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Country Pan Africa Genres fusion pop Festival Sauti za Busara 2009
WaPi (Words and Pictures) is a monthly arts festival organised by the British Council in Tanzania to develop relationships with young audiences, performers and artists. WaPi events provide a platform for new, raw creative talent from all art forms to perform and present to large audiences of young people.
WaPi has a regular following in Tanzania, Kenya, Ghana, Uganda and Nigeria and is now spreading to other African countries including Senegal, Ethiopia and Cameroon. As part of WaPi, British Council has recently launched a business skills training programme for creative people giving them the opportunity to develop creative businesses.
For WaPi in pictures see http://www.flickr.com/photos/27165514@N07/tags/2008
At Sauti za Busara 2009, we proudly showcase "The Best of WaPi – Africa", featuring:
Jonny Ragga (Ethiopia) From Addis Ababa, Jonny Ragga's musical passion is reggae. With his Medina Band he has performed around North America, Europe, Middle East and Africa. Jonny is involved in every aspect of his music, from writing the lyrics and melodies to production arrangements. He is currently working on his own record label JR Productions for young and up coming artists. His first solo album "Give Me The Key" was released in 2005. He has won many awards including Best Music Video (Ethiopian music awards, 2005); Best East African Musician (Channel O Music Awards, 2006) and first place at the Fest Horn festival (Djibouti, 2006).
Jesse Jagz (Nigeria) Jesse Abaga, aka Jesse Jagz was born in Jos, Nigeria. Both his parents are pastors with a musical inclination so he was inspired by the church choir from an early age. He started playing drums aged seven. He was soon performing and rapping at secondary school, where he also started a dance group. His group "Eleven Thirty" quickly became a huge success in Jos. In 2005 and 2006 Jesse Jagz had five songs simultaneously dominating the top ten charts on Nigerian radio stations. His debut album "This Jagged Life" is due for release in 2009.
Jojo Body Beat (Nigeria) Joseph Ololade Omotoye aka Jojo Body Beat plays afro beats using his body parts. A diploma holder in Theatre Arts from Lagos State University, Jojo has the unique ability of producing musical and well orchestrated sound through the beating of unexpected parts of his body. He is an MC, musical comedian, drummer, dancer and performer who can perform on any platform and fuse with any kind of music or musician. He has shared the stage with King Sunny Ade, Lagbaja, Femi Kuti and been the subject of a BBC World television documentary.
Ozzeey (Tanzania) Ozzeey began his musical journey in Moshi, Kilimanjaro before moving to Zambia, where he learnt to play guitar and keyboards. He has performed in Swaziland and South Africa where he also studied computer science. Having spent a few years playing live music and producing in Cape Town, he returned to Tanzania in 2005. Ozzeey is a founding member of the Conscious Music Network and a key player in the compilation album "Haki Sawa".More info: WWW.MYSPACE.COM/OZEDZEEWHY
Zero Kasorobo (Zanzibar) Kassim Yusuf Mohamed, aka Zero Kasorobo was born in 1972 in Pemba. He has a terrific abundance of talents; he is a poet, a singer, a qualified martial artist, comedian and talented rapper. His unique poetry is delivered in a contemporary Swahili style. At WaPi events he asks the audience to fire any question which he'll always answer in a poetic but hilarious style leaving audiences laughing their hearts out.
Wenyeji (Kenya) Zakah and Swalleh, a rap duo are members of the infamous Dandora slum based rap unit Ukoo Flani Mau Mau. They form an enviable team of lyrical partners who rhyme about the streets of Dandora, life in the ghetto and youth frustrations. www.myspace.com/wenyeji
GNL Zamba (Uganda) Ernest Nsimbi, aka GNL, is a multi faceted Ugandan hiphop artist who uses Luganda and English to express himself. He is also a songwriter, poet and music video scriptwriter. His love for philosophy inspired him to use the initials GNL; originating from the Aztec civilization saying; "At the Highest Degree of Self Expression, you achieve Greatness of No Limits". GNL expresses African pride and a love for African culture in his careful weaving of stories. He is currently working on an album "Koyi Koyi: Riddles of Life". In it, he expresses the dreams and aspirations of Africa's youth and the difficulties they and the rest of the continent are going through to achieve them.