Gnonnas Pedro

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Gnonnan Sossou Pierre Kouassivi, known by the stage name Gnonnas Pedro was a singer and musician from Lokossa,[1][2] Benin. He is perhaps best known as the lead singer of Africando between 1995 and his death in 2004, but had been well known in his home country of Benin and beyond since the 1960s.[citation needed]

Pedro led his own bands Pedro y Sus Panchos, later reforming as Gnonnas Pedro and his Dadjes Band, before joining the long-lived Orchestre Poly-rythmo de Cotonou.[citation needed]

As a singer, songwriter, instrumentalist, and dancer, Pedro embraced many styles of music including highlife and juju. Pedro is credited with updating the traditional Agbadja style of his home region, creating Modern Agbadja. He sang in many different languages, including Minad, Adja, Yoruba, French, English, and Spanish.[3] Pedro produced the song "Feso Jaiye",[4] which became a hit and was performed by many bands at the 2nd All-Africa Games in 1973.


Gnonnas Pedro died on 12 August 2004, age 61, from prostate cancer in a hospital of Cotonou, Benin.[citation needed]



  • Dadjes: The Band Of Africa (1975)
  • Gnonnas Pedro (Disco Stock, 1979)
  • El Cochechivo (Ledoux, 1981)
  • Agbadja (Syllart, 1999)
  • Irma koi (Syllart, 1999)
  • The best of Gnonnas Pedro (2003)

With Africando[edit]

  • Gombo Salsa (Stern's Africa STCD1071, 1996)
  • Baloba (Stern's Africa STCD1082, 1998)
  • Mandali (Stern's Africa STCD1092, 2000) Credited to Africando All Stars. Released in France as Betece
  • Live! (Sono CDS8907, double CD, 2001) Out of print
  • Martina (Stern's Africa STCD1096, 2003)
  • Ketukuba (Stern's Africa STCD1103, 2006) Released after his death.


  1. ^ Gnonnas Pedro and His Dadjes Band: Singing Across the Continent; accessed 8 July 2012.
  2. ^ Accessible at Gnonnas Pedro, Le « Dadjè » de l’afro-cubain s’est éteint, accessed on July 8, 2012
  3. ^ Accessible at Gnonnas Pedro, Le « Dadjè » de l’afro-cubain s’est éteint; accessed 8 July 2012.
  4. ^ Accessible at Golden days highlife #13, 13 minutes into MP3, accessed 30 March 2008

External links[edit]