Zangalewa – Zamina Mina (Waka Waka) – Original Song

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“Zangalewa” is an army song from Cameroon by a band named “The Golden Sounds”. When it became a massive hit in the 1980’s, the band changed their name to Zangalewa too. The song was used by soldiers, students, and athletes throughout Africa for marching and rallying.

“Zangalewa” has been covered by dozens of other artists, most famously by Shakira who used the chorus for the 2010 FIFA World Cup anthem.

The lyrics for “Zamina Mina (Zangalewa)” were written by a member of the Presidential Guard of Cameroon, Emile (“Emilio”) Kojidie.

“The lyrics, which are presented in full here for the first time, make it clear that in the end this is simply the lament of a soldier. He is probably young, perhaps far from home, and he is coming to terms with the rigors of army life. From the very first word – Zangalewa (“Who called you? Or, “Who brought you to the army?”) – you know that the recruit is wondering what he has gotten himself into.
A few of the lyrics are in Douala, a language of Cameroun, but most are in the Pidgin English spoken in Cameroon, Nigeria, and Ghana. In Cameroon today this broken English is mixed with French and patois. Other portions of the song are in French, with some idiomatic expressions thrown in.

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Tchakouyap Marie-ode says:

C trop lol shakira les a copier

Zigmeister4 says:

I think she might have credited them; otherwise they would have sued her for copyright violation by now. This is a well known Cameroonian army song from way back!!

jonanice says:

I haven’t read or seen all stories done on this topic only a press conference where Shakira is explaining how the tune & the lyrics came into her head, as if it was completely made up on the spot & did not mention anything about this army song

soukousman says:

This is Makossa from Douala, Cameroon. Calypso is still from the same region but more-over the country of Sierra Leone, I’ll try to find a link for both genres. Don’t get the information from wikipedia, not all of informs people about the correct factual knowledge.

soukousman says:

The coverage and popularity of Shakira’s cover has introduced westerns to African Music, which is probably one of hardest attempts since African Music (the real African Music) isn’t promoted in a music channel in the U.S., Americans mostly listen to American Music so this came well, language barrier along with many factors but that shouldn’t be the standard; don’t let a popular song define your music taste, it should come naturally.

boomtingkenisha says:

hello my felo camerounians like you, I am proud and love bein camerounian so i made a facebook page for camerounians to come together, can you please show your support by sharing or liking the page , i will really really apreciate it thank you so much xxx
the name of the facebook page : FIER d’etre camerounais
si comme moi tu es fier d’être Kmer, alors aime notre page sur facebook : FIER d’etre camerounais

Luis Gustavo Vanegas says:

I am Colombian, don’t know how Shakira Managed the rights for this song, but this original version was very famous here back in the 80’s son we have no doubt of the cover from this original version

Daniel Ariza says:

Claro, mis amigos ¿creen que la canción original es de Shakira? Tengo 44 años y desde niño estoy escuchando a estos señores cantando esta canción la cual está bien hecha, no como la de Shakira que es una burda imitación. Yo tambén soy colombiano, pero la calidad se reconoce tan pronto se ve. Estos africanos no tienen igual; su música es superior.

Mzelle Marina says:


Anne Sewell says:

I’m pretty certain she did. I just did a review of Freshlyground on Digital Journal (who worked with Shakira on Waka Waka) and there was mention of this song, hence I came looking. 🙂

madonnaberry81 says:

Best song ever cameroon oyeeeeee

xRDxutter says:

las chicas del can tambien tienen una version

0x0000e7 says:

zatan music

Edgar Hernandez says:

SHAKIRA made this song because she loves it, she used to listen to this song since she was a little girl. I am from Barranquilla, the same city Shakira is from and this song is very popular there.
In a western country like Colombia we listen to all kind of music including African music.

jimcol06 says:

por supuesto que esta es l original, este riitmo es tipicamente africano, sino q en el caribe especialmente es muy escuchada la musica africana, sobretodo en cartagena-colombia

joy ripon says:


Juliso35 says:


burrroprieto says:

Vaina lindaaaa

burrroprieto says:

Pinta un bosque y pierdete

burrroprieto says:

Totalmente de acuerdo

Kendra Mpeh says:

I listened to this all the time when I was young. then shakira did it -.- oh well proud Cameroonian x)

merveille pesl says:

la belle époque, merci

Jens Kosanke says:

absolutely love this song!!! Africa, oh Africa!! so full of life!!

nadmessamena says:

Yeah, the only one…

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