They have it all; Talent, looks and charm. Meet the illest rappers right now. They have released hits like ‘Mara io’ and ‘Downlow’. They can really only go up from here. We met with them to find out more about them and what drives them;
Kindly introduce yourselves;
Govt Name: Dennis Lucas Githiora
Stage Name: WanTwo (MojaMbili)
Govt Name: Allan Ochoro better known as Ruch Senior…co-founder and Rapper with AfrikaNation Mziki.
How many are you and what’s your group name?
Group Name: AFRIKANATION MZIKI
Denno: Current members: 4, Elijah Eljay – in charge of design and art Work (artiste), Don Moon – Strategist and CFO.
Denno: The other two are Ruch and WanTwo.
Denno: The 4 Members seat at the Committee/Management. We also have dancers, models, promoters etc who are part of the larger Afrikanation Mziki.
Allan: We are quite a number as my partner Wantwo has already explained. AfrikaNation Mziki started out in Campus when WanTwo and I decided to come together to do music.
How and why did you come up with that name?
Allan: we have since grown both in numbers and as a brand…we decided on the name Afrikanation Mziki since the name is revolutionary and it also depicts what we want to do through our music, that is join Africa together as one nation thus the name Afrikanation Mziki.
Denno: Our main aim of doing music was and still is to unite the African Nations into one and at the same time showcase the positive side of the African Youth and how best to do this is by using Music and Art in general.
So uniting the African Nations into one Nation with its base/capital in Kenya that’s how AFRIKANATION MZIKI (Afrikanation with a K for Kenya) came to be. With our logo being the African map with no borders and a Mic in the middle.
Where are you all from, where is your hood?
Allan: I come from U-Town of Umoja Estate, #BigUp Umo
Denno: Umoja, Kasarani and Gumba est (the 4 committee members) the rest from across the country.
How would you describe your music to the public audience?
Allan: Our style is Afrikanation Music, we do contemporary songs. We can’t really tie it down to one genre thus Afrikanation Music. Although we started out as strictly Hip-hop artist’s you’ll hear a bit of that aspect in our songs.
Denno: Our music talks about everyday life situations, be it love, hustle, party, ambitions, life teachings and personal experiences. We tell it like it is, originally started as a hip-hop group but with time we have developed our sound to a more diverse urban sound.
What made you first realize you wanted to do music and have you always wanted to do this?
Allan: I first realized I wanted to do music way back in Primary, back then we used to leave at South B and I’d see the great E-sir and Nameless hanging around the hood when Ogopa was still buzzing with artists. I was amazed that these guys actually live very humble lives and yet I hear them in radio every day. I wanted to be like them, so I started cramming their lyrics, and rapping them to my sisters & cousins. It grew into an interest in music and got a compilation of International stars such as Eminem and Dr Dre. Soon enough I started writing my own rhymes, I took this to high school (Upperhill) where I starred in an inter class concert and guys liked my stuff which made me want to write more. I formed a group SPJ, which later dissolved…cut the story short, I kept writing and started recording and today I’m here.
Denno: I have always loved music and everything about music. Since I can remember, I, primary, i would sing other peoples songs in my own words just for the fun of it and perform such songs to my friends. I continued in high school and Campus where I met Ruch. Then one day we were challenged to walk in a recording studio and really prove ourselves that was back in 2010/2011 and since i stepped into the booth that’s when i found my place on this Earth.
How long have you been in the music industry?
Allan: As a group we’ve been in the industry since around 2011, individually I think both of us started at different times; mine was 2008 when I recorded my first jam.
What has been the biggest challenge for your group, and if you had the opportunity to change something about the music industry what would it be?
Allan: Of course our biggest challenge has been finances and also when we started off we had no one to direct as like after recording a track, you should do this and that to promote it but we have grown and learnt a lot.
Denno: Our other major challenge is corruption of course…”Toa kakitu kwanza tuweke mziki yako on rotation/replay“. If I had an opportunity to change one thing about the music industry, that would be to ensure artists are not exploited by ensuring their royalties get to them and they get value for their talent.
How do you like to spend your free time away from the music?
Denno: Free time away from music. That’s when we are strategizing and putting together plans for our next musical project, I mean, it’s always music.
Allan: In my free time, I love watching soccer and series.
