Dread Maxim

Dread Maxim


Dread Maxim is one of reggaeman foremost of western Africa these last years. His texts anchor completely in one of the first vocations of the reggae: the rebellion and the denunciation of the disparities.


Didier Maxim Amar Mbengue was born into a traditional Serer family in Mboro, Senegal. From a very young age, Maxim knew he wanted to be a musician. Although his parents were not musicians, his father was a longtime fan of soul music and his mother was an avid listener of French music. Says Maxim, “I was raised in a musical environment well before I began my own career in music.”

After attending Saint Gabriel college, Maxim became disillusioned with school and decided to pursue his musical dreams. He initially joined the group “Family MC” where he began as a rapper. Soon after, he turned to reggae and created his own group, Big Nation Possee. During this time, he also played with the Ics Orchestra.

When Maxim decided to pursue his solo career, he changed his stage name to Dread Maxim. The name “Dread” both refers to his signature dreadlocks as well as the double-entendre meaning “dreadful/terrible.” This self-naming expresses the singer’s desire to be “dreadful in order to scare away the forces of evil.” Dubbed by the press as the “Rasta Prince” and the “Alpha Blondy of Senegal,” Dread Maxim has the sinuous voice of Rastafaris, and is very much inspired by Jamaican music, especially Bob Marley.

In 1998, Dread Maxim’s big break came when was invited by Michael Souma of Dakar FM for a radio appearance. This brought him to the attention of the German pianist and producer Steven Toeteberg, who was captivated by Maxim’s voice. The two worked together to make Maxim’s first album, “Revelation,” which was released in August 2000. The first album by a reggae singer from the Thiès region, the album features songs in French, Wolof, English and Serer, covering themes from love, peace and unity of Africa, to the plight of underprivileged children. This debut album put Dread Maxim on the Senegalese music map, but it was his second album, Jah fa ya (2003) that made him a huge sensation throughout the country. “After this album came out, I toured all of the regions of Senegal and realized that people everywhere knew my songs, and would sing along with the refrains. This told me that my message had reached the spirit of the people.”

Dread Maxim is already a household name in Senegal, and plans to make his mark internationally. Rejoyce, a production company based in Versailles, recently released his single, “Hope,” in a compilation that includes pop, rock, reggae, Gospel and electro music. Dread Maxim plans to tour internationally in 2008 and spread his music and his message to more audiences around the world.



Written By: Dread Maxim

Nous sommes du même père et de la même mère
Voila pourquoi nous sommes ici, l’union se doit
Entre frères de sang
Unissons-nous, de grâce unissons-nous
Afrique unissons-nous
L'’affaire est urgente
Et le fardeau est lourd
Mais il sera moins lourd à porter
Si nous unissons nos forces
Accomplir notre devoir de citoyen
Vivre positif, rester frères

N’'attends pas qu’on te dise ce que tu dois faire
Tout un chacun doit connaître son devoir
Ce qu'’il faut faire pour un monde meilleur
Pour que l’Afrique puisse enfin sourire
Mais chacun veut diriger
Chacun veut occuper les devants
Chacun veut assister au partage du gâteau
Prendre sa part et celle des autres
Pendant que d'’autres pleurent de faim et et de soi

Bi yen

Written By: Dread Maxim

Si on n’'y prend garde,
Un jour viendra, le Sérère disparaîtra.
Si on n’'en parle pas,
Un jour viendra, notre langue disparaîtra.
Si on n’'y chante pas, Un jour le sérère s'’en ira.

Voyons !
Comme elle est belle notre langue.
De grâce, parlons sérère.
Tu marches et tu t’'en vas.
Si tu ne sais pas où tu vas,
Retourne à la maison,
Retourne d’'où tu viens.

Oh grand-père,
Priez pour nous.
Frêres, retournons aux sources.
Oh ancêtres ,
Ne nous abandonnez pas.

Unis, nous irons de l’'avant,
Communions pour une même cause,
Jah nous assistera dans notre tâche

Bâtis ta case au village et
Arrête de faire le fainéant.
Retournons aux sources
Bâtir notre nation
Car elle est à nous tous ;
Ensemble bâtissons-la.

Main dans la main
Nous irons de l’'avant
Et le bon Dieu nous aidera.

Quand viendra pour moi l’'instant du grand repos,
Raccompagnez-moi au village
Auprès de mon grand pére Amath Thiolké.

Le lion s’'est couché.
L'’affaire est urgente,
Le fardeau est lourd,
Mais il sera moins lourd à porter
Si nous unissons nos forces,
Remplir notre devoir de citoyen
Cultiver notre part du champ.

Unissons nos champs
Mangeons dans le même plat.

Nous sommes du même père
Et de la même mère.
Voila pourquoi
Nous sommes ici aujourd’hui.
Union se doit entre frêres,
So Afrique.


Written By: Dread Maxim

Jah sun will rise again
A new day will come again
Un autre jour un autre combat
Un nouvel espoir

Un sourire innocent
De la bouche d'un enfant
Un regard absent
La joie d'une maman

Une nouvelle raison de vivre
Dans une humanité en dérive
Une raison de vivre
Un messie arrive

Un soleil se lève
Un autre jour se lève
Avec son cortège de pièges
Ouyè ouyè ouyèna

Jah sun will rise again
A new day will come again
Un autre jour un autre combat
Un nouvel espoir

Et le ciel s'assombrira
Tout espoir s'en ira
Dis-moi, ce que demain sera

When da evening come
And da sun gonna sleep
Sadness in my life

Yes I hope this night
Da moon will come and shine
And give a little light into my heart

Jah sun will rise again
Again and again again and again


2000 "Revelation" k7 sortie a dakar
2003 "Jah Fire" k7 sortie a dakar
2005 cd "jah Fire" taken out in France sous le label rejoyce ; www.rejoyce.fr

Set List

one hour for show
1 Rack Ndaw
2 Black Rebels
3 Jah Fire
4 To be one
5 Mbollo
6 Hope
7 Bi yen