Skobo Fugee, (aka Skobo Jesuit Kusini, aka Skobo Fuu, aka Bosco ) was an emcee who lived in Mombasa and Dandora. Despite severe obstacles thruout his life, he managed to put together a catalogue of impressive music that pushed hip hop forward, and brought positive vibes to the people around him. He will be sorely missed, and fondly remembered by everyone who had the opportunity to meet him and his music. Pole sana
Also, I think it’s important to say, the generations of economic war that mababis have waged on villagers, including people forced to grow up rough like Skobo, must be resisted by anyone who claims hip hop. This tragedy did not need to happen. Skobo was too young. We must do better.
Below is a collection of some of Skobo’s music:
This Is The Life – Ananda, Skobo, Flamez Mshamba Mwenza, Smallz Lethal ( Washamba Wenza , A-World )
Careless Whispers – Frankwest Mshamba Mwenza, Skobo
Amefall Na G – Ananda, Young Bob ( aka Bosco Baya ), Skobo, Kaktus Kusini ( A-World, Audio Kusini )
Unga Unga – Kidis, Ekori, Skobo, Kaktus ( Audio Kusini )
Tumechoka – Kidis, Silver, Skobo, Ekori Turkana, Gas Fyatu, Edu Doo Mambo, Kevlexicon, Kaktus ( Okoa Hip Hop Project, Audio Kusini )
Living It, Loving It – Skobo, Silver, Liqweed, Ekori Turkana, Kevlexicon, Kaktus Kusini
Kitu ni ka hio – 32 Records
Sahaulika – Ekori Turkana, Skobo, Gas Fyatu, Blackfella, Edu Doo Mambo, Kaktus, Kevlexicon ( Audio Kusini )
Has anyone swam in the river
Shivers, beer to liver
Cold as ice
Yet a furnace, sewer, rats, dark, roaches
Pet-a surface, alleys, cats, death poaches
Daily strife. Dusk to dawn
You sink, it stinks, you drown, and it’s a Town
A Nation, an Ocean of people,
A Continent of the simple-crippled by the strong waves
In abundance of food, famine rule
Despair, Diseases, forgotten
(Music)Abba dance of paradise
Like a drum, police pronounced kicks
Slums announce sick…..
People. Struggle a breast, poverty a nipple
Poor man a tick, rich man a hippo
Am Hip Hop, Rasta, Pastor, a prophet, a soldier, a voice?
A swimmer in this dusty river
Call it river Idd Amin or Hitler
They are crowning the King, am drowning
When I resurface a bee sting
On my forehead. My age mates are dead,
AIDS, Hunger, Crime, stray bullets
Single Mothers, stray shots
Running water, pot leaking
River concrete jungle, ghetto, a lion jungle
To be free, climb on treetop
It takes two to tangle.
Written on 24th-12-2005
Can a Man live like this?
Everyday of his life and strife
Breathe a -dew, which dries with sunrise
A death which resurrect on a new day
A leaf that shine, its youth pale
They say it is a Sea. Now I see
We sail with hope
When the sea is calm or rough
Yes we Love, moan, groan, we laugh
Yes we cry, we try, and last we die
Trod on Earth protected by heaven
Don’t worry my Cinderella
As they talk to god Bacchus
Tasted fruit is sweet, not eaten sweeter
Later she will create a crater of betrayal
But are he is loyal, she is royal.
Happiness (april 2006)
Happiness is not a land far away
It is like a hand you see everyday
Paradise of eternity
A price per dice to enter the city
Kings and slave strive, why? Ask the almighty
Eyes dusty to see the soul
That’s why we receive, bowls of ignorance
It is a thin hem on a garment
Like a vein transporting blood
But never wrong
Amidst of flood, the life jacket
Amidst of death, the life jacket
To protect, we just need to project,
Our inner eyes, away from illusion, yes passion
Happy land is perfect nation
Life (august 2007)
This life is boring
This life is bowling
The balls without scoring
It is growing
Drawing one destiny
Dawning of reality
Cloning with fantasy
But destiny you yawn
Reality you own
It is lonely at the top
Brains smoke like formula one car exhaust
Hitting the roof top
Sitting with proof cop
Stop to reminisce
The journey, the chili pepper tingles.
