13 January 2013

Uganda: Sheebah Launches Kambalage

I remember the first time I saw Sheebah Karungi.

It was at the Club Silk street jam, 2007. Beautiful face, great body, and she was with the Obsessions. As the new face in an already established group at the time, her debut didn't come with pomp or hype; many of the revellers at the street jam probably didn't even notice her, given the fact that she was replacing a multi-talented Cleopatra Koheirwe. Sheebah had to be patient with the public.

Sheebah's real shot at prominence came in 2008, when the Obsessions suffered the exodus of long-serving members Helen Lukoma and Brenda Nambi. They had left to form HB Toxic. Even the new girl, Mya Bagenda, left to replace Cindy Sanyu in Blu3, allowing Sheebah to finally shine at Obsessions. After more than two years, in 2010, Sheebah ended her musical marriage with the group to embark on a solo career. She has since recorded songs such as Nsindika Njake, Buli Kyenkola and the fans' favourite, Automatic, a collaboration with Sizzaman.

Mid last year she hit the studios and released Nsali, another danceable song. We waited for a mega launch or listeners' party in vain. So, you can imagine my excitement when I learnt of a new video Sheebah was launching at Club Venom last Wednesday. It turned out to be a colourful night although by 9pm, there was no sign of a launch; I had to confirm with the ushers that I wasn't lost. She eventually garnered a fair turn-up and as you could imagine, men outnumbered the women.

At about 11:30pm, the girl of night arrived with her pal Keko and some of her family members. Before the video could be unveiled, Amooti of the Amarula Family set the mood with a couple of jokes. Then Kambalage, the new video, was premiered on eight screens to Sheebah's excited and screaming fans. The three-minute video is strong on colour and boasts good editing, for a Ugandan video.

The song was produced by Kalli Wid and written by Don MC; the video was shot and directed by Ark Menz. Sheebah later performed the song on stage, with a couple of her older hits. The do was also attended by Kenzo, Don MC, Baboon Forest, and Vampino, among others.

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