The growth that we have witnessed in the Kenyan music industry in the past few years is a clear indicator that indeed if we combine hard work and talent, a lot can be done.
Despite the fact that international genres of music are still widely listened to here in Kenya, It is wise to say that the rate at which local music is currently consumed is not the same as it previously was.
We have witnessed the rise of Gengetone which has been a revelation that indeed the country is flooding with talent.
Here is a list of some of the local artists who have left a mark on the international stage.
Award-winning rapper Khaligraph Jones has since his introduction to the country’s rap scene brought a revolution to the music industry.
The rapper who trades his well-thought lyrics has been known to rap about the trending topics of the tie and come up with hits after hits.
The self-proclaimed king of African rap has on multiple occasions gone on record referring to himself as the Original Gangster (OG).
He has managed to work with some of the best international rappers and still does his best to gift us music worth listening to.
Nyamari Ongegu, Popularly known as Nyashinski has since his return been a delight for most listeners across the country.
An alumnus of the rap group Kleptomaniax, Shinski, as his name is abbreviated to, rebranded his music to one that understands the lyrical needs of his audiences, and to the surprise of many, he managed to top the charts with each of his single releases.
Songs Like Aminia, Malaika, Now You Know, and Mungu Pekee made rounds on various radio and tv stations for long periods of time and received a lot of positive reviews.
Fena Gitu, a music star, has long been a strong advocate for women in the music industry. Fena, who is known for singles like “Birikicho” and “Dutch,” is proving to the world that she is a force to be reckoned with.
She is Kenya’s first female artist to release a full-length album and have it receive widespread acclaim.
Her perseverance in the music industry has seen her tweak her sound on a frequent basis in order to stay contemporary and appeal to a wider audience. Her live performances are breathtaking.
Sauti Sol is a well-known afro-pop band from Kenya. Bein Aime Baraza, Savara Mudigi, Willis Chimano, and Polycarp Otieno make up the foursome.
Since their rise to popularity, they’ve never stopped releasing new music. Their well-known singles include “Nenda Lote,” “Suzzana,” “Soma Kijana,” “Midnight Train,” “Nenda Lote,” “Isabella,” “Sober,” and “My Everything.”
Sauti sol worked on multiple albums, collaborated with prominent stars, and put on spectacular live shows, winning significant honors and setting high standards for fellow musicians.
They go on a lot of tours and have paved the way for young artists to follow in their footsteps.
They own Sol Generation Records which has brought about the rise of music stars like Bensoul and Nviiri.
Okonkwo, as he famously referred to himself, is another Kenyan who has attracted fans from all over the world with his powerful storytelling techniques through his lyricism and flow.
Mejja has performed, not just in more than 70 percent of areas in the country, but also beyond the borders. For instance, towards the end of 2021, he performed before crowds who are based as far as South Sudan.
Erick Wainaina remains a major player in the Kenyan music industry, having received two African music grants and numerous nominations. He has a long list of studio albums, singles, and a stage musical to his credit, not to mention his patriotic classic songs about Kenya.