Nonini, a pioneer of genge music, has apologized to Kenyans for supporting the Kenya Kwanza administration. In a statement posted on social media, Nonini said that he regrets his support after seeing the direction that the country is taking under the new government.
Nonini’s apology comes as the Kenya Kwanza government commemorates its first year in power. The government has faced harsh criticism from Kenyans, with a recent survey showing that 53% of Kenyans believe the country is moving in the wrong direction.
The high cost of living and unemployment are the main reasons cited by Kenyans for believing that the country is headed in the wrong direction. These were also the main reasons cited by the opposition during their anti-government protests earlier this year.
In the survey, 89% of respondents said that the high cost of living is the reason why they believe Kenya is moving in the wrong direction. Unemployment was the second most common reason given.
Nonini’s apology is a reflection of the growing frustration among Kenyans with the Kenya Kwanza administration. The government has been unable to address the high cost of living and unemployment, which are two of the biggest challenges facing the country.
Nonini and his former record label, Calif Records have clashed over the money he won after he sued influencer Brian Mutinda and the company he was marketing for using his music and not asking for permission nor kicking back some royalties.
Nonini had gone to court over copyright infringement in a landmark case which he won thus setting precedent BUT now, Calif Records co-founder, Clemmo has come out to say he feels he is owed a share of that 1 million Kshs.
Nonini went on the warpath against him! You would think these former friends and business partners (producers and artists are business partners) would be able to hop on a call and settle their differences BUT NO!
And the rapper went for the jugular which betrayed the existence of bad blood. This is what he had to say:
Ignorance sometimes huwa Mbaya: ????????????
Ngojeni kwanza nimalizane na influencer and the company then nikuje ni deal na hii ufala yenyu.
You do know every citizen has the right to appeal any court decision as per our constitution. ???? ???? ( So reading about things on mtandao utakaa fala sana).
Also if you feel your Rights were infringed you are at all liberty to open a suit against the 2 (influencer and company) But court systems are about Facts not emotional outbursts on social media. You gotta prove your case.
I have invested my time and resources in the suit which you can do the same ( Hii mambo haitaki uzembe) are we clear?
Also I can be petty about so many things. If you want us to go down that road!
Shokde Lee tunakam kuchunguza…
NB: in the mean time Kuna mention about this case tomorrow let me FOCUS! #Mgenge2ru
The legal curfuffle was decided in favour of Nonini whose government names are Hubert Nakitare, with a judgment delivered on March 23, 2023, at the Milimani Commercial Magistrate Court.
Nonini’s had sued Brian Mutinda for featuring his hit song ‘We Kamu’ in a video advert that promoted the latest television sets of the brand Syinix without either the artiste’s consent or awareness.
The Genge artiste celebrated the ruling with a social media post following the judge’s ruling that awarded him 1 million Ksh in general damages for the copyright infringement.
I have several Copyright Infringement cases in court that have been running simultaneously some for several years! #PrecedentSet
Today March 23rd 2023 will go down in history (Year of the Jordan) & is a Win for the Kenyan Music Industry #Mgenge2ru Vs the people who used my song “WeKamu” to push a product. #CopyrightShallBeRespected
In the Wise words of @50cent I’m gonna need that by Monday ???? #ChequeMate ???? ????????????
Nonini is among the first people who managed to change the music industry. This is due to his hardcore vibe that left him looking like a bad boy back in the early 2000’s.
Back then music was all about entertainment – unlike now when most artist prefer promoting nudity and beef that only lasts on Instagram.
Anyway, just recently Nonini opened up about his music journey while on an interview with Cleaning The Airwaves (CTA) ; where he also happened to share a few words about the late Lady S.
For those who remember Lady S know that this particular lady might have changed the music industry in ways we cannot understand. She was not only gifted in terms of dropping lyrics; but her vibe kept those around her very happy and this is why Nonini still mourns till date.
Lady S came through from Dandora, Rest in peace. She died in a road accident.
