The regular morning session kicked off with a passionate negotiation
and debate amongst the artistes before they all eventually agreed on
a running order for tomorrow’s show - it felt good to see everyone
involve themself in the decision making process.
There is no doubt that the Kano-Lagos Concert is a big deal for all
the artistes and one can feel the buzz in the air here.
Local producer, Lt. John and his team of studio engineers went to work
editing and mixing songs while the rest of the workshop participants
went on a much anticipated tour of the ancient city of Kano.
Jonah the Monach, one of Nigeria’s finest beatmakers who produced all
5 tracks for the first leg of the Hiphop workshop series in Lagos,
emailed some beats to us in Kano. The Participants chose their
favourites and went straight to work on 2 songs.
One of the tracks, “The Power Of The Word”,
deals with conflict (religious, human and political) that is caused
through the manipulation of words. The verses, which are directed at
the Hausa and English speaking communities, send out a clear message
against intolerance and violence.
Our Lagos & Kano MC’s represented on the second track, true Hiphop
fashion, with a rap hookline in Hausa “Hiphop Shine Rayuwa Ta Da Sako”
(Hiphop is my life & my message)
We rounded up the day with some delicious home cooked Tuwo Shinkafa
courtesy of Kano singer, Ali Jita. Watching everyone eat and trade
jokes with each other, it was evident that these young men and women
from Lagos and Kano had truly bonded.
The participants converged at Goethe Institut in the morning to continue their writing session. They rehearsed their respective lines and decided on the running order for their studio recording. After lunch, we all headed for the Stand Up Salute Studios in Sabongari.
2Tek & Mariah, jointly recorded a chorus for a song with the working title: “Learn To Love, Learn To Trust”. Afterwards, Vtime Faya, Kool Kid, Daman Sounds, Nomiis Gee and Snypa laced the beat with their respective 8-bars raps. Beautiful Hausa lyrics, and English and Hausa raps were recorded for a song addressing the drug problem which is prevalent amongst young people in the North.
Coordinating 12 MC’s can be quite challenging but everyone patiently waited their turn and supported one another
After an 11hour writing and recording session we called it a day.
Music is life (aside from the life God has given to me). I feel great and strong when I sing and listen to good music- Mariah Ugbashi
Hiphop is our first and last words. I use Hiphop as a tool to educate with good words and positive issues about life-Kool Kid
Music means a lot to me in terms of expressing my feelings and sending a message as well as entertaining at the same time-Nomis Gee
Music is my source of joy-Major Arlam
Hiphop is Life. Hiphop is an expression. Hiphop is language. Hiphop is culture!-Daman Sounds
Music helps me communicate. It motivates and uplifts my spirit-2Tek
Hiphop to me is a creative, contemporary medium of expressing myself without restriction- Mikkey CA
Dancehall to me is a unique style of music with it’s own language. It has so much positivity and love.-Special Agent Snypa
Musiq is Life, love.. Everything. No compromise-Vtime Faya
Music is all the joy I feel in life-Pastor Dan
Music is a passion, it is part of my religion.-Nura Nash
Hiphop is the avenue I use to express my feelings, the way I see things & understand them. I believe somebody is listening-Big Daddy Fresh
Hiphop is my means of expression. Hiphop is a way out. Hiphop brings about togetherness-Protek
Music is part of my life, it is in my blood, it is my job. It is what really keeps me alive-Ali Jita
Special Agent Snypa is a Reggae artiste. She has collaborated with aBigiano-“Shoyo(RM4)”, Keffee “Purre water”, Side One-“Trower”-Michael Priject Fame “Love you”, TESLEEM 2Wata waka”. She has also performed with like Beenieman, Pype, Side One & Buchi. Snypa is working on her album and a new video. Watch out for her single ‘Gyal on Point’, you can listen to it on face book. www.facebook.com/SNYPAFARIDAH
Mikkey CA is a rapper, a singer and a producer. He has worked and produced songs for Idris Abdukareem, Pasuma, Daddy Fresh and over 200 upcoming artistes, with songs and beats produced running into thousands. He leaves in Lagos (Ikeja). Released an album 1A 2004. He has built and setup over 60 studios for other producers and Cos with it all he is the Sound Engineer. He graduated from the University with a bachelor degree in English. Mikkey presently runs a production outfit ‘Beat doctors’
firstname.lastname@example.org // Hotgirl@4share.com
Kool Kid is a Hiphop artiste. He believes that his musical talent is a blessing from God. He has been in the Nigeria music industry since his secondary school days.
