image courtesy of www.stellamwangi.com – STL Myspace
So here is a classic example of a Kenyan artist that I cant figure out how to classify her or her music into any African Genre. On a previous post I made a comment about how Kenyan music will need to radically change if a defined sound can’t be attributed to its core. For instance, we know Kwaito music immediately we hear it, regardless of the artist, we know HipHop (which is what this song is). we know what Zouk, Benga, Soukous, Lingala, Coupe De Cale is… the list is endless. Genres will always keep coming up over time but I feel as though in Kenya and Tanzania we haven’t really figured out what can clearly distinctly define what Genge is or what Kapuka is. Everyone has their own rationale of what Genge is, and everyone has their one definition of Kapuka. To me it seems we just label tracks based on the dialect being used – if the guy raps in Naija we call it Naija music, if the guy raps in Sheng we call it Genge… Kapuka beat is something that can be argued out, but possibly that could be the Kenyan sound – I dont know am unsure. I know the bounce beat Ambrose cropped up was unique.. again I dont know maybe we can talk about this on the corporate blog
I love STL for two main reasons, she has never tried to do the whole Genge, Kapuka thing – it wasn’t her thing so she didnt even try to get into it. Secondly, she recognizes her talent and takes up the challenge to compete in the western market seriously. Some artists like Bamboo, Kantai, Doobiez have similar talent capabilities (ability to rap in both swahili and english) but I think they get caught up in trying to serve two different markets. These types of artists are very unique and take a longer time to break the market – a fine example is K’Naan, who has been doing the Somali thing for a while. (thanks to the pirates publicity – now K’Naan will be a superstar coz everyone wants to know his opinion) But the fact is K’Naan has been doing this for a while plus the fact that he is based in Canada also just meant he had access to different audience all the time.
I still however think STL will be a big star one day – she seems to be able to handle herself well, however looking at the current Female MC’s in the market place I am a little concerned with how far she will go. Either way – She Got it is a good Dirty South Track, I added the remix as a bonus cake. She will be on tour doing shows in Dallas around May, I am not sure how regular Kenyans will react to her considering people booed Bamboo 3 years ago on stage for rapping in English, I would definately want to see how Dallas folks will react to Stella Mwangi.
Either way Enjoy the track
listen to She Got it here:[audio:http://getmziki.s3.amazonaws.com/STL-She_Got_It.mp3]
download the album version here:
download the remix version here: