2021 has seen different players and trendsetters set the pop culture on fire
The year 2021 has seen different players and trendsetters set the pop culture on fire with their contributions in various showbiz facets. In this regard, Jackson Onyango looks at the Kenya’s most outstanding performances since the year began.
It has been a mixed bag of emotions when it comes to 254’s musical geniuses.
A cohort of highs and lows both in the underground and commercial arenas with artistes most likely saving their best for the second half of the year.
Already, Mejja’s glorious return to being a solo act continues to dominate with singles such as Siskii and Tabia Za Wakenya, and Bensoul’s Nairobi enormously teasing us for clubs to re-open.
Alternative R&B singer Karun has released her much anticipated Long Play (LP) Catch A Vibe, with atmospheric tunes stacked on there.
Sol Generation’s Nviiri and Bensoul followed up with their hit Kitenge and Medicine Extended Plays, with a collage of hits for the ladies. Still on the urban confines, Khaligraph Jones picked up where he left off last year with his braggadocio singles Wavy ft Sarkodie and his anthem Luku also shaking up things as he bagged MTN Uganda’s Hip-hop Act Of The Year recently.
Rap counterpart Nyashinski released a three-peat of triumphant singles, while the YouTube pair of Otile Brown and Nadia Mukami stormed through effectively continuing to star effervescently in that regard.
In the underground-alternative spectrum, Kahu$h, Buruklyn Boyz, Kilundeezy, Mask Ke, King Korbz and SDP are some of the burgeoning niche acts breaking through the 254 into the mainstream.
They are surpassing 100,000 views on YouTube and streams on various streaming platforms, show bookings, endorsements, and more, as Kenya’s mainstream and underground finds a way to intermarry with the corporate world.
In 2021, we can’t just ignore the entertainers that vehemently remain ubiquitous from publicity stunts. Bahati and his bae Diana Marua, KRG The Don, Kabi WaJesus, Ringtone and such.
Basically the social-media famed crop of entertainers that has dedicated their lives to giving us laughs and ice-breaker content have perpetuated their agendas, remaining creative in finding ways to remain relevant in the public eye.
From making his own Forbes list, threatening God that he would quit on his salvation, to calling out Bahati into hilarious beefs, Ringtone has shown us everything. Bahati has also been a drama king.
From switching up his image and dressing up like a woman to bait blogs and tabloids and releasing a song the following day, or perhaps, Shakila claiming American music mogul P Diddy was in her DMs with no receipts.
You can never take these guys too serious or else you miss the point of having an easy laugh.
Kenya’s socialite scene has been alive and kicking all year through the Covid-19 crisis.
Do you prefer bad or good news first? Which type of person are you? Well, bad news first wins the coin toss, and no news was as tragic as the passing of singer, songwriter and producer Christian Longomba of the famed Longombas duo.
His legacy is one of the most unperturbed in Kenya’s music history. Countless hit songs and barely any scandals, or defamation to that degree, just a clean spectacular bunch of artistes that mastered the art of bringing joy to the fore of any occasion— almost flawless. We will miss him.
Incidences such as mugithi star Samidoh’s over-publicised love affair with Karen Nyamu, Kabi Wa Jesus saga of siring a baby with his cousin, the scandal involving Churchill Show comedians Professor Hamo and Jemutai, actor Pascal Tokodi having a light moment with President Uhuru Kenyatta, Tanasha Donna and baby daddy Diamond Platnumz reuniting to co-parent their son, Elsa Majimbo receiving gifts from singer Beyoncé, to Kenyan celebs going down on their knees due to financial hardships *cough cough Omosh*, the never-ending drama of Kenyan ‘Hollywood’ has no chills. Stay tuned!
The funny men and women in Kenya have been the most consistent since the year began. Flaqo Raz, Njugush, Abel Mutua, Cartoon, Crazy Kennar, Mammito, Jaymo Ule Msee, Teacher Wanjiku and Eddie Butita, are among the frontrunners in keeping ribs cracked with their hilarious parodies and skits.
The entries of Lil Maina, Kelvin Ikwara, and the whole legion of neo-generation TikTok comics, have all injected some new energy into the 254 performance arts domain.
Each has been able to be uniquely valuable and extremely funny with standout moments to boast.
As much as we hate this particular section, it’s only fair we acknowledge the good and the bad.
It’s never sweet to put anyone in the spotlight for compromising reasons, but we all make mistakes, and have to pay the price.
Only that being in the limelight, you have to take your losses in public. Can Shaffie Weru, Neville Musya and DJ Joe Mfalme please stand up?
It is disgraceful for broadcast media personalities to use such public platforms to victim-shame women who face sexual and physical abuse.
The public was outraged and even betrayed when the gender-shaming incident occurred in late March, where the three radio broadcasters made fun of a woman thrown off the 12th floor of a building live on air therefore encouraging the already ongoing unacceptable culture of violence against women.
The public and various women’s rights organisations cancelled the three. This was a disgrace on their part, and they only apologised after the public outrage.