Courtesy Shira Sozo

“God is a good God”

Hello my lovely people, I hope your week is going well! I am really excited to tell you that I will be sharing pieces on the artists of the Jamhuri Festivals Jam Session Series 🙂  I feel like you guys should also let me know what you want to know about them that way we can make this fun!

Our featured artist this week is the beautiful, bubbly and outgoing soul, Kendi Nkonge. This amazing woman is a lover of God, good meat, good people and most of all music. “I am always ready to grab opportunities and create them where there’s none to be grabbed” She says.

I got a chance to have a conversation with her and it was an experience like no other.

Courtesy Quaint Photography

Courtesy Quaint Photography

 

  • How do you get to convey who you are in your music?

I am a lover of music. Like legit!!! I LOVE to sing. I do it all the time. My music is from the heart! I tell stories, about me and about society. I preach change, positive impact and God’s Love. That’s what my music is, about healing and feeling! I can’t fit it into a genre yet but it sure is soulful and heavily vocal.

  • How did you get into music?

Music for me started way back, I started singing from when I was about 5. I Sang in church, I sang in school for plays, at assembly, just jamming with friends and even for guests in school. Every chance I’d get I’d just SING!

Courtesy Quaint Photography

Courtesy Quaint Photography

  • How did your parents take it?

My folks knew from the onset that music is my thing. (Laughs)  I think what I respect the most is that they want the best for me, it’s not what youngins want to see first but that’s what it is. I have to say though, different parents do it differently but mine are all I’ve got and I’m grateful.  We’re working the way up together.

  • Do you think children/youth should be encouraged to pursue their dreams?

Yes! Yes! A Million times yes! We should throw away the era of pursuing our folks dreams. I believe that when it’s your dream, no one needs to push you; no one needs to keep rubbing it in your face that you need to take it seriously. Plus isn’t it liberating being able to thrive doing what you love? Though the flip side happens when people use this as an escape not to be ‘serious’ in life or fail to do something substantial with the gifts they have. While children in many places don’t know the meaning and the importance of pursuing their dreams, Or rather they have been made to believe that poverty or suffering is all they’re destined for which just isn’t true.

  • What challenges do you face?

Lord! Balancing school with music is NOT easy! Well not Law school at least. So making sure that none of them suffers is quite a tough call but with God’s Grace I manage to do it. So I basically work to make sure that I miss NO classes and still work my way through rehearsal sessions and gigs.

  • What/Who inspires you?

Hmm. I’m honestly just very passionate about singing. It’s how I best express what’s in my heart . There’s a high that it comes with that which makes me want to wake up every day and just do it and do it well. Music just makes me so happy! As for who, I’d have to say like-minded people. As well as a couple of artists who seemingly sing from that same point of passion. For instance: Lauryn Hill, Tori Kelly, and Cece Winans among many others.

  • Are you seeing anyone?

The Lord is my personal Savior and I am happy and blessed!!(Laughs) Yes, I am. 

  • Have you done any collaboration?

I haven’t released any music yet. So the correct answer to that is no. I have however had the privilege of working with so many amazing artists performing live from Eric Wainaina, Atemi Oyungu, June Gachui, Shamsi Music, Rigga, Sage, David Hunter, Laura Karwirwa, Benjamin Webi, Elsaphan Njora, Noiz the Beatbox champion and the list is increasing!

Courtesy Quaint Photography

Courtesy Quaint Photography

  • How has Jamhuri Festival changed your career?

It has for sure exposed me to more people, other singers in particular. I love that Jamhuri Festival is one of those platforms that breaks beyond what’s mainstream, breaks the silence and pushes artists that are not very well-known and are uber talented to the rest of Kenya. Not many people invest in younger talent and that’s where loads of the gold is. I’m glad I get to share my music through this platform and get to watch and learn from other artistes too! It’s a healthy environment at Jamhuri Festival.

  • Any advise for the readers?

Terens! Terenssss! (This is my Wangari Maathai moment) I pray that we all find peace, healing and love through music and that all men will be drawn to their true calling in this life that we live. It sucks to sit and remember that there are people out there who are just out to put you down and spit on your success. But I always say, if it’s on a firm foundation then the spit will trickle right down like it never even happened. Be true to yourself. Please don’t live to please people, it’s tiring, it’s extremely draining. Just do you!

Courtesy Quaint Photography

Courtesy Yves Didier Photography

 

Don’t you love her already? Well I definitely do! Be sure to catch her performing live tonight at Nyama mama, Delta at 7:30 PM. 😀 

In the meantime do enjoy her cover of Fire on the mountain  😍

Keep up with Kendi and Jamhuri Festival:

Facebook – Kendi Nkonge, Jamhuri Festival
Instagram – @kendinkonge , @jamhurifestival
Twitter – Kendi Nkonge, Jamhuri Festival