Born in the village of Minta in East Cameroon, Richard Bona grew up in a home filled with music. At the tender age of five, he started performing in public singing in the village church with his mother and four sisters. After moving from Cameroon to Paris and finally to New York in 1995, Bona became one of the most in-demand collaborators on the international Jazz scene, working with a remarkable array of artists, such as Paul Simon, Harry Belafonte, Chaka Khan, Queen Latifah, Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, Salif Keita, Kazumi, Branford Marsalis, David Sanborn, Regina Carter, Bobby McFerrin and Randy Brecker to name a few.
Bona's unique style incorporates influences from the around the world. His first three solo albums, 'Scenes From My Life' (1998), 'Reverence' (2001), and 'Munia' (2003) revealed a wonderful storyteller, a surprising musician, and a spellbinding vocalist. Billboard was quoted as saying Bona is "tremendously appealing" and the Los Angeles Times made note of his "utter musical fearlessness." Newsweek thought his songs had "irresistible hooks" and of his live shows The Washington Post mused; "Bona's angelic voice stopped conversation cold" and "his acoustic guitar solos were the essence of beauty."