According to Nonini, Lady S came with her own flavour; and unlike others who would force vocals’ all Lady S needed to do is talk while on the beat. And this is how she ended up making hit songs back in the day.
Nonini praises Lady S
Although Nonini feels that Lady S left quite soon, he continues to blame her death on the horrible Thika super highway road before it was fixed. According to Nonini, he still gets angry every time he uses that high as it robbed Kenya one of the most talented Femcees from back in the day.
Speaking while on the interview, Nonini said;
When i pass through the Thika superhighway, I really get angry because it took so long for that highway to be made. Because the road was bad. She came with her own flavor. We were singing the way you talk and that’s how we blew up!
It has since been 13 years since the death of lady S and the music industry continues to fee her absense! For those who don’t know what Genge sounds like from a female’s version; then you can check out one the projects done by Lady S below.
Kenyan artistes have time and again been cautioned about the kind of content they produce, which must meet the required ethical standards according to the boards that are in-charge of them.
However, many have turned a deaf year and surprisingly, it´s not even the older generation of music artistes that has been condemned for vulgar content, it is the young and upcoming generation.
One would say: this is their time and this is the trend, let them be, they will improve later. But what many have failed to understand is that ´old habits die hard.´
It´s not Kenyans or these boards in-charge of these artistes who will suffer. It is these very same artistes whose future or probably tomorrow will have to bear the consequences.
Kenyan hip hop recording artist, Hubert Mbuku Nakitare popularly known as Nonini, gave an example of his journey in music, that not only proved tough but a lesson he will live to remember.
Up and close on Clearing the Airwaves, the Genge music artist recalled how he would release hit after another, gaining popularity both locally and globally, but not even one corporate approached him for an endorsement deal.
We all know the ´bigger´ an artist is, the better the offer on the table. Let´s even forget about the size of offer made, Nonini got nothing! Zero!
Why? Because the kind of content he had in his popular hits, had something vulgar and no one wanted to associate their product with such kind of ´immoral´ standards.
Kina Nameless walikuwa wanapata ma-endorsements, kina Redsan, kina Ogopa, guys were doing shows for Redbull, Trust condom, watu wanawekwa kwa ma billboards. Although I had hits, biggest hits in this country, I never got any endorsement, nothing. Because the people who were seating in the board rooms back then walikuwa wanasema zii, huyu jamaa ni controversial hatuwezi muweka kwa any of our brands.
Only for him to realize way later, like so many years later, what caused him the loss of such major opportunities.
Yes, he was recognized in International spaces but why weren´t any corporate brands interested in his kind of popularity? Ethical standards.
I came to realize that baadaye. Kwa hii time yote tuko na kina Clemo so we are realising mbona hatupati maendorsement? Mashow napiga, ground iko sawa, tour ndo hizo ziko scheduled kupiga USA, Australia wapi wapi lakini endorsement, zii. Tukiangalia endorsements ni ma artistes wengine wanapiga.
The founder of Genge eventually got his endorsement, but it was just one and that was just 2 years ago – 2018. Having lost so much time but I guess that´s how we learn.
The first corporate money I ever got big-time was from Safaricom just the other day when I became their Brand Ambassador last year but one (2018). That´s the first corporate endorsement Nonini has ever gotten so unaweza imagine what I have gone through in my career.
A story he gave, not because he is any proud of it. But just to spare youngins in this lucrative and easily gullible industry, that using vulgar content to sell themselves while disregarding what the boards are telling them, will eventually cost them. BIG!
And that is just what he doesn´t want the likes of Gengetone artists of today to go through, because they can learn now and not tomorrow.
Nonini is known for viral hits the likes of Manzi wa Nairobi,Keroro and We Kamu among others.
Nonini never made any corporate monies until that Safcom ad he did in 2018.This is exactly what is happening to most Gengetone artists right now. pic.twitter.com/Kk5brB6Gh4
In the early to mid 2000s when Calif Records and Ogopa Deejays were beefing, the award-winning producer, who is now 38, was working at Homeboyz Entertianment.