Rain is coming
Wind is moaning
Fire is burning
A life is humming
Soldiers are fighting
The enemies are arming
Moon, soon, monsoon winds
Sun run, Stars shine
War. Peace. Stability. Life force.
a vessel. in the sea.
Only rumors. man is.
MY love(2011 march 13)
It is 2 A.m
Nothing looks the same
All I can do is just whisper her name
Can’t shout my voice is lame
Nothing but darkness, stuck ness in her web
Though the stars try to shine from far
And moon lends a hand
An attempt to light up my soul
Still I have to wait till dawn, on the lawn, alone
For the Sun coz she is my sunshine
I stepped on a landmine
I can’t move my foot, lest it blows
The damage all mine
Like a greedy businessman
I dug the mine
Found the Diamonds,
Like a poor man I beg
Who will tell her she is the almond
I need to break,
My heart has trekked
With my lips
Many i have pecked
But nothing can compare
To my alter ego
She is an eagle, when she flies
Can someone tell her she is guilty?
But am ready to grant her amnesty
Love is sweet(2011 march 15)
Love is sweet /love is a pit if you fall/
But don’t worry the ground is mattress not a quarry
Let caress you hurry hurry bury
Me in your embrace/I might marry you
Be my empress/I wish I could tenderly press
Your nipple and watch that ripples/the flush
As I explore your rose’s garden/well this coffees dates I wish they were
Followed by thunder and storm, ooh that gooey feeling
How it taketh me the vibration each way free.
Mwangi Mahugu a.k.a Gas Fyatu is
one of the leading underground rappers in Kenya and a pioneer sheng
writer. He ventured in the hip hop scene in the year 2000, but his
interest started in primary school. He went on to be an active member of Music and Drama clubs and has several certificates for his outstanding performances.
He joined the rap crew Mau Mau camp, who hail from his neighborhood
Dandora Estate, a ghetto in the Eastland’s of Nairobi. What interested
him was the poetry and the choice of music; social conscious music
promoting Love, Peace and Harmony. He soon started to play around with
words, attending freestyles battles.
He teamed up with fellow rappers Zaka & BlackGzas to form the group Moshikali. As a group they released their first single in 200I “Ushapotea ” and went on to
perform in various venues, most notably the Nation TV’s music
program “The Warehouse” since there were no music videos at the time.
The same year while a student at the Kenya Christian Industrial
Training Institute (K.C.I.T.I) studying Computer Science, the college
library opened the world of literature.
He started writing fictions and commentaries and sharing them with
friends. People were very positive and encouraged him to explore his
talent in writing, The Rap monks Kalamashaka approached him to write
profiles for their tour and for websites, word spread in the streets
and another Rap group Mashifta, and other artists joined the wagon.
Gas Fyatu acted as the publicist of the Nairobi Mau Mau Camp and the Mombasa affiliates, Ukooflani mau mau. Later he became the manager of East Africa’s biggest Hip hop movement, Ukoo flani mau mau.
He was doing this voluntary and over the years he has gained vast
experience, street credibility, networks and [a familiarity with] the general atmosphere in the music industry. He continued multi- tasking, college work, writing, releasing singles in the streets, as solo artist and also as a group, while acting as the secretary of the Maono cultural group, an organization helping
young street kids to develop their talents in [Acrobatics], music,
traditional dances, football and capoeira. On the end of 2002 he
graduated with a diploma in computer science, and worked for four
months for Optical technologies and small systems solution firm in
He is a one of the published writers in the East African literary journal, Kwani, 2004 and 2008. Kwani promotes refined literature and Mwas has participated in various literature workshops involving local and international artist; Summer literary Seminar (SLS 2004/5,The East Africa Writers Summit 2006 and continues to be a regular participant of the monthly Kwani Open Mic Sessions, his sheng novel will be out next year.