Kool Kid has worked with several artistes, which include: Eedris Abdukareem, Tony Tetuila, Ade Bantu and Several others.
Eedris Abdukareem Tracks: “Aro” “Mr lecturer 4”, “African child”, Tony Tetuila Tracks: Ejeka Rocking, Tesleem Inna za mu je, A-BI-DI, African pride, Ashley Stefany- Crazy for you.He is currently working on his album.
Protek is a gospel rapper based in Lagos. He is presently working on his first album. He has 2 MIXTAPES to his credit – “Zion Republican” and “THE MASTER’S CUT” respectively.
He has worked with various artistes both known and underground like: Waje Praiz, Rooftop mc, Lifeline, Samjamz, Provabs, Rapsody, Ill Bliss, B-Eled, Blaise, Matronomy etc
For more information, follow him on twitter @protekniks
Website: http://bit.ly/mlxWAn:-link to my single ft Praiz on Pray
2Tek Odey is an indigene of Cross River. He started his recording career in 2004. His brand of music is R&B/Dance Hall. 2Tek won the “Blazeup The Ghetto “ competition in 2011. He participated in the Borntrown project in Ajegunle, Lagos.He was featured on Vocal Slender’s album
Watch out for his new single “Rock me Girl”
Big Daddy Fresh was born in the city of Kano, in 1988. He attended Gawuna special primary school from 1995 to 2001. He then proceeded with his secondary school education from 2001 to 2007at GSS Stadium Kano. Presently he is studying Marketing at Kano State Polytechnic. He is a Hausa Musician - Hiphop and R&B
email@example.com // +234(0)8065756169.
Mohamed Nagudu was born in Kano in 1982. He started his primary school in 1990 and finished in 1995; and secondary school from1995 to 2001. After than he went into music industry where he started with Hausa films soundtracks, after which he made an album titled ‘Tatausan Lafazee’. Then he changed all his songs to Albu Zake (Lubiya Ajnabi). He composes and records all his songs in Hausa language.
VtimeFaya was born in Kano State. He had his primary and secondary education Kano before moving to the United States; where he attended Hawaii Pacific University. He has been into music all his life. His genre is Reggae and a bit of Hiphop.
Album: “Fire Burns” // Hit Songs: “Babylon(borrow, tears and blood)” “Fateemah” “Kilode”
Lt John was born on 8th May,1980. Studied Sound Engineering and Music Production at Audio Institute of America and read Mass Communication at University of Jos respectively. Lt John is a congenial person. He gets along very well with people. He is presently the General Overseer of STANDUP SALUTE MEDIA Kano and the in-house producer and sound engineer in G-Muzic Studios Lagos Nigeria. He has been successful and enjoys progress in training and working. He is single.
Nomiss Gee is an indigene of Kano State. A Hausa HIPHOP artiste with Naija Swaggar. who was born on 3rd Nov, 1976. He graduated from Bayero University Kano where he read Mass Communication. Watch out for his new single “Hobibi”.
Ali Jita is a Hausa musician based in Kano. He had his primary school education in Kano and Secondary school in Abuja. He is presently leaving in Kano.
Ali Jita has been in love music since his childhood. As a musician, Ali has gone through a lot in his career but he gives thanks to God for being one of the accepted voices Nigeria, Ghana, Niger and Cameroon. www.facebook.com/AliJita
firstname.lastname@example.org // +234(0)8036778472.
Major Arlman was born on 23rd July. An indigene of Kaduna state, he read Accounting at Ahmadu Bello University Zaria. He is a Producer and songwriter who specialized in Classic, R&B, Reggae and Rap. A Co-own and work with STADUP SALUTE MULTIMEDIA “The studios” Kano. He is a devoted Christian and engaged.