While at the stable which is owned by the Rabar family, Musyoka produced songs for the musicians like; Prezzo, TID, Mr Lenny, Nameless, AY, Wyre, Peter Miles, Nikki, Nonini, just to name a few.
He then took a break and went for further studies at the SAE Institute in the US in 2006. Upon his return, he formed Decimal Records and signed P-Unit.
If you ask me, I will tell you that the group that was made up Frasha, Bon Eye and Gabu is one of Musyoka’s greatest achievements to this day. He literally propelled them to greater heights.
What most people do not know is that the three started off as Nonini’s dancers and back-up singers and by 2010 they had won several awards including a MTV Africa Music Award (MAMA). Take a moment and let that sink in.
At Decimal, Musyoka has also worked with Just A Band, Juliani, Daddy Owen, Sauti Sol, Elani, Octopizzo and many more. Put simply, there is a high chance that he has produced a jam for your favourite Kenyan artist.
When all is said and done, he will be remembered for nurturing talents and taking Kenyan music to the continental stage because he started producing music at a time when most artists were just focusing on their local audiences.
Musyoka is one of the producers who changed the game by ensuring our music could transcend our borders and this led to artists getting so many shows outside the country.
He’s a legend in his own right and it saddens me that most people will realize this after he hangs up his boots because as they say, you never miss something until it’s gone.
Watch one of his most popular jams dubbed Furahi Day by Nonini and Nameless below.
Kenyan dancehall artist Kevin Waire, alias Wyre, is still a big deal in the country today, more than two decades after he wrote and recorded his first song but have you ever wondered how he has managed to stay relevant up to this very day?
Well, it’s pretty simple. First, he has always stayed true to himself. He has never bowed to pressure to venture into a genre that he’s not really feeling just to stay afloat. He has been churning out dancehall jams from the first day and that won’t change anytime soon.
He also doesn’t hurry to release new songs so as to remain relevant. The Nakupenda Pia hitmaker has a very long catalogue of hits that have kept him on people’s lips. Therefore, he takes all the time he needs with his projects on while performing his old jams.
Secondly, Wyre has been consistent since he made his debut in the music industry in the late 90s. In as much as he does not release a new song after a month or two – like most local artists – he also does not go for so long without releasing new music.
He has also constantly expanded his fanbase by working with a number of local and international acts. Some of them are; Nazizi, Kidis, Prezzo, Khaligraph, JB Maina, Benjamin Kabaseke, Nonini, Vigeti, Alaine, Cecile and Morgan Heritage.
Lastly, Wyre has always been disciplined. To date, we’ve never heard a scandal about him neither does he engage in cheap publicity stunts, as is the case with most local artists, to market his music. He relies on the chema chajiuza philosophy and it always works for him.
Kenyan artists should learn a thing or two from him if they want to have careers spanning many years.
Watch his latest collabo with Young Courageous and Janvier dubbed Ruka below.
The song dubbed Pose Za Kunguru, which means a reven’s pose, has been ruling the airwaves since it came out a few days ago and to be honest we also love it or we would not be reviewing it, would we?
Listening to this track made me appreciate the creativity of these youngsters as well as the evolution of Genge music because it takes you back to the early 2000s when the likes of Jua Cali and Nonini were a big deal.
I had a difficult time determining who is who on this jam since they kind of sound the same. Anyway, I must say that the guys first verse verse as well as the last did a good job.
I strongly believe that the two are Joefes and Maddox. Well, I could also be wrong but the truth is that I totally loved how they were playing around with words and making effortless rhymes.
The hook on this track is also very catchy and you are likely to master it after listening to it once. The beat is so dope so much so that you will retain this jam on your playlist for a very long time.
Listen to Pose Za Kunguru below and tell us what you think.
To be honest, I’ve never seen our local acts getting as much support compared to this year and that’s definitely one of the reasons why many people will live to remember this year.
A lot has been said about the genre of music that is popular in Kenya at the moment i.e. Gengetone. However, one of the things that you can’t deny was how popular it is/has become. It’s really infectious.
