Emmanuel Jal

Every time it comes down to completing this assignment, where I have to find an African hip hop artist that speaks English, I have an extremely difficult time. Today, while I was searching for artists, I came across a web page titled “The Top 15 African Hip-Hop Tracks.” One of the tracks, listed as number five amongst the fifteen, is a song called “War Child.” This song is by an artist from South Sudan named Emmanuel Jal. Emmanuel Jal became a child solider at a very young, as he describes in his song. Before I got even 15 seconds into the song, I knew that I would have to write my blog post on this artist.

The song is accompanied by a video. In the first few seconds of the video, Emmanuel is seen standing in the hall way of an eerie building, with  tears running down his face, and another image of himself crying in the background. He repeats the phrase “I believe I’ve survived for a reason, to tell my story to touched lives.” He then goes on to tell the story of how his father joined a rebellion army that he initially thought was created to fight for freedom. He was forced to join the army. He witnessed tensions rise between the Christian and Muslim regimes and soon witnessed his family lose everything that they owned. This loss included his parents. Emmanuel escaped the army and roamed Africa for four months on his own.

After listening to this one song, I needed to find out more information on this artist. I discovered his official website (http://emmanueljal.com). Emmanuel Jal has released many albums. After listening to his most recent hip hop album “See Me Mama,” released in 2012. I enjoyed the majority of the album and can add Emmanuel Jal to my list of great hip hop artists.


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