The recent past has seen Nairobi host an unusual number of international stars. Already, two confirmed artistes are set to perform in Nairobi in a month’s time. Busy Signal is coming to perform while Swala hitmaker Jason Derulo will be the guest artiste of this year’s Coke Studio Africa’s global fusion edition. Isn’t it quite something that now Nairobi is hosting big shots of the world’s music industry? Nairobi used to be the heart of East Africa’s showbiz and if an artiste came to East Africa without performing in Nairobi then he’d not performed yet.
Currently Tarrus Riley is in Kenya. A few days ago, Nairobi hosted RnB singer Omarion. Before him, reggae lovers had Bob Marley’s son “Junior Gong” Damian Nesta Marley. Nigerian big names like Iyanya and Jidenna (who is Nigerian-American) and Don Carlos are coming too. Is Nairobi finally regaining it’s grip as the region’s hotspot for star performances? A friend pointed out that local artistes are appreciating Nairobi and as a result, the world is appreciating Nairobi too. So I asked how and he gave me an example of days when artistes churned songs like “Huku Nairobi”, “Twende Tukawake South C”, “Manzi wa Nairobi”, “Githurai” and the likes, there was an inflow of big names performing in Nairobi. Then nobody sang about it for ages, till recently when Mayonde did a song titled “Nairobi” featuring Stone Jiwe. And yes, Gilad too has a song called “Nairobi Yangu”!
Well, it’s a coincidence. But the vigor with which Nairobi is winking at international artistes is something we should all laud.