“Nairobi” – BURUKLYN BOYZ
Representation is central to the art of hip-hop and rap. In BURUKLYN BOYZ’s 2021 single “Nairobi” they do just that. BURUKLYN BOYZ are a powerful hip hop duo made up of rappers Mr. Right and Ajay. Both rappers have also had success in the music industry, making them a powerful mix. They grew up in
SilversTone Barz is ‘Doing It Major’
Nairobi-based rapper, SilversTone Barz, first stepped into the booth in 2014 and has been on the rise since. She discovered her love for hip-hop when she was seven. SilversTone’s passion and drive led her to build a professional studio in her house early in her career in hopes of improving her artistry. Her biggest inspiration
BoiBlacc – the wire
BoiBlacc is a rapper based in Nairobi, Kenya. He’s constantly working on new music and has unique music videos. ‘The wire’ was released in 2021. BoiBlacc explained that ‘The Wire’ ”is a song with thematic influences drawn from the city of Nairobi, more specifically the profiling of young men by both the police and society
Chris Kaiga – I WANT (ft. Mutoriah)
Chris Kaiga is a Kenyan-based artist (rapper) born and raised in Nairobi, Kenya. His love and passion for music started in 2009 with the ambition of being a music producer but soon changed after recording his first single in 2011. He’s had hits with songs like ‘Zimenice’, ‘Niko on’ and ‘Bundaz’. He takes a distinct
HHAP EP. 69: Industry Vet Buddha Blaze on the nature of the music industry in Kenya and Beyond
Buddha Blaze is a Kenyan blogger, podcaster, and music industry insider with over 20 years of experience. He has worked throughout the continent and the diaspora with artists and producers from around the world. He was a major part of the British Council’s WaPi (Words & Pictures) initiative, which showcased hip hop, poetry, fashion breakdance, and graffiti culture in Nairobi. He has also consulted numerous artists in the business and worked on several projects with international artists and producers. A major figure in the Kenyan hip hop scene, he was recently seen on the Nairobi-based What’s Good Africa?, the only show on P. Diddy’s RevoltTV to focus on hip hop culture in Africa and one of the only shows airing on a US network to focus on hip hop culture in Africa. In this conversation, Buddha Blaze talks a lot about the changes he’s seen in the industry over the years and some of the skills artists need to navigate the industry today. He also talks about his involvement in the growth of the cultural scene in Nairobi, which has grown to become the largest music, film, and contemporary art scene in East Africa. Buddha Blaze is Twitter @ItsBuddhaBlaze and Instagram @buddhablazeworld Intro and outro beat by Nigerian producer @teckzilla108 This episode is part of the special series that we did in partnership with Words Beats & Life. The series was recorded and live streamed with students in the Hip Hop in Africa class at Howard University and George Washington University.
The Kenyan hip-hop industry continues to evolve with the many social trends that arise. The appreciation of Black Excellence has recently taken the Black community around the world through a journey of self-reflection and self-appreciation. This trend is particularly seen through the celebration of traditionally Black hairstyles, darker skinned women, and African culture. This is
HHAP EP. 65: Sugar Emcee on the History and Dynamics of Kenya’s Hip Hop Industry
Sugar joins the conversations with students in the Hip Hop in Africa class from her home in Nairobi. She was born in Nairobi and grew up in Kiambu, just outside of Nairobi. After signing a deal with Phoenix Records in 2007, she would release three albums. While not new to the hip hop scene in Kenya, she is an underground artist who talks about navigating Kenya’s entertainment industry. Nairobi has been praised for going through what some call a cultural renaissance as the music and arts scenes are gaining international attention. Sugar talks about being in the midst of that scene and navigating that scene as a woman. Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sugar_emcee/ Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/sugar-emcee/tracks YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZQfC43VjtWIbvXVxYD-2YA Linktree: https://smarturl.it/4yviic
Khaligraph Jones – Passion over FAME
Khaligraph Jones, also known as Brian Ouko was born in Nairobi Kenya on June 12th, 1990. He grew up in Kayole, which is a rougher area within Nairobi. His struggles within this impoverished community influences much of his work, and this relatable narrative gained him massive popularity within Kenya and on the international scale. According
Monski: Kenya’s Need to Know Rapper
It’s no secret that the “femcees” of Kenyan hip hop have been dominating the industry and redefining gender roles with performances over the past decade that deliver both hard bars and poetic lyricism. But, there’s one artist on the scene that has been steadily climbing the charts and mastering her craft at unprecedented rates: Monski.
Wangechi Waweru speaks about abusive relationships in her song “Comeback”.
Although female African emcees emerged years later than their male counterparts, some of these female rappers have been able to create a niche for themselves. Immersed in a predominantly male culture, these rappers have been able to voice the opinion of women who share similar experiences. By representing women’s issues, they have been able to