The Good old sounds…

Usimpe roho yako,  waza kwanza,  wapi tofauti yake naooo…

The first verse and chorus to a popular tune we once jammed to. I say this presuming you reside on the same part of the earth i do and were born at least 18 years ago. Remember the time nameless was a household name and the clubs played nothing but local music? Remember saving up all your allowance money to attend the chaguo la teeniez awards? Remember the tears we shed as a nation when we lost our great artiste E-sir ? Memories are all we have. Good thing is, its these memories that spark old joys and re-live our younger selves experiences.

kleptomaniax
Tuendelee ama tusiendelee?

Maan…!

What happened to local music. The likes of Jimwat, Klepto, Longombas, Big Pin, Deux Vultures, Czar….and the list goes on. Its a fact that many of these old school artistes are still in the industry and a number even gaining success to a level beyond the country. Still, there’s just something that feels missing. I wonder what this could be? We will close our eyes and take in a deep breath to figure it out, being a matter of high importance.Now breath out….any conclusions yet ? Bingo!! I found it. Authenticity. We lost authenticity to to imitation. Influence from the west really messed up our sound. By the west, i don’t just mean the USA . I’m talking about West Africa too. The constant overplay of Nigerian music in our clubs does nothing but cripple the egos of local artistes. Ogah Ogahh!! This is not right my broddos. Gerrara-here.jpg

Then there was the death of Kapuka and Genge. In replacement of this emerged a group of aspiring Eminems and Lil Waynes… I don’t think i should criticize this lot. Their followers on Instagram are already doing enough of that. For me, i offer a word of advice. Whether its English or Swahili, do what sounds natural. Thats the success story behind alot of Kenyan rappers. Going on to the Kenyan industry in general, id say theres still alot of great things to note. Artistes like Sauti Sol are worldwide icons, Camp Mulla paved a way for Kenyan english rappers and theres still a sense of pride in local music (though greatly declined).

camp
Camp Mulla…It was good while it lasted.

I respect the evolution of sound and have nothing against the new crop of creatives. As we all know, change is inevitable. Look at Rabbit, Bahati, Kagwe Mungai, Wangeci, Fena Gitu and the infamous Octopizzo. They all are names to reckon and give respect. Even still there’s a lot of miles to cover to catch up from the great slip we had back then. The times when lyrics made sense, the time when a beat touched a part of your soul and the time when you actually felt overwhelmed cause you met a local artiste. Peace im Out..

In Memory some of our greatest Kenyan musicians.

esir
R.I.P  E-Sir
k-rupt-kenya
R.I.P  K-Rupt 
czar
C-Zar. Lost in presence but present in sound.

 

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3 thoughts on “The Good old sounds…

  1. I think the issue with Kenyan musicians is that they get into a comfort zone once fame sets in. Look at SA’s Mafikizolo. I started listening to Mafikizolo way back in 2002 when Channel O was the equivalent of Trace then.
    They were not much of a hit back then but they still had good music. Over a decade later and one member dead, Mafikizolo are still relevant, much bigger and even better.
    It’s all about consistency. Do meaningful lyrics, a good beat, have professionals in your PR team, try as much to keep up with the times. In short treat music as a career. Where you get your bread from. And I think that’s where Kenyan musicians fall short.
    I look at Usher who was singing way back in 1993 as a teen and Usher keeps changing his genres as he moves with the times. I’ve heard him do electric, pop, crunk.
    He’s not in his comfort zone. He’s still working his ass off to keep up with the changing times.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. The entertainment indusrtry in Kenya has really really changed. When I was younger, I could read Pulse magazine from beginning to end and I knew everyone in there and I could relate to each story coz the celebs then were authentic. Right now, everyone is an upcoming model, upcoming socialite. Its really sad. And you are right, we have lost our sense of originality in music too. I miss the good old days

    Like

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