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Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Seven Examples Of Mambo Sawa Sawa (Videos & Lyrics)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This post presents seven videos of the Swahili Gospel song "Mamba Sawa Sawa". Lyrics to some versions of this song are also included in this post.

Updated September 27, 2014

The content of this post is presented for spiritual, informational, and aesthetic purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

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FEATURED VIDEOS & LYRICS
(These videos are presented in no particular order.)

Example #1: Songbirds - Mambo Sawa Sawa (OFFICIAL VIDEO)



Joashstilltheman,Uploaded on Jan 24, 2010

Title track by Songbirds (Ruth Wamuyu et al) from their album MAMBO SAWA SAWA
-snip-
Several comments that are found on this video's viewer comment thread http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jx01ItBclGI, indicate that "Mambo Sawa Sawa" is an old song. One commenter wrote that he remembers this song from the 1990s & another person wrote that he remember this song from when he was very little. Still another person wrote that the original person who sung this song was "a Zairian".

Here's an excerpt of a newspaper article about this version's lead vocalist Ruth Wamuyu:
http://www.ajabuafrica.com/Gospel%20Artist-Ruth%20Wamuyu.html Story and pics By Harrison Maina; AjabuAfrica.com,07/10/2008
Lowell, MA
"[photograph notation]
Ecstastic Kenyans go chini Kwa chini (low for low) as they dance to the rythmic Gospel tunes by Ruth Wamuyu, who is visiting the US"
[photograph notation]
"Ruth Wamuyu, a popular Kenyan Gospel Musician who is cureently on a US tour, entertains Christians during a Live Praise event held at the CCF Church in Lowell , MA

A passionately popular Gospel artist, Evangelist Ruth Wamuyu, of the Mambo Sawa Sawa ( Kiswahili for ‘Things are already better’) hit song, attracted hundreds of fans to a fun-cum-spirit filled Sunday event at the CCF Church in Lowell, Massachusetts, USA."
-snip-
The English lyrics sung in this version are:
Things already better
Things already better
things already better
When the Lord is on the throne
Things already better now.
-snip-
The English translation for the Swahili word "mambo" is "things". In the "Mambo Sawa Sawa" songs, the word "better" appears to usually be the English translation for the Swahili phrase "sawa sawa".

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Example #2: James Okon - Mambo Sawa Sawa



Dan Zeeno, Published on Dec 18, 2012
-snip-
Here's my basic transcription of this version of "Mambo Sawa Sawa":

Mambo Sawa Sawa
Mambo Sawa Sawa
Yesu Akiwa Enzini
Mambo sawa sawa
Mambo sawa sawa
Mambo sawa sawa

(repeat several times)

May be tough
May be rough
May be bad
But I hold on to God’s promises.
From His word I’m saved from any man
I believe.
I receive.

Mambo sawa sawa etc.

Things already better
Things already better
For the Lord is on the throne
Things already better
Things already better
Things already better

I am going higher
I am going higher
For the Lord is on the throne
I am going higher
I am going higher
I am going higher

May be tough etc.

Mambo sawa sawa
Mambo sawa sawa
Mambo sawa sawa
Things already better
Things already better
Things already better

I am going higher
I am going higher
I am going higher

Lift Jesus higher
(Mambo)
Lift Jesus higher
(Mambo)

[More call & response with the words mambo and sawa; the song ends with "Mambo sawa sawa".
-snip-
This basic transcription is by Azizi Powell from the above video. Disclaimer: I don't speak any Swahili. Additions & corrections are very welcome.

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Example #4: Kijitonyama Upendo Group Mambo Sawa Sawa Official Video



Africha Entertainment, Published on Apr 26, 2014

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Example #5: Bethany Children's choir from Tanzania sing 'Mambo sawa sawa'



unapendo,Published on Oct 20, 2012

The Bethany Family Choir (from Tanzania) visiting the UK and singing at St Leonard's Church, Padiham on Friday 19th October 2012. The 11 children + teacher and 3 Bethany students make up the choir and are visiting various schools, colleges, churches and other organisations on their 7 week visit Oct - Dec 2012. For more information: www.bethanyonline.org

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Example #6: Watoto Children's Choir | Mambo Sawa



WatotoUS's channel,Uploaded on Jan 5, 2010

Watoto Children's Choir gives an energetic performance of "Mambo Sawa" which means "Life is Good" -- Recorded Live at Springs Church in Canada

Mambo Sawa By Kamsa (Official HDVideo)



Maxton Videos, Published on Jul 28, 2014
- Kenyan Gospel -

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ADDENDUM
Here's another version of the "Mambo Sama Sama" song's lyrics:
From http://www.destinyafrica.org/assets/lyrics/Things%20already%20better.pdf

Things already better
Mambo Sawa Sawa
Mambo Sawa Sawa
Yesu Akiwa Enzini
Mambo sawa sawa
Mambo sawa sawa
Mambo sawa sawa

Things already better
Things already better
When the lord is on my side
Things already better
Things already better
Things already better

Pepele Pepele (Pepele)
Pepele Na Yesu Nangayi ( pepele)

Balabala Yesu Nakopesa Emotema
Langanyoso kolatikala pepelewo ( Pepele)
Balabala Yesu Nakopesa Emotema
Langanyoso kolatikala pepelewo ( Pepele)

Oh labala yesu wee-pepelewo- pepele
Sikumesiyo wee- pepelewo pepele

Yelele, Yelele yelele yelele
(yesu mukama, Ya tuwadde obulamu, Yesu masiya)

BONUS VIDEO: Sawa Sawa



ericwainainavideos, Uploaded on Jul 22, 2011
-snip-
From this video's viewer comment thread http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MH1Ji9NiBtQ
it appears that this inspirational song is almost 13 years old.

Notice that in the beginning of this video, the vocalist says "Everything is alright", everything is okay". These are English translations for the Swahili words "sawa sawa".

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EDITORIAL NOTE:
The word "mambo" in the Swahili Gospel songs "Mambo Sawa Sawa" & the Gospel song "Sawa Sawa" doesn't have the same origin & meaning as the music/dance "mambo". That word "mambo" comes from the Kikongo language and means "conversation with the gods". http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mambo_(music).

Also, the phrase "sawa sawa" in the "Mambo Sawa Sawa" songs (which may also be found as "Mambo Sawa") does not have the same origin & meaning as the Igbo phrase "sawa sawa" in the Nigerian song "Sawale", or in its recent sexually explicit version "Nwa Baby". In those songs "sawa sawa" refers to the act of walking the streets. http://www.nairaland.com/589179/what-nwa-baby-ashawo-song.

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENT AND THANKS
Thanks to the composers of this song, and to the vocalists, musicians, and church members who sung this song. Thanks also to the journalist who was quoted in this post, the quoted transcriber of a version of this song's lyrics, and the uploaders of these featured videos.

Thank you for visiting pancocojams.

Viewer comments are welcome.

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