- Akan: Medɔ wo! What you thought I wouldn't add my mother tongue? Some folks can't say what "thank you" is in their lingua francas. Such a fracas. Don't belittle this at all at all.
- Ga: Mi sumo bo! I learnt this through songs. Especially, Amandzeba's Dede. That's such a classic highlife track.
- Ewe: Mi lɔnwɔ! Would you forgive me if I said I (pretty much) learnt this from a Daddy Lumba song? I don't remember which but the Ghanaian Michael Jackson taught me.
- Hausa: Ina sonki. After loving how D-Flex sang Hausa lines while featuring on K. K. Fosu and Ofori Amponsah songs, I had to learn to this one. From who? I don't remember.
- Swahili: Nakupenda! That famous Malaika song should take the credit for this one. And then all my East African friends I befriended during my MIT times.
- Zulu: Ngiyakuthanda. Phelele Fakudze taught me this one.
- Siswati: Ngiyakutsandza. Phelele taught me this 1 2. :-).
- Xhosa: Ndiyakuthanda. All you have to do is remove one letter from the Zulu phrase. If my name was really Siyabonga Mandela, maybe I too would be able to speak and understand 10 languages.
- Yoruba: Mo ni ife re! Funny enough, I learnt this from a song sang by a South African, KB. And this was around the times South Africa and Nigeria were at a pop culture war with things movies like Jerusalema and District 9 seemed to say.
- Igbo: A fum gi nanya. After Ifunanya gave P-Square extra time in the limelight and many million hits on YouTube, I wondered what the word meant. And then I learnt this in Igbo too.
- Luganda: Nkwagala! I learnt this and other ways to say "I Love You" via this popular song by Tanzania's Lady Jaydee called "Distance".
- Kinyarwanda: Ndagukunda! Another one from the Distance song. I was sure to get confirmation from my Rwandan bestie Matilda.
- Lingala: Nalingiyo. I learnt this Congolese word from the "Distance" song as well. And then it was reinforced by listening to a healthy dose of Barbara Kanam songs.
- Dagbani: Mbora nyorami. Barcamp Tamale things o! Thanks to Ali Bukari Maiga for the reminder too.
- Amharic: Afekrishalehou! After hearing say what "beautiful" in Amharic was, I had to learn this one next.
- Nyanja: Ni kukonda. Yes, you guessed right. I learnt this from hearing it in Zed music and then I confirmed from some Zambians.
- Wolof: Damala nob! I want to be able to say this to Viviane Ndour one day. Thanks to Amen Edem for teaching me this.
- Shona: Ndinokuda. I learnt from my Zimbabwean friends. Never got to learn this via the music.
- Changana: Naku randza. I've made friends with many Mozambicans via Museke. Lizha James also once sang this song. Kanimambo to Hamilton Chambela for teaching me this one.
- Setswana: Ke a go rata. Learnt it around the time when I was watching that No 1 Ladies Detective Agency series set in Botswana religiously.
- Fang: Ma nzing wa. I learnt this recently from a Gabonese chic I befriended just this year. She had to do her homework after I asked her and texted me later.
- Dioula: M'bi fe. I learnt this from a couple of Ivorian ladies just this year. This is after I discovered where I could hear Coupe Decale in a club regularly in Accra :-)
- Moore: Maam nonga fom. After getting used to a song called "Fo noga Burkina Faso" and finding its meaning, I learnt this one as well from a Burkinababe.
Sunday, March 31, 2013
Learnt how to say "I Love You" in 23 African languages
If you listen to songs a lot, you will pick out how to say "I love you" quite quickly. Since I have grown to listen to music from all over the continent and used that to build Museke.com, I am well-versed in saying that "1-4-3" line in many mother tongues. Let me show you ;-)