Thursday, 04 February 2021
A Congolese-Belgian artist was among the winners of the Music Moves Europe Talent Awards announced this month at a digital award ceremony of the Eurosonic Noorderslag festival.
Marie-Pierra Kakoma, who performs as Lous and the Yakuza, was born in the Democratic Republic of the Congo to parents who were prominent doctors. Her family fled to Belgium as refugees following the arrest of her Rwandan mother, and her French lyrics often touch upon the pain and hardship they experienced.
Kakoma now lives in Brussels and appeared on the popular NPR Tiny Desk series this year to perform songs from her 2020 album Gore.
NPR wrote that “her songs are often set to Congolese rumba rhythms, filled with resilience, beauty and resistance” that reflect the experiences of troubled teenage years that preceded her current successes in music and art.
The four-day Eurosonic Noorderslag festival where Kakoma won recognition is typically held in the Netherlands and described as “the biggest showcase festival of Europe,” with a goal of helping emerging artists break into the mainstream music scene.
The Music Moves Europe Talent Awards are co-funded by Creative Europe, which is an EU finding program for the cultural sector.
The Brussels Times