Daman Sounds is a Mathematician, MC and R&B singer. He is currently working on his debut album “Exponential”. He has performed alongside Vtimefaya, Kure Da Mesh and Darleens.
The facilitator must have anticipated what the sessions would be like when he put the sign at the door that said “Leave your Ego Outside” because as with when a lot of creatives are gathered in a place, there were arguments and opinions flying about the room as the artistes tried to agree on beats, tempo, lyrics, and choruses amongst other things.
It was a day of writing amongst the artistes as they came together in groups to write the lines for the different tracks they were working on. The producers in the group made and played beats in the background, and the artistes would occasionally step up to the lone microphone in the class room to sing, rap, or just goof around.
At about 3pm, we all went to the studio to put together what, 3 hours of singing, rapping and sweating later, would become the first concrete product of the Lagos-Kano Hiphop Connection workshop; the “Nigeria Unite” track.
At the end of this very long day, the artistes had finished writing 3 of the songs, recorded one fully and another partially. The day ended with morsels of pounded yam making the journey from tired fingers to even more fatigued mouths.
The participants from Lagos arrived at the Goethe Institut at about 10am. The participants from Kano also trooped in a little while later and the Director of the Institut, Frank Roger came in after the artistes were seated. Introductions were made, after which the facilitator of the project, Ade Bantu, explained the vision behind the workshop; bringing different artistes from different regions in Nigeria together to talk about the challenges facing the country, proffer solutions and foster unity through their music.
There was a discourse during which questions, arguments and clarification on different issues were raised.
This was followed by a brainstorming session where different topics were randomly raised for songs to be written on. The participants agreed on some of the topics and were asked to go back to their hotel rooms and write verses on them.
Special Agent Snypa, a reggae dancehall artiste from Lagos, described her day as enlightening. According to her, interacting with the artistes from Kano and working with them gave her a different perspective from the stories of religious and ethnic intolerance which were all she had previously heard about the people of Northern Nigeria.
After a rough night of very little sleep (thanks to a roaring generator set and a wedding party) the group took off from Zuba to Kano.
We had a brief stopover in Kaduna for breakfast and from there on it was smooth sailing all the way to Kano. What struck us all was the near perfect conditions of the roads and the absence of nagging police checkpoints, it almost felt like we were travelling in another country.
We checked into Hotel de France where Frank Roger, the director of the Goethe Kano liaison office received us all. From there we all trouped to the Goethe Office.
The road trip from Lagos to Kano was a big deal for the Lagos based artistes most of whom had never been to the North by road. The artistes didn’t quite know what to expect but since hiphop is all about spontaneity everyone decided to go with the flow.
The participants representing Lagos were recruited from a pool of rappers who had, in December 2010, participated in the first phase of the workshop series titled “Global Prayers”, so there was a familiarity amongst them that we hoped would help ease the stress of travelling.
At 8am, 6 artistes, a cameraman and a photographer (you have to document a road trip right?) took off from Ade Bantu’s home in a Goethe Insitut bus. The first leg of the journey was quite bumpy - no thanks to the countless potholes and the mandatory police checkpoints but we didn’t let that dampen our spirits. By the time we drove past Akure one could feel a certain ease as the beauty of the landscape which was dotted with hills and lush green kept us all spell bound.
One of the day’s highlights was an incident at Ibillo (where we had stopped to buy diesel for our bus). Protek, a rapper, suddenly proclaimed “we are in my village!” Nothing odd, no big deal we all thought at first till he confessed that it was his first time of being in his ancestral home. It was an emotional awakening as he called his folks to spread the news.
At 7:30pm, travel fatigued and hungry, we called it a day at Zuba where we checked into Riverview Hotel.
Lagos- Kano Hip Hop Connection was developed by Ade Bantu in co-operation with Goethe Institut Kano. The 7 day project is aimed at bridging the destructive gap of intolerance and ignorance through creativity, rhymes and music.
16 rappers & singers from Lagos and Kano will engage in creative writing and studio recording sessions. The project will culminate in a live performance at the Goethe Institut, Kano on the 30th of July.