December 16, 2010 – The fourth annual Kikwetu festival was held at the Impala grounds this weekend, in an event that brought together Kenya’s giants of live performance.
From Benga to Afro fusion, to Lingala to Afro-pop to Kapuka, it was a real African affair. Kicking off at 3pm, the stage held M.O.G, Chizi, Kenge Kenge, Linda, Juveh, and the UNICEF band performing to the crowd. Harry Kimani closed the day-performances performing golden oldies ‘Waithera and Haiya.”
For the evening schedule there was Asali, Abbi and Kikwetu and Suzanne Owiyo. Kidum performed his A-list alongside his daughter. The Burundian top-performer had the crowd screaming for an encore which they were rewarded with later in the night.
Uganda’s Eppy ushered in the Reggae mood while Jah Kay Marley seconded with three hits of the same genre. Playing ‘Rock’, was Danger, who started his performance at a rather embarrassing note with a public verbal outburst towards the emcee of the night, Otoyo.
Iddi Achieng’s performance was most entertaining with her Afro fusion tune combined with African moves displaying how much of a true African queen she is.
The night could not have been complete without some Kapuka. Juacali came on stage last with enough music to leave the crowd excited and seemingly unaffected by the cold. At 30 minutes to midnight, the event came to a close.
Elsewhere, Nollywood renowned actor and singer Patience Ozokwor alias Mama Gee performed at the Tafrija festival held at the Nigerian High commission diplomatic compound on Saturday, amid a dismal turn out.
The few who made it there thought the venue was hidden and unreachable to many Kenyans using public transport.
“They should have taken this event to a more known venue like impala or KICC,” said one of the attendees.
The ground was flooded after an all-night treat from the rain gods, messing up the dance floor. The late Saturday afternoon showers did not help either.
Asked about her expectations of her reception in Kenya and her general feelings on the event, the good-hearted Mama Gee was positive and understood the situation. “It’s a public holiday weekend in Kenya and most Kenyans must have travelled upcountry for the long break. Again, the weather is not favourable and most people must be at home now,” she mused.
Most of the artists who were meant to perform were hesitant to treat just a small crowd.
“I was going to perform my newly recorded hit but now am not sure if I will,” said the ex-project fame house-mate Juveh. Most of the artists left before it the event began claiming that is not what they expected.
Performances from Mrya and Moustapha and Nigerian dancers did however move the crowd.
Kenyans have shown a lot of love for Mama Gee and they really did miss out on the opportunity to meet her. To her die-hard fans, she will be in Uganda this weekend.