The 86-year-old music stalwart was recognised worldwide for his contemporary style, fusing jazz and funk music with traditional sounds belonging to the African country, Cameroon.
The 86-year-old Cameroonian saxophonist, best known for the 1972 hit Soul Makossa, passed away on Tuesday (March 24, 20), his editor Thierry Durepaire told Agence Presse France.
Dibango's funeral service will be held in privacy and a memory service will reportedly be organised when it's possible. He was a musician and songwriter who played the saxophone and vibraphone.
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Dibango was born in 1933 in Douala, Cameroon.
In the late 1960s, Dibango started his own band, played with a string of French musicians and in 1972 he had a major hit with "Soul Makossa", a song that brought him global success and was reinterpreted by many other artists.
In 2009 he filed a lawsuit against Michael Jackson, accusing the American singer of stealing a hook from his hit Soul Makossa. The riff became world-famous through Jackson's hit "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'". The matter was later settled out of court. He moved to France in 1949 where he discovered jazz music.
He worked with notable stars such as South Africa's Ladysmith Black Mambazo and American Herbie Hancock and also won an all African Music Legend Award.