Elizabeth Finant, better known as Abeti Masikini, or just "Abeti," was a pioneer of the Congolese music scene - one of the first female singers there to really make an impact. She was born on November 9, 1954, in present-day Kisangani to a civil servant who, as a supporter of first Congolese President Patrice Lumumba, was murdered in 1961 during the unrest that followed Independence.
While Abeti sang in the Catholic Church as a child, and performed in clubs and competitions, her career received a jump-start in 1971 when she made the acquaintance of the Togolese producer Gérard Akueson. He became her life-companion and father of her children and produced all of her records. Her first release, 1973's Pierre Cardin Présente Abeti (Disques Pierre Cardin PC 93.501) was in the "contemporary" style popularized by singers like Miriam Makeba and Togo's Bella Bellow. Which is maybe not surprisng given that Akueson was also Bellow's producer.
A steady stream of releases followed, which placed Abeti at the pinnacle of the Kinshasa music scene, rivalled only by M'Pongo Love and M'Bilia Bel for the title of Congo's top female vocalist. Over the years she showed an eclectic willingness to wander outside the standard Congolese rumba/soukous paradigm, drawing on influences far and wide to forge her unique sound. An excellent example is the late-'80s recording Je Suis Faché (Bade Stars Music AM 033), which draws on techno and the zouk style out of the French Caribbean, which was then sweeping Africa and the world. This was probably her biggest hit ever and I'm happy to present it here by request.
Abeti died of cancer in France on September 28, 1994.
Abeti - Je Suis Faché
Abeti - Lolo
Abeti - Viens Mon Amour
Abeti - Piege Ya Bolingo
Download Je Suis Faché as a zipped file here.