Orchestre Baka Gbiné have 2 lineups. One performs traditional music, passed down over thousands of years, and the other performs contemporary songs that they write themselves and perform with guitars, percussion and drums. Like with most other things Baka, although roles are demarcated, they are not strictly enforced and there is flow between them.


The music and dance of the Baka comes from thousands of years of unbroken forest tradition. The women have always sung yelli, strange and beautiful wordless yodelling, unaccompanied at night as a vital part of hunting large animals. It is also sung accompanied by drums and dance during ceremonies, parties and when the spirit takes them.

The Baka also make their own instruments such as the ngombi and the ieta.

In January 2010 20 members of the community at Gbiné travelled to Limbe, 3 days journey by bus to the other end of the country, where they performed at Under the Volcano Festival. They joined dancers and musicians from 7 other regions of Cameroon to represent their region in a national festival of traditional music and dance organised by Global Music Exchange (GME).

Since then they have performed around Cameroon including on CRTV's "Tam Tam Weekend" and a performance for the British High Commissioner.

In March 2014, Global Music Exchange organised the Forest Voices Tour where Baka Gbiné toured other Baka communities.

Baka Gbiné have produced 3 albums of traditional music:

  Heart of the Forest
  recorded in 1992

  [ LISTEN ]   :  [ iTunes ]


Royalties from all Baka Gbiné's recordings go back to them via GME


Pelembir and Mbeh were both playing guitar before Martin and Su arrived with another guitar and a mandolin in 1992. It was the music that they played together on this first visit that inspired the creation of Baka Beyond. Since then many more people have learned the guitar and as a group they are in great demand locally. They have also played in the cities of Douala, Yaounde and Brazzaville, as well as further afield in Europe.

Baka Gbiné have recorded 2 guitar-based albums, Gati Bongo (2006) and Kopolo (2012). Their songs mix fast but gentle syncopated rhythms with guitar lines inspired by the Congolese music that they hear on the radio. Their traditional songs and rhythms are incorporated into songs filled with insightful lyrics.

In 2006 Baka Gbiné toured UK with the British band, Baka Beyond. An album, Baka Live was recorded during this tour.
Baka Live - [ LISTEN ]  :  [ BUY CD ]  :  [ download ]

The following video is the track Hélène, recorded live at the Zodiac in Oxford, UK.

more videos

Fombo and Kanya performing the Yelli Dance

Booma Dance at Under the Volcano Festival

Mokoloba playing the ngombi na peke

Metouli on tour in UK with Baka Beyond

Baka Gbine in concert on Congo border

Lekeweh dancing with De of Baka Beyond

pelembir performing in the Music House

Mbeh recording at Lupé

All royalties earned from the sale of the Baka's music goes to them via the registered charity, Global Music Exchange, so be sure that if you buy their music you are making a difference!

You can make a donation to Global Music Exchange using the button below:

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