Manu Dibango, well known for his 1972 hit Soul Makossa has succumbed to Covid- 19 in France.
Dibango is the first one of the worldwide top legends who has died of the disease.
The 86-year-old afro-jazz and funk music with unique traditional genre singer, hails from Cameroon.
He once produced some serious music with Nigeria’s Afro-beat singer Fela Kuti.
The Cameroonian musician filed a lawsuit in 2009 saying Michael Jackson had stolen a hook from his song, Soul Makossa, for two tracks on the world’s best-selling album, Thriller. They settled the case out of court.
“It is with deep sadness that we announce you the loss of Manu Dibango, our Papy Groove,” a statement on his official Facebook page read.
His funeral will take place in “strict privacy”, the statement read, asking instead for people to send condolences by email adding that a tribute will be arranged “when possible”.
Top African musicians Angelique Kidjo and Youssou Ndour have led the tributes.
“You’re the original giant of African music and a beautiful human being,” Angelique Kidjo posted.
Ndour referred to Dibango as a “big brother, a pride for Cameroon and all of Africa”.
Both Ndour and Kidjo, along with other stars among them Papa Wemba, worked on Dibango’s 1994 album Wakafrika.