With Kilio Cha Haki (a cry for justice) an album compilation comprising of
38 rappers from the Eastland’s Nairobi, Gas Fyatu took the skills he had
attained and went on to work as an event organizer, coordinator,
distributior as well as a performing artist. The album was sponsored by
Youth initiative Kenya and a Netherlands organization.
In 2005 He released the chartbuster single “Hustle” recorded at Soul
Child studios, which took the streets by storm. It was a single to inspire
the youth to keeping hustling despite the hardship in the streets. In April he performed with two French Djs, Oil and Sharell, and was the organizer of workshop involving Ukoo flani mau mau. He performed at Carnivore along side Kalamashaka, Mashifta, Gidi Gidi Maji Maji among others, and during the Senegalese Didier Awadi.
Also participating in the “messenger of truth’s concert; Mwangi Mahugu has been in arts scene for a decade.
2009 he was a selected panelist in UN habitat urban arts Summit.
Representing Sauti initiative, his debut mixtape Machimbo archive is
in the streets, last but not least December 2010 he performed at
Ghetto radio Fight Aids initiative along side Kidum and is currently
working on his album dubbed Gas chamber.
He also acts as the East Africa Rise Up project coordinator in Nairobi, a
project uniting musical artists across East Africa. He is also operates an urban
music and literature distribution outlet along Tom Mboya street ,city
Gas Fyatu is a writer, entrepreneur and emcee from Nairobi. He is a member of the rap groups Ukoo Flani Mau Mau and Moshikali. You can find his music on reverbnation, youtube and soundcloud. His writing can be found in Kwani? published by Kwani Trust. Peep his poems. He is also on twitter.
[Kevlexicon made typographical edits]
Where are you from, What was it like growing up?
Dandora I grew up in Nairobi eastland inner city dandora, growing was
normal life for ghetto childrens with parents working in industrial
What kind of hustles were people involved in?
In dandora there were all sort of small business, small kiosks, selling
scrap metals, matatu touts, vegetable vendors, mandazi and chapatti or
roadside. basically hawkers everywhere
What was the Mau Mau camp like? (Is it still in operation?)
Mau mau camp was born on the alleys of dandora by youth with a love
for hip hop music and yearning for a change. There was so much police
harassment and unemployment rate was very high. We found solace in
music and formed a street family, unlike the freedom fighters with guns
and spears, we decided to use microphones and pencils as missiles to
fight for change and to decolonize minds. Mau mau became a hub for
art, football acrobatics and rehabilitation, and it spread all over.
Maumau still exist as know east African movement called
ukooflanimaumau with members all over east Africa cities and towns.
What does hip hop mean to you, What motivated you to become involved
in Hip Hop?
I loved music and drama from a tender age. In high
school, I was composing poems in Swahili and competed up to the
national levels. Meanwhile, while I was still in school, kalamashaka
were taking Kenya with their single “tafsiri hii” so when I cleared high
school I joined mau mau camp which was a street hang out for people
with a love for conscious music. Edutainment- precisely. So to me hip
hop is a way of life, a positive way of life; preaching peace, love, and
I use the hip hop platform to pass positive messages to the community
and spread love and preach peace. Through hip hop, I got independence
to highlight [the] social, political and economic environment in my hood and
country. Hip hop is the voice of the African youth, it is the ray of
light for an Africa youth facing struggle out of poverty and freedom.
