The Late DJ Arafat Takes Our #AOTW Segment


We pay homage to artists especially African artists who have lost their lives this 2019. has put together a list of some of the musical superstars who have passed just too soon in the African music scene between January and December 2019.  According to that list, Africa lost about 10 artists in the space of 11 month: 3 in January: 2 south Africans on 5th and 7th, one Zimbabwean on 23rd. One Malian in February 8th; two others in March 13th: 1 Ghanaian and on 30th a Congolese. In June 2nd, another South African rock musician was mourned. Two others in August: Togolese on 5th; an Ivory Coast disc jockey and musician DJ Arafat on 12th August.

The African continent also lost a She was a Nigerian singer Taiwo Lijadu (of Lijadu Sisters) about a month now 9th November who died at 71. Elsewhere a headline with the caption: 15 Black Artists Who Died Too Young was also reported in March 2019. Some other artists we don’t know may have passed away that only fans know about. May their souls rest in peace as their good music continue to thrill the world going!

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DJ Arafat, 33 youngest on the list so far is our artist of the week. Nigeria, Africa as well Europeans celebrate you today DJ Arafat. He was the artist who helped birth francophone Africa’s urban music scene. DJ Arafat before his death was considered one of the most popular African artists in Francophone (French-speaking nation) countries around the world. The Ivorian DJ Arafat of the blessed memory was renowned for producing Coupé-Décalé music. kupe dekale as pronounced in French is a bass-heavy and minimal style of Ivorian popular dance music, drawing heavily from Zouglou and Congolese rhythms. It was popularised by Douk Saga in the early 2000s. DJ Arafat is said to be that artist and a drummer that gave a new breath of life to coupe-decale music. The artist who had also had collaborations with some Nigerian A-listers died after a road accident in Abidjan some 4 months ago (in August) 2019.

According to messages and pictures circulating on social media, he had been driving a motorbike and which collided with a car in a neighborhood on Sunday, 11 August 2019. He was critically injured and was taken to a hospital in Abidjan where he gave up a ghost. He had multiple motorcycle accidents in the past. He had a serious one in 2009. Ten years down the line Arafat had a fatal that took his life. Sad! Ange Didier Houon was born on 26th January 1986. He died on 12th August 2019. He was born to a music family whose world revolved around music. His mother was a popular singer as well as his father- sound engineer.

He was professionally known as DJ Arafat, Arafat Muana and various other stage names. The stage name Arafat refers to Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat; just as he stated, his Lebanese friends in the Ivory Coast gave him the nickname because he was “hardcore”. The Ivorian artist whose genre of music was Coupé-Décalé became a star of his genre around 2009 even though research says he started his music career in the early 2000s as a DJ in Yopougon, a night-life district in Abidjan before leaving for France to improve his career.

The late DJ Arafat whose career spanned fifteen years, before his death, had 11 albums primarily in the popular “Coupé-Décalé” dance music style. He had some major hits like: “Dosabado”, “Kpangor”, “Zoropoto”, “Enfant Beni” and “Moto, Moto”.

No.  4 Hommage à Jonathan (released in 2003, this song is credited as launching DJ Arafat’s successful career) The song was later included in the album   In 2012, he also won two Kora Music Awards for Best African Artist of the Year and Best Male Artist in West Africa.

, released in December 2018)

Some fans do know that Arafat was a symbol of the flashy well-dressed lifestyle which is associated with his kind of music.

No. 3 Kpankaka (a comeback song/ album title of 2012, after a long wait, he released that year. (Or play the song Dosabado)

No. 2 “Moto Moto” (last single, released in May.  he He sings about his passion for fast motorbikes.

DJ Arafat’s first song in his country to hit over one million YouTube views in less than a day)

Referring to song #2, Fortunately/unfortunately, DJ Arafat liked motorcycle. He featured them this hit ‘Moto Moto’ released in May.

Verifiable facts

  • Report had it that he overstayed his visa in France; this made him spend one month in detention as an undocumented migrant in 2005
  • Arafat later became popular in the Europe and the United States when some of the sports personalities popularized the dance steps of coupé-décalé genre.
  • BC described him as the “king” of Coupé-Décalé, which means “cut and run”, in Ivorian slang it means “to cheat someone and run away” and it began in the early 2000s during Ivory Coast’s civil war.[6] The music incorporates fast percussion, deep bass and hip-hop-style vocals.
  • After the news of his death spread, on 12 August 2019 around 1,000 of his fans assembled in Cocody suburb near the hospital where he died and mourned his death chanting “Arafat cannot die”.
  • After his burial some fans exhumed his grave after a rumor sufficed that his body was given to cult members. A crowd of his fans also gathered around his house singing some of his hits.Maurice Kouakou Bandaman, the Ivorian Culture Minister condoled his death and a tribute was held in his honour.

ALBUM: 2000           Femmes, 2009           Don de Dieu   2010   Gladiator        Nouvelle Donne, 2011            Faison la fete (via Obouo Music), 2012      Baisboula Areguede (World Music), 2012 Kpankaka, 2013            Chebeler (Obouo Productions /Music), 2013Yorogang Vol. 1 and 2013          Yorogang Vol. 2 (via Akwaba), 2017          Yorogang (Monstre Marin Corporation) and 2018          Renaissance


In 2016, his song Maplôrly won the WatsUp TV Africa Music Video Awards in the category of Best West African Video as well as winning    Best African Performance    category for his Concert a Korhogo

DJ Arafat was named “Best Artist of the Year” at the Ivorian “Coupe-decale” Awards in 2016 and 2017

In 2012, he also won two Kora Music Awards for Best African Artist of the Year and Best Male Artist in West Africa.

Nigeria misses, Abidjan misses. Africans worldwide as well Europeans miss you Arafat

One thing remains, your work will always keep you in your fans memoriesGood music attracts good memories. Be sure to live a life of impact. Guys, go over to our webpage www.theboxshowafrica.comto drop your comment.


No. 1 Maplorly

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