Kenya: Akuku Danger Keeping Rhumba Alive

20 September 2020

Despite having kept a low profile lately, Rhumba musician Akuku Danger remains one of the most promising singers on the local music scene...Not to be confused with his namesake a comedian, Akuku is optimistic that despite the current challenges for artistes will gradually return to normal.

Speaking to Nation on Friday the musician said he had completed recording a song dedicated to the Covid-19 pandemic which he hopes to have released in the near future.

"It hasn't been easy for most of us artistes in the last few months particularly with entertainment spots still closed but we are optimistic that the situation will improve as we continue rehearsing for shows, "he said.

Akuku (Jared Okoth Ndede) is no new comer to the music scene having made his debut as a contemporary solo musician in 2004 specialising in the "Kapuka' genre.

It was during this time that he did most of his recordings with the Scratch Records where he recorded tracks like "PeopleWanna", "Giri Giri" and "Sinyorita".

However he made his breakthrough both as a Benga and Rhumba musician when he started recording with veteran producer Tabu Osusa's Ketebul Studios in 2007.

"It was while with Osusa that I got the opportunity of interacting with both Benga and Rhumba musicians like the legendary Benga maestro Ochieng Nelly, " he said.

From 2010 to 2014 Akuku was a touring back singer with Nelly till he met London -based Congolese musician Fiston Lusambo in 2015.

Akuku recalls it was Fiston who made a turning point in his career having featured him as a back singer on tracks like "Kukosa" and "Maisha" which he recorded at the Ketebul Studios. This also gave Akuku the opportunity to record alongside renowned Congolese singers like General Defao, Bozi Boziana and Nzaya Nzayadio.

Late last year when Fiston toured Kenya again, Akuku was among those who took part in recording sessions of a Kenya musical project by Fiston.

"It has been encouraging working alongside Fiston who has inspired me as a Rhumba musician, " he said.

Other than backing others, Akuku has also continued working on his own songs like the .latest "Corona' and several other yet to be released tracks.

He looks forward to working with more local and foreign musicians.

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