Kenyan Songs That Shaped 2018 Bien Aime, Otile Brown, Willy Paul Msafi and Nyashinski
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Culture - Entertainment - Magazine - December 25, 2018

Kenyan Songs That Shaped 2018

Some critics say 2018 is the year the quality of music came to die but the numbers speak a different story.

NAIROBI (Blacquire) – The rise of Kenya’s version of mumble rap took shape as two poorly shot songs became the most memorable songs of 2018. Ethic’s Lamba Lolo and Position garnered millions of views on YouTube and received massive airplay on radio. We list ten Kenyan songs that shaped 2018.

It is also the same year that Kenya’s most respected band Sauti Sol collaborated with the king of comeback artist in the country Nyashinksi to deliver two songs that were on repeat mode all year.

Bitter Sweet Love Stories

Otile Brown and socialite Vera Sidika had a relationship whose good and bad times played out in the open and from that came massive hits. The two duped the whole country that they had broken up only for Otile Brown to release a song that took YouTube by storm. Baby Love has garnered over six million views at the time of this publication.

When they broke up the second time Otile Brown released yet another song explaining why he had dumped Vera Sidika. The song Niacheni directly addresses the fans of Vera Sidika who constantly attacked him for cheating on their queen. He claims Vera Sidika aborted his baby.

Vera Sidika’s Debut In Music

Vera Sidika later released his own version of events in the form of a song that has also garnered massive airplay. The success of the song can be attributed to the fact that Vera aired some really dirty linen in public about Otile Brown. Her claims that Otile Brown is not endowed in some quarters pushed eyeballs to the song.

Controversies and Click Baits

Many musicians in the country were appalled by the massive success Otile Brown and Vera Sidika got by using controversies to push their craft. The artists took notes. King Kaka had the nerve to lie to the entire country that his song was banned by the Kenya Film Classification Board and hence removed from YouTube. All this time he had made the video private to make it look like it had been deleted. This created a lot of buzz and when the song came back online it easily hit the one million mark.

Lost Sheep

Willy Paul’s alienation from the gospel industry continues to be apparent as he focuses his energy on releasing romantic songs. His song with a Tanzanian singer was one of the most played.

Here is a list of the most viewed songs on YouTube 2018.

1. Short N Sweet

A song by boy band Sauti Sol featuring Nyashinski was the most viewed song of 2018 and one of the most viewed of all time. At the time of this publication, the song had 11 million views. The dance trended all over the world and made Aggie, one of the dancers, the most sought after dancer in the country.

2. Chaguo La Moyo

Otile Brown collaborated with veteran musician Sanaipei Tande and the results did not disappoint. With 10 million views and still counting, most Kenyans know the lyrics from start to end. The song proved that Kenyan artists can produce Swahili songs that are at par with those released by Tanzanians.

3. Njiwa

This is one of the most viewed songs ever released by Willy Paul. The love song is open to interpretation on who it was addressed to. It features Tanzanian singer Nandy and has more than 7 million views. Say what you may about him but Willy Paul’s catalogue cannot be ignored.

4. Baby Love

Otile Brown’s love song dedicated to Vera Sidika. The video vixen is Vera herself. The video was released at a time when everybody thought that the two had broken up. In the song, Otile promises to never leave Vera Sidika. The promise did not age well. The song has more than 6 million views.

5. Bebi Bebi

From the look of things, everything Nyashinski touches turns into gold. In this solo project, Sauti Sol addresses a number of things including the sponsor menace and being broke. The song has close to 4 million views.

6. Lamba Lolo

Lamba Lolo by Ethic is by far the most popular song of 2018. Even though it is number six in the most viewed, the fact that it was purely amateur and did not have the industry’s backing in its production gives it the credibility. It is in this song that we are introduced to Swat mtoto wa Eunice and the hard hitting Rekles. People like DJ Pinye can rubbish the song but they can’t take away the almost 3 million views it has.

7. Position

Another club banger by Ethic. This time they had The Kansoul in their project. Even though many criticized Mejja for his lyrics that didn’t exactly make sense in the conventional way, the song has more than 2.4 million views.

8. Tujiangalie

Another collaboration of Sauti Sol and Nyashinski. A social song that seeks to ask the voters to be careful in choosing their leaders. Sauti Sol are known for their political incorrectness. At one time they accused the government of stealing their idea. Tujiangalie has more than 2.2 million views.

9. 2 in 1

Naiboi has successfully managed to bury his past. Ever since he changed his name from Rapdamu, he has been releasing quality songs that receive airplay. In this song that happens to have 2.1 million views, he is the first Kenyan artist to bring together almost all Kenyan celebrities to appear in one video.

10. Vimbada

Jabidii proves without any reasonable doubt that he is not a one hit wonder with this song. After the success of Odi Dance, he teams up with Moji Short Baba to release this gospel hit that has more than 1.9 million views.

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