Grupo Lokito fuse contemporary Congolese and Cuban music creating a modern day cocktail of two of the great world musics.
‘Grass roots music played with gusto. Live entertainment at its best.’ – Chilli Fiesta
UK LUKAS AWARDS TROPICAL ACT OF THE YEAR 2017
Based in London, the band have taken the UK by storm, wowing festivals and the club circuit alike with their blistering grooves and outlandish dance moves.
The glorious melodious vocals of Congolese front men Eugene Makuta and Iddo Donnatella blends with soaring guitars courtesy of Congolese guitar hero Mbokalia, rhythmic grooves from Shyam and the lilting keyboards of Sara. All of this sits on top of the rhythmic powerhouse team of Ernesto (drums), Emeris (Congas) and Elpidio (bass).
Since their formation in 2006 the band have gone from strength to strength, completing several UK tours and building a solid following. As if the grooves weren’t enough, the band have developed a rapport with their audiences which gets everyone up on their feet. This was reflected in the band being named Tropical Act of the Year 2017 by the UK Lukas Awards. For large gigs and Festival the band expands to include the blistering horn section of Deanna Wilhelm (trumpet), Clare Hirst (sax) and Viva Msimang ( trombone).
Grupo Lokito write their own original tunes: stories of life ranging from love tales, reflections on the trials facing musicians trying to make a home away from home, the wisdom of the elders to the simple joy of dancing.
During lockdown in the UK amidst the Coronavirus pandemic Grupo Lokito were awarded Arts Council Funding which is enabling them to work through lockdown, writing and recording new material with the aim of releasing an album towards the end of 2020.
The first in a series of releases to come out is Yoka! A stomping dance track from Grupo Lokito to lift your spirits. The track features the amazing guitar skills of the wonderful Kiamfu ‘ Burkina Faso’ Kasongo. A great summer anthem, you will dance!
Our second single to come out in 2020 is ¡Lo Que Pasó! A hot salsa tune with a Congolese flavour. The song is a taster of whats to come on the forthcoming album.
Bolingo Ya Londres is our third single, a song celebrating London life. It is an upbeat number in typical Congolese Rumba style, with a lyrical verse leading into a lively chorus before hitting the dancing part – the seben.
In 2010 the band released their first album “Esengo Ya Ko Bina” (The Joy of Dancing) capturing the vibrancy and spirit of their stage show. Grupo Lokito have been included in several compilation CDs including: “Latin Beat” on Putumayo (Aug 30 2011), “Urban Africa” on Cavendish Music (2010) and “The Rough guide to African Street Party “ on the World Music Network (2008).
2022 NEW RELEASE COMING SOON!
Eugene Makuta and Iddo Donnatella – Vocals
Ernesto Marichales – Drums and Percussion
Emeris Solis – Percussion
Elpidio Alegria – Bass
Sara McGuinness – Keyboards/Bandleader
Kiamfu ‘ Burkina Faso’ Kasongo – Guitars
Shyam ‘Jamrock’ Shah – Rhythm Guitar
Extended band includes the blistering horn section: