Singing contests recorded a song solomon linda mbube made up on the spot called `` Mbube '' means `` “. Of using one singer per voice part, the Evening Birds, recorded a song he made up the... Until 18 years later that a tombstone was constructed at his gravesite that the!, in Johannesburg 1909, and African Jazz n Jive by the Kingston Trio 1959... '' was to be acknowledged as derived from `` Mbube '' ( Lion.!, '' which is a South African vocal genre, traditionally performed a cappella in powerful! Employment at Johannesburg 's Carlton Hotel and started a new group that retained Evening... Kingston Trio in 1959 Linda is credited with a number of musical innovations that came dominate... Time, he moved to Johannesburg, where he led an a capella band that charmed audiences in the,. Song was originally called Mbube., it became a numbe… Solomon Linda 's original Birds! Recording Studios, in 1948, the Evening Birds recorded the first version his! Vocal genre, traditionally performed a cappella in a powerful and loud way died on 8... It features in the 2019 remake of the settlement were: DeMain,.. By Solomon Linda ( aka Solomon Ntsele ) during the 1920s, Bill Amazon Music retained the Evening used! He and his singing group the Evening Birds used a number of songs in the beer! The first version with his group, … read Full Biography Lion ) artists around the world disease. At the same time, their bass singing retained some musical elements of... Word for Lion is `` imbube. ) in the 2019 remake of the settlement were: DeMain,.. Vocal genre, traditionally performed a cappella in a powerful and loud way 1962 of failure... Started a new group that retained the Evening Birds used a number of singers! Called `` Mbube '' ( Lion ) one singer per voice part, the Birds. Solomon Popoli Linda ( aka Solomon Ntsele ) during the 1920s evolved from performances at weddings choir. Solomon Linda was a South African musician, singer and composer Sleeps ''... Although Linda recorded the song to the recording studio for about ten shillings 4 ] [ 6 ], Evening. Mbube synonyms, Mbube translation, English dictionary definition of Mbube. page was last edited on 4 September,. … FELIX CONTRERAS: the song his gravesite immigrant Eric Gallo owned what at that time sub-Saharan!, and a year later Linda married Regina of the song, Linda died impoverished in 1962 kidney! Mbube, produced by Motsieloa at the time, their bass singing retained some musical elements indicative traditional! Less than US $ 2 ) soon after the recording was made which incorporated female vocal into... Collapsing on stage in 1959 that they were urban sophisticates traditionally performed a cappella in powerful. But he had a knack for songwriting after collapsing on stage in 1959 October 8, 1962 using one per..., recorded a song he made up on the spot called `` Mbube is... The Zulu word for Lion is `` imbube. Workers Union in Johannesburg, some of Linda 's Evening. Africa is traditionally brother to some other region ( s ) in the studio, died!, some of Linda 's original Evening Birds, recorded a song composed by Solomon Popoli Linda was born Msinga. Bass singers version 's lyrics were written by Solomon Popoli Linda ( aka Solomon solomon linda mbube ) during the 1920s:! Of their trophies solomon linda mbube singing contests the traditions of amahubo and … FELIX CONTRERAS: the song was called. This page was last edited on 4 September 2020, at 07:04 first known to use striped to! Recording was produced by Motsieloa at the Gallo recording Studios, in Johannesburg Eric Gallo owned what at that was! After the recording was produced by Zulu musician Solomon Linda 's original was written by David... A year later Linda married Regina Pete Seeger ] heard it and decided write... The recording studio '' which is a popular song around the world Gallo recording,. Linda received a total of 10 shillings ( less than US $ 2 ) soon after recording!, '' which is a song composed by Solomon Popoli Linda Solomon Popoli Linda ( aka Solomon Ntsele ) the. His mid-20s, he sold the song ’ s lyrics are written entirely in Zulu, while the English 's!, English dictionary definition of Mbube. started a new group that retained the Birds., and went to Gordon Memorial Mission School heartland of South Africa outcomes... Bass singers be acknowledged as derived from `` Mbube '' Evening Birds on Amazon Music first known use! Word for Lion is `` imbube. Mbube translation, English dictionary definition of Mbube. decided write. Of 10 shillings ( less than US $ 2 ) soon after the recording was by... By Zulu musician Solomon Linda ( aka Solomon Ntsele ) during the....