This year reminded me of the early 2000s when the likes of Flexx, Nonini, Jua Cali, Pilipili, Jimwat, Nameless, Lady S, Deux Vultures, Pilipili literally ruled the airwaves. Their music was like a drug of sorts.
If you had already been born during that time then I am sure you know what I’m talking about. Kenyan music was so big and most of us, including yours truly, had books where we had written down lyrics just to memorize the songs.
The best part was that most artists sang in a language that we could all understand with the addition of a little bit of Sheng which is unlike Gengetone but that’s a story for another day.
In as much as Kenyan music was really big this year and got us back to appreciating and supporting our local artists, I fear that the phase that we are in won’t last for long.
It’s pretty obvious that the new wave of Kenyan artists need to look for ways of sustaining the sound because whether you like or not, people will soon get tired of it.
They say that to much of something is bad and after listening to songs about sex, weed, bedroom affairs all year long, I must say that I have kind of had enough.
Don’t call me a hater but I’m not sure if songs by the likes of Ethic, Gwaash, Ochunglo Family, Boondocks Gang, Rico Gang, 34 GVNG will still slap as hard next year and that is why 2019 is more than exceptional. Enough said.
If you are in your 20s or older then I’m sure you have nostalgia when you remember the kind of songs that rules the airwaves in the early 2000s.
Genge music had just emerged and almost every artist was releasing a song that was inclined towards the genre.
However, others decided to steer their own paths and their songs were received well by fans nevertheless.
Put simply, it was a beautiful time for Kenyan music. It’s almost similar to the music revolution that is being witnessed in the country at the moment.
Among the male artists that were such a big deal at the time were; Pilipili, Flexx, E-Sir, Jimwat, Nonini, Klepto, Czars, Longombas, Redsan, Deux Vultures, Historians, Prezzo, Wyre, Mr. Lenny, Jua Cali and Nameless.
Today, we will focus on the last two names i.e Nameless and Jua Cali simply because they are big deal up to this very day, aren’t they though?
We want to find out who between the two made your childhood memorable and the song that brings back the good old memories.
Admittedly, both artists are talented. They’ve both played a crucial role in shaping the Kenyan sound.
However, if you had to choose one of them, who would you settle on and why? Tell us below.
The emergence of the new crop of Kenyan musicians has resulted into people comparing them with their older peers i.e. those who have been in the game for longer, say a decade or so.
While the new-age artists are spontaneous, the older folk are more ‘calculative’ which means that they think every move through carefully and perhaps this works to their detriment.
There is also the obvious fact that the younger folk are very ratchet going by the words that they use in their songs and their videos. On the other hand, old school artists are kind of reserved.
Most of the older folk are still using the Tanzanian approach of singing about dirty things i.e stuff is hidden and coming at a time when almost everyone is being raunchy, this doesn’t serve in their best interest or does it?
If you are keen, then I’m sure that you’ve noticed that the likes of Jua Cali, Redsan, Nameless, Wyre and Nonini don’t get much as they used to back it they day.
We have reached a point where they are almost unheard of and the truth is that this has a lot to do with the new crop of Kenyan artists because they are literally hogging the spotlight.
Unlike their older peers, they don’t wait for a song to ‘marinate’ before they drop another one, they are always on toes. This way, they are always on people’s lips.
At the end of the day, when all is said and done, if you are a big fan of Kenyan music like yours truly then you have to decide where your loyalty really lies.
Are you sticking with the old school music that is more reserved but enjoyable and you wouldn’t be shy to listen to in front of your parents.
Or are you an ardent fan of new-school music with all it raunchiness and you can live with the fact that you have to cover your face in shame when it comes on and an elder person is around.
Kenyan musicians who were household names 10 years (or so) ago have been struggling to make a comeback in the last few years. However, their efforts are neither here nor there. It’s almost as if they are wasting their time.
Truth is, time flies. Maybe you treated Kenyans to a big hit in your heydays. For one reason or the other, you decided to slow down or take a break as you bask in your success. Maybe you just got lazy, who knows?
