Alubusu’s Shalapo

I have recently fallen in love with a song by Alubusu, who was a Zambian Musician that passed away last year. I love Zambian Music and have a playlist on youtube, and no, I didn’t make the videos. People speculate that Alubusu was saying bye in his song Shalapo because the word Shalapo means bye. In its most accurate translation, it means “Stay well” or even “remain well” which doesn’t sound very grammatically correct but I hope it conveys what I am trying to say.

Bemba words can mean something different depending on the context and though people think he was saying goodbye and that he knew he would be dying, I don’t share that view. I put this song in the category of Praise and worship. In the song, he pretty much says that this world is not our home and we are just passing through. He is pretty much saying goodbye and good riddance to his old life; to what the world has to offer and going after what God has for him. He says that God has filled his life with joy and he asks that God would give him strength to praise Him. He has searched the world and hasn’t found anything that gave him joy and that he has seen Gods grace. That God has dried his tears and he pretty much lists the things he is leaving behind, some of which are alcohol, theft smoking, poverty, and joblessness. He also lists the blessings. My Nyanja is really bad and when I am sure about all that he says in the Nyanja bits, I will be sure to post! And if anyone would like to add on to it, comment.

I think Alubusu is one of those good things that Zambia and Africa as a whole produced. His music was not vulgar and always carried a positive message. He didn’t conform and was a trend setter as far as Zambian Music was concerned and while it took me a while to appreciate his music, I love it! I think he definitely deserves a place among the best of Africa.

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