Alberto Teta Lando (1948–2008) was an Angolan musician, and was born in Mbanza Congo, the capital city of Zaire Province in the north of the country, and his ethnicity is Bakongo1. He is not well known outside Portuguese-speaking African countries and Portugal itself.
His music focused on Angolan identity, the country’s civil war, the saudades (nostalgia, melancholy and longing) of Angolan exiles, as well as young love and family. He spoke and sung in both the Portuguese and Kikongo languages. Among his most well known songs were “Irmao ama teu irmao” (“Brother, love your brother”) and “Eu vou voltar” (“I will return”).
During the last several years of his life, he managed to re-unite a group of many Angolan musicians. He died in Paris, France, after battling cancer (Wikipedia).
Teta Lando was one of the best and finest artist of Mukongo origin from Northern Angola. The song called Ntoyo song evokes a deep underlying sense of identity of the Bakongos’ experience and feeling derived from the period before and after Angola’s independence in 1975. The Bakongo were the first people to be subjugated by the Portuguese and the first to mobilize and launch a guerrilla warfare against the colonial Portuguese in Angola. However, the Portuguese and the new Angolan authorities have always suspected, feared and resented the deep cultural and intellectual heritage of the Bakongos. Drawing from Kongo’s past experience, Lando adapts a folk song in which a bird Ntoyo (eagle) have its wisdom always undermined and mocked by others birds in the forest despite all its effort to wise them up about the impending danger of letting foreign birds to dictate the their terms in our land.
1 The Bakongo people of Central Africa comprise around 13 per cent of Angola’s population, and the majority of the inhabitants of the northern Angolan province of Cabinda. Read more about it here.
Selected Teta Lando songs
- Teta Lando – Irmão Ama Teu Irmão (1975)
- Teta Lando – Eu vou voltar (1981)
- Teta Lando – Ntoyo (1987)
- Teta Lando – Quatorze Chuvas / Cabelos Brancos (1993) (later reworked by Yuri Da Cunha as a semba song, in 2015)