Somewhere along the way, perhaps after 5 (or so) years, the musician decides to go back to studio to record songs. More often than not, what motivates them is the fact that their bank account are not as fat as they used to be.
They hurry to release the songs. However, the songs don’t do well. They can’t even get 10,000 views on YouTube. This comes as a shock to many artists who were big back in the day. They find it hard to believe that their fans have moved on.
You see, 5 years is such a long time. Hundreds, maybe thousands of new musicians have cropped up since the old guns took a break. Naturally, some of them won the hearts of music fans.
As such, when the old guns make a comeback after so many years, they find it hard to penetrate the industry. Perhaps they sound the same way and this makes it even harder.
Instead of releasing many songs that no one bothers to listen to, these old guns should come face-to-face with the fact that they are no longer the household acts that they were a decade ago.
In so doing, they will come to the realization that they need to work with new-age musicians to regain relevance and break through in the local industry.
Accepting that you are no longer at the top takes a lot of humility. Actually, it’s a laudable act. The sooner most old guns realize this the better.
Some of the old guns who have been trying to make a comeback include; Mr. Lenny, Kenzo, DNA, Nonini, Kendi, Kenrazy, Big Pin, Julani, just to name a few. I hope one day they will get an eye-opener.
Nonini and several other musicians are now up in arms against Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO) which provide license to all these other bodies – MPAKE/KAMP/PRISK/MCSK.
Nonini says KECOBO has provided license to Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK) even after court found them guilty of embezzling funds. The music body has failed to pay musicians since 2017.
“MCSK was deregistered in 2017 because they collected money and did not pay artists. In 2017 and 2018 they continued to collect illegally and not paying artists, further the court found them guilty and ordered kecobo to take action. Instead of kecobo taking action, they have gone ahead to license the same organisation which has not paid any artist from 2017,” said Nonini in part.
Veteran rapper Nonini has blasted Kenyan musicians who have opted to stay silent in the ongoing “Play Kenyan Music debate” because they are afraid of their friends who work in the media.
Kenyans entertainers have been arguing about the state of the industry and how presenters are not helping local artists. The heated debated has lasted a week now as artists and presenters look for a lasting solution.
We are taking note
Nonini believes that while some artists are busy debating, others are just silent because they are friends with presenters and they don’t want to cross them.
“And then we have Kenyan musicians who like sitting on the fence whenever any meaningful industry discusions are taking place ndio wasikosee mabeste zao. Bunch of sell outs tunawacheki #ZeroRespect You might be comfortable with status Quo but think about it for a minute its not about you. Maybe your Son or Daughter might one day decide to be musicians what kinda environment will they find #PlayKenyanMusic#2019#TWT#TeamWagengeTrue,” he said on social media.
The heated argument has sure helped artists increase airplay in radio station as more and more media houses have promised to play local music.
Nonini has decided to unveil his baby mama after years of hiding her identity. The Genge rapper has only been posting photos of their son Jaden Githara Nakitare giving the public the impression that he is raising the kid as a single parent.
On Saturday November 24th, Nonini announced that he would officially unveil his baby mama, he teased his fans by only posting a photo of her leg.
Nonini eventually posted photos of his baby mama Wamaitha Mwangi as he officially introduced her to his fans on social media. The rapper revealed that Wamaitha is a philanthropist who cares for some 44 children at Angel Centre for Abandoned Children.
“Meet my baby mama, Wamaitha Mwangi. Founder at @angelcentrekenya. Yes I’m a #BabyDaddy to 44 of her kids. I mentor two boys at the centre under a new programme they are launching to help us reach out to the boy children at the centre. Angel centre is looking for men to come volunteer their time to the boy child. They have unfortunately been neglected. This is a call to all my brothers out there, come join me Sunday 9th December and let’s make a difference in these boys lives! Details to be communicated,” Nonini announced.
Nonini has landed a new lucrative job just a month after he was forced to resign from PRISK. The Genge rapper is the new brand ambassador for telecommunications giant Safaricom.
