Live to work or work to live?

Artist: Skat Nati

Song: Sira

Skat Nati is a young, Ethiopian rapper who is new to the rap scene. Nati raps in Ahadu and has an upbeat, high energy rap style. He focuses on message and content in his song “Sira” (which translates to work). Sira was dropped out of nowhere in 2017 and blew fans away! Honestly, I had no idea what expect going in to this song because I hadn’t heard of the artist before. Needless to say, I am now one of those blown away fans! Sira’s a fun, exciting, and motivating song about putting in hard work on your hustle. “Win them over by my work” is one of the lyrics that stood out most to me while reading the translation of this song. He speaks not only how hard work is important, but also frames the way that work should be done in a way you don’t often hear in many American rappers’ music. “Pass on things by working hard/no matter what, don’t steal from others.”

He accompanies this song with an equally lively music video set in an area called Addis Ababa. His video depicts the many different avenues in which someone might understand “work” to be done. First, in the busy streets of the city. He raps his first verse while the many crowds of people walk all around him, moving from work to work and showing, visually, what the work we do can look like. Then he moves the setting to the athletic sense of the word. In this scene of the video he is working out in a boxing gym. Lifting weights and throwing punches while he delivers his insightful bars. Finally, he dawns his high-end clothes to travel to a party. This shot looks at the social way we might “sira” to dress and act in certain environments for the sake of fitting in.

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