Describe each other.
Denno: Describing Ruch:
Talented, Patient, Hardworking and Very Understanding. Always chasing after the next coin.
We have been through a lot with my brother here, only he knows.
Allan: Dennis is a selfless person, very motivated ambitious and hardworking, and he has a funny side to him.
Who do you look up to in the local and international scene.
Allan : Local scene I look up to Nonini and Abbas. I respect Nonini’s hustle, plus ofcourse Abbas is a legend.
Internationally the Lord of rap Nas, that man has word like no other man does, currently Kendrick and Drake are doing a great job.
Denno: Locally I admire the discipline Wyre has, the consistency Kaka Sungura has, and of course anytime any day Kitu Sewer from MauMau. In Africa Sarkodie and A.K.A. Internationally it has to be Masta Ace, Nas, Eminem, Hov the businessman, Kendrick Lamar the lyricist, Yassin Bey/Mos Def the poet…..this list is endless really.
‘Down low’ is your latest release, any news on when will expect the video release?
Allan: Down Low is one of our biggest projects yet from our yet to be released still untitled album, we recorded it at Revive Media owned by Jesse Bukindu, and the video is done by the skilled Mushking. The video will be dropping first week of August, ya’ll better get ready!!!
‘Baby boo’ and ‘Mara io’ has been getting quite a bit of air play, how do you market yourselves?
Allan: Well, we own a distribution company, Afrikanation Mziki Promotion, in conjunction with Youri Promotions. We push our products online, on radio, with street DJ’s and also on our local TV stations. We are looking to expand our horizon to Africa and beyond, watch this space.
What’s the wildest story with your group?
Allan: I think when recording DownLow we found another group in session and had to wait, so we bought a mzinga and got a bit high. We had to re-record later on, that night though, we ended up in Westlands and Dennis can tell the rest of the story.
Denno: After what ruch has said above. I was mugged and seriously beaten but thanks to this God Given Strength I was able to fight the 5 guys off. I was left with a swelled up face, black eye , no wallet/fone/ID, some loose change and a bleeding swelled up nose. On the next Sunday at 1 am and the next weekend we were shooting the Baby Boo video.
Do you have any video links where people can see you?
Look us up on Youtube, Sound Cloud, Mdundo, and Facebook under Afrikanation Mziki, on twitter we are @ AfrikanationM, our individual accounts in IG are @Wantworeal and @Ruch_Senior.
What is a typical day /week for you?
Allan: Typical day/ week is hustle on our day jobs till 5, then embark on our musical journey till 11, although the weekends are always fully committed to music.
What is the potential income for this career?
Allan: We can earn any amount we dream about as long as we are willing to put in the work.
What do you like most /least about your music career What I like most about our music career is it has brought us closer as friends and we get to see and overcome challenges as they come, what I like least at the moment is can’t give it 100% of my time as I’d like to.
What personal advice would you give to someone waiting to pursue this career and what mistakes do young upcoming artistes make when trying to pursue this career?
Denno: Firstly, the equation of quantity over quality. Make sure you get a good producer who really gets you and know what you want. Build up a relationship with your producer and most importantly listen to advice given especially by people who have been in the game for way longer than you. Every day is another day to learn and better yourself. Secondly, patience, persistence, hard work and a strong will really does pay off.
Allan: Mistakes most or all artists do while coming up is lacking patience and thinking your first release will automatically make you the next Michael Jackson, relax be patient and take time to learn and sharpen your skills. It’s common to musician to be out of work for long periods of time.
How important is your image? And what is your personal style?
Allan: Image is everything don’t compromise, I personally love smart casual with accessories since it’s the first thing people see.
Denno: Smart casual for me as well
Where do you see yourselves in a couple of years?
Allan: In a couple of years I see us overtaking P square as the most successful music duo in Africa. I’d love to share a stage with Sanaipei Tande, Julian and Eko Dida. They’re crowd movers.
Last word for your fans
Allan: We love what we do and we do it to entertain. Support us by watching our videos on YouTube, requesting for our songs on radio, and we promise to keep you entertained for many years to come.
Denno : Expect more music more videos more gigs more merchandise and more Afrikanation Everything.
Thank you for your support and let’s keep on keeping on. Let’s take Afrikanation Mziki global.