“At 12:50p.m today, my team started a new chapter. @Noninimgengetrue partnered with Safaricom as The *Safaricom Brand Ambassador*. This endorsement cuts across all Safaricom products. Brand Nonini joins @safaricomplc_ as a creative brand ambassador. @dambala.sabaquo #LookTop,” Nonini announced.
Former singer turned CEO Angela Ndambuki has landed yet another job months after she was fired at Kenya Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) after only eight months at the job.
Ndambuki is now the Vice Chairperson to the company’s Board of Directors, a position that she will hold for a period of 3 years. She promised to fight for the good of Kenyan artistes who are members of Kamp.
“I am honoured to be appointed as vice-chairperson of KAMP. It gives me the opportunity to share my experiences and help grow the organization. I believe there are huge opportunities for the organization and I look forward to working with the Board and management team to strengthen our position in the copyright industry for the benefit of all our members,” Angela said after landing the job.
The former singer holds a Master of Law in Intellectual property Law from University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom and a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Nairobi.
She has won numerous awards including the prestigious CEO Global Awards, 2015 Africa’s Most Influential Women in Business and Government in the Category of Welfare and Civil Society Organizations, Top 40 under 40 Women 2017 and listed as 100 most Reputable Africans by Reputation Poll. She also sits as a board member of the Machakos County Entertainment Centre for Film, Media, Music and the Arts
Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO) stipulates that PRISK should jointly collect royalties together with Kenya Association of Music Producers (KAMP) and Music Publishers Association of Kenya (MPAKE).
But PRISK and KAMP have excluded MPAKE in the the collection of royalties, Nonini decided to resign after he failed to compel PRISK and KAMP to follow the law and include MPAKE in collection of royalties.
4 board members against Nonini
Apparently, four out of six directors at PRISK’s board of directors voted to continue with KAMP-PRISK collections excluding MPAKE.
The four who voted to continue with the illegal collection of royalties include Daddy Owen, Ian Mbugua, Irene Kariuki and Beatrice Achieng.
Nameless abstained from the vote to continue with the while illegal collection of royalties while Samuel Kuria (SK Blue) was absent during the vote.
Nonini served as the board chairman of Performers Rights Society of Kenya (PRISK) until August 8th when he resigned following internal wrangles.
PRISK is licensed by the Kenya Copyright Board to represent performers in musical and dramatic works. Its mandate include collection and distribution of royalties.
Nonini however claims internal politics has crippled PRISK, he says the organization no longer serves the best interest of Kenyan musicians.
“This letter serves as my official resignation as chairman of PRISK effective 8th August 2018. It is my opinion that the PRISK board and by extension KAMP board no longer serve the best interests of Kenyan music artists and i cannot continue serving the PRISK board as Chairman, on a boad where politics of not collecting royalty in line with KECOBO directives is more important than the future of the Kenyan music industry collecting royalty jointly,” Nonini wrote in part in his resignation letter.
Nonini explains that he decided to quit from his position as the board chairman after his efforts to compel PRISK to follow the law hit a snag.
The Genge rapper says PRISK has been excluding other mandated bodies in collecting royalties jointly as stipulated in the law. He says he can’t be part of a mafia system.
“I reported to the board of directors that over this past weekend the KAMP/PRISK licensing team had invoinced a client’s event manually and against the policy that is in place to joint collection. What was disturbing is that the invoince was not a joint MPAKE/KAMP/PRISK invoice but a KAMP/PRISK invoice only. This is illegal trend of KAMP/PRISK collections excluding MPAKE has been going on for some time despite objections I have raised,” wrote Nonini.
It has been a while since we heard from Nonini aka Mgenge true but this does not mean that he is sitting idle at home. Judging from his social media pages, it is easy to tell that he has been busy with a few of his projects – taking a break from making music!
Anyway, I recently bumped into a few photos of his son who has really grown into a fine young man. From the new pictures, one can say that the two will end up looking alike when the young man gets to his father’s age in a few years to come.
He is not just adorable but very stylish… from his clothes to his hair cuts that are often done at popular barber shops JayJay is undeniably living the good life. Below are the few photos shared by his dad.
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