East Africa music summit set to kick off in Kenya

For four days, music enthusiasts and business people will converge in Kenya’s capital to network and explore opportunities as the Ongea Music Week gets underway between 28 and 31 January at the Sarit Centre mall. More than 58 exhibitors and 32 artists are scheduled to participate at the summit.

Kenyan artist Mswazzi Masauti. Photo: machampali.blogspot.com
Kenyan artist Mswazzi Masauti. Photo: machampali.blogspot.com

For festival bookers this will be a great hunting ground to spot some of Kenya’s emerging talent - and Ongea will not disappoint. Anyone attending the summit can expect to experience new artists who are likely to shake the music scene in Kenya in 2016. Singer and songwriter Mswazzi Masauti (aka Ali Mohammed Said) is a relatively new voice on the Kenyan music scene. The artist, who released his debut single 'Mahabuba' in November 2015, will wow the audience with his voice and unique style. 'Mahabuba' is the debut release on SwaRnB Records, Kenya's newest premier record label headed by Tedd Josiah, a pioneer in Kenyan music and video production. Mswazzi is the first face of SwaRnB Records.

Other artists lined up to perform are Uganda’s Suzan Kerunen, Makadem, H_ART the band, Adawnage, Kidum, Wyre, Sali Oyugi, Ms Okinda, Parking Lot Grass and Cannibal, among others.

The summit is built on three pillars: trade, learning and showcase. Artists who are keen on reaching new audiences have a great opportunity to meet festival bookers. Among the festival bookers slated to be at the summit include Patrick De Groote from the European Forum of Worldwide Music Festival (EFWMF), who also the director of Sfinks Festival and Zoomer Festival in Belgium. Another festival booker that artists can look forward to meeting at the summit is Brahim El Mazned, the founder and artistic director of Timitar Festival and Visa For Music (VFM) in Morocco. More festival bookers are expected from across Africa, North America, Asia and Europe. 

Music In Africa is among the exhibitors who will be at the summit. Artists can find out more about the platform and sign up on the platforms directory by visiting the Music In Africa stand.

For anyone serious about the music business in Nairobi, the Ongea Summit is one of the events that they should attend. Formerly known as Kenya Music Week, Ongea will be held for the first time following the rebrand, which according to the organizers is to increase the relevance of the annual event. Kenya Music Week had been held since 2004. For more information visit the summit’s website.

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