The legendary Kenyan dancehall musician, Wyre has for the first time retraced his roots to his musical beginnings at Dagoretti High School, popularly known as Ditchez in an exclusive interview organized by Chaguo Awards Africa 2020. Wyre delved into his musical beginnings, exploring some of the greatest musical influences in his career not forgetting his dancehall sound. He clearly narrates the impact that Dagoretti High School had on him and how the school which was well known for excelling in arts at that particular time, molded him into the superstar that he is today.
Growing up, Wyre was a loyal music enthusiast with a very diverse playlist consisting of some of the biggest music icons of that time including Michael Jackson, Don Carlos and Yellowman just to mention a few. “There was a time my mum came back from the UK with a video tape of Motown 25 celebrations and that was the first time I watched Michael Jackson performing on his own. He did a set with his brothers as the Jackson five and then after that he performed on his own; it was the first time he ever performed Billie Jean and I was like, you know what, I think this is what I want to do. I want to be on that stage!” Wyre passionately narrates his inspiration to get into music. He also mentions Don Carlos as an inspiration to get into reggae. However, he ended up getting more and more into the dancehall sound thanks to Snow, Yellowman and Shaboranks who were the biggest dancehall stars at that time.
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Wyre traces his musical beginnings to Dagoretti High School where he first started his music career in an acapella group called Soul Park. “I got a lot of my experience of performing on stage while I was part of Soul Park in high school. I also started practicing signing autograph’s haha…” He narrates as he talks about his various performances in other schools as part of Soul Park.
“Ditchez was well known for excelling in the arts, we really did well when it came to drama and music,” states Wyre as he reflects on the impact that Ditchez had on his career path in arts. “My passion was really in music and so when I got an opportunity I got into the school choir. We had a really harsh music director called Mr. Nyang’wera who really whipped us into shape when it came to learning to sing in a unit.”
“Dago taught us a lot of survival skills and churned out a lot of artistes and politicians.” Notably, the school has molded some of the greatest creatives in the industry including Roba of Kalamashaka, MP John Kiarie who was a comedian before getting into politics and Alvin the gospel musician. “I remember we used to come to music fest and have this session with the school band and we would set up in the middle of the field and play some of the biggest hit songs at that time. Soon enough every school would gather around to watch like a mini concert,” explains the She Say Dat hit maker on how he learnt his stage performance discipline at such an early age.
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“DITCHEZ FOR LIFE MAN!” Concludes Wyre as he teases that we might even see a Soul Park re-union someday.
WATCH THE INTERVIEW BELOW FOR THE FULL STORY