|Genres||Hip hop, alternative hip hop|
|Years active||2005 – present|
Wawesh is a hip-hop artist and producer from Kenya. The Sweden-based MC has been creating a buzz in Swahili-speaking communities in Eastern Africa and the Diaspora via his three consecutive hit singles (Mjanja, Wawero and Wasanii) plus highly acclaimed debut album, “It’s Meant To Be”.
Hip hop music, also called hip-hop or rap music, is a music genre developed in the United States by inner-city African Americans in the late 1970s which consists of a stylized rhythmic music that commonly accompanies rapping, a rhythmic and rhyming speech that is chanted. It developed as part of hip hop culture, a subculture defined by four key stylistic elements: MCing/rapping, DJing/scratching with turntables, break dancing, and graffiti writing. Other elements include sampling beats or bass lines from records, and rhythmic beatboxing. While often used to refer solely to rapping, "hip hop" more properly denotes the practice of the entire subculture. The term hip hop music is sometimes used synonymously with the term rap music, though rapping is not a required component of hip hop music; the genre may also incorporate other elements of hip hop culture, including DJing, turntablism, scratching, beatboxing, and instrumental tracks.
Kenya, officially the Republic of Kenya, is a country in Africa with 47 semiautonomous counties governed by elected governors. At 580,367 square kilometres (224,081 sq mi), Kenya is the world's 48th largest country by total area. With a population of more than 52.2 million people, Kenya is the 27th most populous country. Kenya's capital and largest city is Nairobi while its oldest city and first capital is the coastal city of Mombasa. Kisumu City is the third largest city and a critical inland port at Lake Victoria. Other important urban centres include Nakuru and Eldoret.
Sweden, officially the Kingdom of Sweden, is a Scandinavian Nordic country in Northern Europe. It borders Norway to the west and north and Finland to the east, and is connected to Denmark in the southwest by a bridge-tunnel across the Öresund, a strait at the Swedish-Danish border. At 450,295 square kilometres (173,860 sq mi), Sweden is the largest country in Northern Europe, the third-largest country in the European Union and the fifth largest country in Europe by area. Sweden has a total population of 10.2 million of which 2.5 million have a foreign background. It has a low population density of 22 inhabitants per square kilometre (57/sq mi). The highest concentration is in the southern half of the country.
He started as a producer in 1993.
Under his alias, Kiboy, he also co-owns BlaO Entertainment, a production company involved in many projects including work for international names like Nas, Talib Kweli, Floetry and Capone-N-Noreaga.
Nasir bin Olu Dara Jones, known professionally as Nas, is an American rapper, songwriter and entrepreneur. The son of jazz musician Olu Dara, Nas has released eight consecutive platinum and multi-platinum albums and has sold over 30 million records worldwide. He is also an entrepreneur through his own record label; he serves as associate publisher of Mass Appeal magazine and the co-founder of Mass Appeal Records.
Talib Kweli Greene is an American hip hop recording artist, entrepreneur, and social activist. Kweli earned recognition early on through his collaboration with fellow Brooklyn rapper Mos Def, when they formed the group Black Star. Kweli's musical career continued with solo success including collaborations with producers and rappers Kanye West, Just Blaze, and Pharrell Williams. His most recent solo album is titled Radio Silence, released in 2017. In 2011, Kweli founded his own record label, Javotti Media.
Floetry was an English R&B duo comprising Marsha Ambrosius and Natalie Stewart. The group recorded two studio albums, one live album, and sold over 1,500,000 records worldwide. Formed in 1997, Floetry started on the performance poetry stage. They are two of the many artist responsible for developing the genre that is now known as Neo-Soul, while also popularizing the use of poetry and spoken word throughout music. They have worked with many musicians and artist including: Jill Scott, Queen Latifah, Michael Jackson, Common, The Roots, Bilal, and more founders of Neo-Soul.
Having gained experience in developing artists and creating hits for others, Kiboy wanted to deliver something for the Swahili speaking hip hop community and so he started the Wawesh project combining western-influenced beats with Swahili lyrical flow.
His late-2005 debut single, "Mjanja" was spread worldwide, was a huge hit in Africa and remains a major anthem in Kenya. The follow-up single, "Wawero" with its highly produced video cemented his status in pan-Africa as an artist with serious intent. The release of his highly acclaimed album "It's Meant To Be" augmented this success.
Musically, the album derives inspiration from a variety of sources including African folk, Afro-American Soul, Ethnic European Sounds and other esoteric sources.
In between recordings, Wawesh has rapidly cemented his popularity in Africa, Europe and the diaspora gaining appearances across various media. He was commissioned to contribute to a major BBC initiative (Africa Lives on the BBC/Africa 2005), appeared on BBC 1Xtra's DestiNation Africa (DNA) show, received regular rotation in clubs and major radio networks in Kenya, had a number 1 video on MTV Base Africa for the single "Wawero", was playlisted on MTV Base Europe, and performed in a variety of major shows in Kenya and Europe such as Chaguo La Teenies, Afrolution, K’Naan's Tour, and Jamhuri Day UK.
