I first discovered Dr. Alban in Russia. 1992. I don't think I ever heard anyone here in America mention him. But the kids in Russia thought he was the bomb back then.
I got his album. Boy, that's a whole nother story!
Let's just say, when I got back to america, I searched high and low, finally special ordering the CD "One Love".
I love it. It is very AFRICAN. The CD is mostly in English, but he has some african language, Swahili, I think thrown in sometimes. I really like hearing songs in other languages. It makes the musical experience more pure, not knowing what is being said. Only listening to the sound of the words, and the emotion in the inflection.
How often do we really understand what each other are saying, even in our native tongue?
Songs in other languages cut me loose to not understand.
Anyway, Dr. Alban is highly electronic. Dancehall reggae, I guess. "Sing Hallelujah" is very gospel sounding. "Om We Rembwe Ike" sounds extremely tribal. I love the foreign (to me) roots of his musical expression. These are great dance tunes.
The message is especially poignant right now, too. "One Love" breaks my heart.
"The rich will live
and the poor will die
this is not it and what is it?
And "It's my life" works great as a angst teenage song. It also has a deeper meaning, when taken in the context of African politics; Dr. Alban sings love songs to his home Africa.