Kenyan artists need to think outside the box

The emergence of of the new crop of Kenyan musicians is good proof that all the players in the local entertainment industry should think outside the box. It is what it is.

Also read: New age musicians are unpredictable and that’s the beauty of music

Every time you listen to a song by Zzero Sufuri, Ochunglo Family, Sailors Gang, Boondocks Gang, Rico Gang and the likes you should remember that we would not be here today if Ethic didn’t look at music from a different perspective.

Ochunglo Family
Ochunglo Family

For a long time, Kenya had a copy paste approach to music. Musicians would wait for the likes of Nonini, Jua Cali and Nameless to release a song then they would hit the studio and release a song that is similar to the ones by these artists.

Back then, Genge and Kapuka were the in-thing. Funny enough, nobody thought they should invent a new sound and own it until Ethic came along with Lamba Lolo in 2018 and changed the game.

Interestingly, the same thing is now happening with the Kenyan sound. Every artist, even the established ones, is now making music that you can tell borrows a lot from the sound that Ethic introduced us to.

Ethic Figa

This is a good sign that most Kenyan artists are afraid of thinking outside the box. Instead of copying a sound that already exists why don’t they come up with a distinct sound that they can own?

The Kenyan industry can only grow if we diversify i.e. have different approaches to music so that even the people who don’t feel the wamlambez and lamba lolo vibe can have something that they can listen to.

Octopizzo Vs Khaligraph: Who will survive the new-age music revolution?

Truth be told, the new-age (new wave) Kenyan musicians are giving established musicians a run for their money, even the likes of Octopizzo and Khaligraph. Allow me to explain my line of thought.

Also read: New-age musicians are giving established artists nightmares!

At the end of the day, even if their music genres are different, they are competing for the same fanbase, which is you and I, and as you know there can only be one winner so it’s either the new age artists beat the established artists or vice versa.

Khaligraph Jones
Khaligraph Jones

Both Octopizzo and Khaligraph were doing well before the emergence of new age artists because they were both releasing street music i.e. songs that are in Sheng and relate to the struggles that the ordinary person goes through.

If you’re keen then I am sure you have noticed that Khaligraph has stayed the course. On the other hand, Octopizzo has veered off. In the recent past, he has has changed his style so much so that you would think that he no longer cares about his local fans.

Both Octopizzo and Khaligraph have been trying to surmount the pressure that they are getting from new-age artist and it got to a point where they bowed to pressure. The way I see it they had no choice.

Khaligraph Jones

If you listen to Octopizzo’s Zikishika, there is a verse where he drops lamba lolo. In Leave Me Alone, Khaligraph pays homage to Zzero Sufuri and the likes. As the saying goes, if you can’t beat them join them.

This got me thinking, who between the two can survive the new-age music revolution because let’s be honest, these youngins have taken over. From the fans, to music streaming sites and YouTube to local TV and radio stations to gigs, all people waiting to consume is new-age musicians.

Between Octopizzo and Khaligraph Jones, who do you think can keep up with the new-age artists?

Ethic Vs Sailors Gang: Which group is the baddest?

People have been going crazy over Sailors Gang’s dubbed Wamlambez over the last few days and doing challenges where some says ‘Wamlambez’ and you reply ‘Wamyonyez’. You would be tempted to think the song was just released yet it came out in April.

Also read: New-age musicians are giving established artists nightmares!

It took me back to the day Ethic dropped Lamba Lolo and how it used to be played everywhere. From clubs,  local radio and TV stations, to gigs everyone had that song on repeat so much so that it seemed like a national anthem.


Before long, other groups who had a similar music approach started emerging and then came Sailors Gang, a group that is made up of Miracle Baby, Shalkido, Lexxy Yung, Masilver and Qoqosjuma in April this year.

The new kids on the block have taken over never mind the fact that its barely four months since they made their debut in the local entertainment scene. What they have achieved is impressive by any standards.

You might hate me for this but sometimes I compare them with Ethic. You see, the Lamba Lolo hit makers released a new song in June, people spoke about it for a few weeks and it almost as if the hype died.

The reason I’m saying this because Wamlambez, which was released in April, has more talkability than Ethic’s most recent release. It’s the new national anthem. The way I see it, this begs a lot of questions.

Sailors Gang
Sailors Gang

One of the questions is, which group is the baddest between Ethic and Sailors Gang? Tell us below.

Watch Sailors Gang’s latest release dubbed Queen B here.

Zzero Sufuri Vs Ethic: Who’s really the baddest?

I’m sure you are aware that Zzero Sufuri and Ethic don’t see eye. Their beef is so bad that the former dissed the Lamba Lolo hit makers in his latest release dubbed Matisha.

Zzero Sufuri

In the song, there’s a part where Zzero says, “Si ni kumatisha, wako lamba lolo isha tubore, hujaskia ma morio flani wakali wametoka Dago si wamekam na ingine mbaya si unasikia vile inadunda bro.”

I’m not sure where their bad blood started because they don’t even come from the same area. Zzero is from Dagoretti while Ethic is from Eastlands, specifically Umoja. So this is not even about regional supremacy or is it?

Admittedly, both Ethic – which is made up of Rekless, Swat, Zilla and Seska – and Zzero Sufuri are all talented. However, their styles are as different as day and night. If you are a fan of both artists then I know you agree with me on this.

To a large extent, Ethic’s music is raunchy. Most of their songs are about sex, women’s rears, boobs and genitalia and what not. Put simply, they are willing to cross every line to become a household name.

Ethic Figa

But that doesn’t mean that they are not talented. If you listen to Ethic’s song keenly, you’ll notice some good rhymes and wordplay. Perhaps this is why most people are hooked to their music despite the fact that it’s explicit.

On the other hand, Zzero Sufuri’s music is not raunchy at all. He infuses dancehall with a small element of mumble rap and the outcome is totally amazing. I’m not even exaggerating!

In as much as their styles are different, at the end of the day one of them must be better than the other. So, here’s my question. According to you, who is the baddest between Zzero Sufuri and Ethic?

Watch Ethic’s latest release dubbed Figa below.