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters are at Broadcasting House in Westminster, London, and it is the world's oldest national broadcasting organisation and the largest broadcaster in the world by number of employees. It employs over 20,950 staff in total, 16,672 of whom are in public sector broadcasting. The total number of staff is 35,402 when part-time, flexible, and fixed-contract staff are included.
MTV is an American pay television channel owned by Viacom Media Networks and headquartered in New York City. The channel was launched on August 1, 1981, and originally aired music videos as guided by television personalities known as "video jockeys" (VJs). At first, MTV's main target demographic was young adults, but today it is primarily teenagers, particularly high school and college students.
He also co-founded Watu Wangu - a collective of Kenyan artists in Europe and attracted a sponsorship-deal from Jamhuri wear (as endorsed by Jay-Z, 50 Cent, Akon), directed his most recent video for "Wasanii", and produced an award winning album that was nominated for a Grammy Award.
Shawn Corey Carter, known professionally as Jay-Z, is an American rapper, songwriter, record producer, entrepreneur, and record executive. Considered one of the best rappers of all time, he is regarded as one of the world's most significant cultural icons and has been a global figure in popular culture for over two decades.
Curtis James Jackson III, known professionally as 50 Cent, is an American rapper, singer, songwriter, actor, television producer, entrepreneur, and investor. Born in the South Jamaica neighborhood of the borough of Queens, Jackson began selling drugs at age twelve during the 1980s crack epidemic. He later began pursuing a musical career and in 2000 he produced Power of the Dollar for Columbia Records, but days before the planned release he was shot and the album was never released. In 2002, after Jackson released the compilation album Guess Who's Back?, he was discovered by Eminem and signed to Shady Records, under the aegis of Dr. Dre's Aftermath Entertainment and Interscope Records.
Aliaune Damala Badara Akon Thiam is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, entrepreneur, philanthropist and actor. He rose to prominence in 2004 following the release of "Locked Up", the first single from his debut album, Trouble.
Music listened by Tanzanians stretches from (Bolingo) traditional African music to the string-based taarab to a distinctive hip hop known as bongo flava.
Tanzanian Hip-hop, also known as Bongo Flava, encompasses a large variety of different sounds, but it is particularly known for heavy synth riffs and an incorporation of Tanzanian pop. There is some debate over whether Bongo Flava, which has emerged as a defined pop movement, can really still be qualified under the overarching term "hip hop" and not a movement unto itself, when it is beginning to develop a distinctive sound that differs from hardcore rap or, for example, the Maasai Hip-hop of X Plastaz, who use the tradition of the Maasai tribe as the focal point for their sound and style. A form of Tanzanian hip hop is Bongo Flava. Bongo flava, derived from the Swahili word "ubongo", incorporates hip hop, Indian filmi, taraab, muzik wa dansi, and dancehall beats. It all began in the 1980s when Tanzanian teenagers were really interested in the American hip hop scene. At first, they took American beats and rapped to them. As the youth rapped, the hip hop in Tanzania began to develop into a mix of traditional and localized hip hop scene. As a result, it began a wave of interest from other people in Eastern Africa.
The culture of Kenya consists of multiple trends. Kenya has no single prominent culture that identifies it. It instead consists of various cultures practiced by the country's different communities.
Klear Kut is a five-member Ugandan ensemble consisting of Navio (rapper), Papito, Abba Lang, JB, and The mith.
Juma Nature a.k.a. Sir Nature is a Tanzanian hip hop artist and vocalist. He is the founder and member of a Temeke group called Wanaume, an informal group of rappers from the poor side of Dar es Salaam. In his last album, "Bongo Flava: Swahili Rap from Tanzania", many of the lyrics which are in his tracks include current problems within his country. Some problems he raps about include, "HIV/AIDS, the difficulty of meeting basic needs, class and wealth barriers, and holding your head high despite everything". One of Nature's well renowned songs is "Umoja wa Tanzania" which talks about a celebration within Tanzania and the sense of unity that it has exemplified. “Utajijua” from Juma Nature's brand new album Ubin-Adam Kazi, is a song about people who like to poke their noses into others’ business.
Kenyan hip hop is a genre of music, and a culture that covers various forms and sub genres of hip-hop and rap originating from Kenya. It is commonly a combination of Swahili and English as well as Sheng and a variety of tribal languages.
Joseph Haule, popularly known as Professor Jay, is a Tanzanian hip hop artist and member of the Tanzanian parliament for Mikumi constituency. He is one of the prominent representatives of the "Bongo Flava" Tanzanian hip hop subgenre, which mixes elements from both Western hip hop and the Tanzanian tradition.
