Aipate‘s 2018 ultimate Kenyan hip hop list is finally out as we continue our culture of keeping an annual (each September) list of the top hip hop musicians in the country. From 2015, 2016, 2017 and now 2018, we have been providing our readers with an insight into the hip hop landscape. To head into it right away, these are the factors we consider while compiling our list:
- Does one have a more-than-decent lyrical skill-set, sheer determination and strong work ethics?
- Has one released a properly distributed project, be it an album, EP or mixtape?
- Does one create compelling content which many can relate to?
- Does one command good ‘Street Cred’?
- Is one’s brand strong enough to improve music consumption/sales?
And then… the list.
Wangechi makes a return to the list after a brief hiatus. Her song “Comeback” literally expresses this and re-engages her loyal following.
9. Kayvo Kforce
Kayvo Kforce‘s longevity in the hip hop game is something to write home about. Impressive still, is his ability to remain relevant throughout the years. He has been releasing new content that relates to his new and old fans alike.
The duo represents that new wave of hip hop acts who have put in much work and are now reaping from their effort as they’ve got the streets talking. Lyrics, flow or hooks, they have that exciting edge.
7. Barak Jacuzzi
A new entrant to the list, the artist has found a way of bridging the buzzing Nairobi underground scene with the mainstream stage. His feature on Octopizzo’s “Tergat Gang” probably did a lot to thrust him to the limelight but it found him already with great records and he still manages to attract more fans with that new sound.
6. Muthoni Drummer Queen
She released her SHE album earlier this year. It is a creatively solid body of work. Her influence both mainstream and in the underground scene positions her as one of the top acts of the year.
5. King Kaka
Though his success on the business front is the most exciting thing to talk about these days, his music still rules 2018.
She is currently signed to her own label Badili Akili and this puts her in a better position of expediting her releases. 2018 saw her continue her string of quality releases.
Well, even though he is currently more inclined towards Afropop, Nyashinski remains still delivers tight lyricism as “KEBS” will exemplify.
A new album, fresh hits and more buzz; that’s how Octopizzo remains part of the conversation and a top contender for the crown.
Finally, his debut album, Testimony 1990 came through. This release surely reinforced his number one spot, although I feel he’d still have retained it considering the growing demand for everything Khaligraph.
There you have it, Aipate‘s Ultimate Top 10 Kenyan Hip Hop Musicians of 2018. We are excited to inform you that this list was featured on the 11th episode of the second season of Ado Veli podcast. You can stream it below.
Any view about this list can be expressed in the below comments’ section.
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