Hubert Mbuku Nakitare, commonly known by his stage name Nonini, is a Kenyan hip hop recording artist, entertainer, radio presenter, businessman and philanthropist. He is often referred to as "the Godfather of Genge" and is well known for his controversial and sexually explicit lyrics.
Bill Urale, known by his stage name King Kapisi, is a New Zealand hip hop recording artist. He was the first hip hop artist in New Zealand to receive the prestigious Silver Scroll Award at the APRA Awards for Songwriter of the Year for his single Reverse Resistance in 1999, which followed on the popular release of his debut single Sub-Cranium Feeling. Kapisi is of Samoan origin, with his stage name being the Samoan word for 'cabbage'.
Jamhuri Wear is a Safari Lifestyle African clothing company.
Paul Julius Nunda, better known by his stage name Jua Cali, is a Kenyan hip hop artist. In 2000, together with record producer Clemo, he founded Calif Records where he has been ever since. Jua Cali performs in Swahili and Sheng in a popular Kenyan style of rapping called genge.
Shawn Antoine Ivy, known as Domino,, is an American rapper, Being a Crip himself, he auditioned for the Bloods & Crips project in the early 1990s. He is the first rapper, in order of appearance, in the title track Bangin' on Wax on the album of the same name. His debut album, Domino, spawned two major hits in the United States, including the Top 10 hit "Getto Jam", which reached No. 7 on the Billboard Hot 100. Several further albums were released, and Domino continued to score hits on the R&B charts into the 2000s (decade).
"Swing Ya Rag" is a song by American hip hop recording artist T.I., released August 26, 2008 as the third single from his highly acclaimed sixth studio album Paper Trail (2008). The song features vocals and instrumental production from American music producer Swizz Beatz, who raps the chorus. T.I. performed the song at the 2008 BET Hip Hop Awards and at the 2009 New Year's Eve Special on NBC. The song is also featured in the 2009 video game expansion pack, Grand Theft Auto IV: The Lost and Damned.
Jude Abaga, better known as M.I Abaga, is a Nigerian hip hop recording artist and record producer. He has been the CEO of Chocolate City since June 2015. He won Best Hip Hop and Best New Act at the 2009 MTV Africa Music Awards, and was nominated in the Best International Act category at the BET Awards 2010. He rose to prominence in 2006 when his song "Crowd Mentality" became popular in his hometown of Jos. His critically acclaimed debut studio album Talk About It was released on 11 December 2008. The LP was succeeded by MI 2: The Movie (2010). Four years after that, he released The Chairman as his third studio album. M.I Abaga released the playlist Rendezvous in February 2018. In August of the same year, he released his fourth studio album A Study On Self Worth: Yxng Dxnzl.
Espen Sørensen, known professionally as Mzungu Kichaa, is a Danish singer and musician. He was born in Denmark, but grew up in Tanzania, where his parents worked in the field of Development Cooperation. They went there when he was six years old. In Tanzania, he learned to speak Swahili fluently, and later on, he got involved in music and particularly in the production of Bongo Flava at Bongo Records. The latest outcome of his interest in East African music is his first solo album "Tuko Pamoja".
Mohombi Nzasi Moupondo is a Swedish-Congolese singer, songwriter and dancer. He grew up in Norsborg and Kista near Stockholm. Mohombi was RedOne's first signing to 2101 Records in joint venture with Universal Music Group. From 2000 to 2008, Mohombi was part of the Swedish hip hop group Avalon with his brother Djo Moupondo. Mohombi released his debut solo single "Bumpy Ride" in August 2010. The single became a worldwide hit, and charted in the top-ten in several countries, and was followed by his debut studio album, MoveMeant in February 2011.
Sauti Sol is a Kenyan afro-pop band formed in Nairobi by vocalists Bien-Aimé Baraza, Willis Chimano and Savara Mudigi in 2005. Initially an a cappella group, guitarist Polycarp Otieno joined before they named themselves Sauti.
Thato Madonsela, better known by his stage name L-Tido, is a South African hip hop recording artist from Alexandra, Johannesburg. He is best known for being one of the few independent artists in the country to reach commercial success, winning the Best Newcomer in Africa award at the 2010 Channel O Music Video Awards and receiving numerous other award nominations. His solo album All or Nothing only sold 8 hard copies, he was managed by Vusi Leeuw at the time.
Daniel Lubwama Kigozi is a Ugandan rapper. Starting off his career, he was part of the award-winning Hip hop group Klear Kut that introduced the term "Ugaflow" to describe Uganda's hip hop scene. Navio is best known for his successful solo career with hits such as "Ngalo", "Bugumu", "One & Only", and "On and On".
Nsikayesizwe David Junior Ngcobo, known professionally as Nasty C, is a South African rapper, songwriter and record producer. Born in Diepkloof, Soweto, Johannesburg and raised in Durban, Kwa-Zulu Natal, he gained public recognition after releasing his mixtape Price City (2012) which produced the successful single Juice Back.