Hip-Hop’s impact origins date back as far as late 80’s, the fire was
burning in Tanzania. Groups like Kwanza Unit, Hard Blasters, The
Diplomatz, Mr 2. In the 90’s Kenya rap scene flourished. Pioneering
groups like Kalamashaka, K-South, Fundi Frank and Cash D set the scene
using their vernacular language to win the hearts of many. Similar
growth was happening in Kampala, with groups like, Kado based in
Sweden and Klear kut. DJ’s took their stand like Dj Pinye, Dj Adrian,
Skratchaholics, the homeboyz, setting their wheels of steel blazing
with creativity. B-boys grabbed the stage too. Kenyans took graffiti
to another level by using public service vehicles as their canvas, known as the
matatu culture. [Note: Matatu’s are the cheapest form of public transportation. Matatus are minibuses that are often colorfully decorated with the likenesses of hip hop artists and celebrities. Inside, you can hear the video mixtapes put together by college students.]
Hip hop made such a proud stand that the political scene used the music to prosper the presidential campaign. African youth can, in one voice (through hip hop), air [the] social, political climate in their societies. Hip hop is culture, a way of life and is represented by: [rap] Emceeing, Dj-ing, graffiti arts, Break dance and street
entrepreneurship. The above elements have effectively taken shape in
Kenya, the underground art has no space in the mainstream media; when
many youth are busy involving themselves crime and the drugs, we have
these creative artists who spend days, months and even years either
painting, designing, composing, and putting their creativity at work
and when they are done, they hit the street hawking their art and most
of the time they fall in the hands of people who do not appreciate
art and are just interested in the monetary gains.
Hip-hop, I feel is being marketed by multi-nationals to work to the
benefit of their pockets. Although they have financial advantage over
us, we on the other hand have people power globally and with
networking ability to change the power of the status quo
hip-hop is a culture and way of life!
When you live hip-hop, you become hip-hop. Below we display 5 main
elements of Hip-hop:
This is awareness of self, about who you are, being independent
minded, individualism, acceptance of self. Being ‘real’ and ‘true’ to
This was a street level form of communication (although recently it
has now become a major [form]) of relaying a message with clever use of
flowing words, poetry and rhyming.
An innovative form of creating music from sampling and cutting and
scratching records to form a style of music initially unique only to
4. Break dancing
This is an art of dancing composed of movements, which makes the dancer
look like he is literally breaking. It comprises of many
[movements] such as bopping, waves, body spins and is also incorporated with
Capoeira another form of dance expression who’s origins came from
slaves who spent their time with their hand and feet chained and used
it as a way to exercise/dance/fight (while chained) without being
discovered; for neither of the above were allowed and a death penalty
would follow if one was discovered practicing any of them.
5. Graffiti art
This was the underground visual way of relaying messages by spraypainting public spaces, like street walls, in a colorful artistic form and style with illustrations and special scriptures that [were] only understood by hip hop’s people.
What type of community organizations, informal or formal are helping
vijana in Nairobi leo?
Young people have formed groups and are taking loans from banks to do
small business as for community organisations. i know mathare
youthsports association and ukooflanimaumau.
UPDATE: 29 August, 2013: New Video from BlackGzas, “Hata Kama” ft. Dr Jahson & King Dito
UPDATE: 31 March, 2013: Check out some of the community work Black Gzas and Warriors From the East are doing in Tanzania at Warriors One Love Community Centre.
[Kevlexicon made typographical edits]
• Kevin Teryek Kusini
i would like to send u some interview questions if thats cool,
give people a sense of what life and hiphop is like in kenya
dadi is my nick name which symbolises the street code name of dandora
in short we call it di n blackgzas is a reflection of the savior of
the world.. Though now i relate it to hip hop n the society where i came
from or every ghetto..
o The place i come is called a ghetto aka dandora… Filled with
drugs, prostitution.. Crime, robberies, murders.. But most of things
happen for a reason. 1 is lack of proper livin condition..
2 is a place also known as the Hiphop city… It’s the place which
pioneered the music industry in kenya.. •
Kevin Teryek Kusini
o yeh man, asante for takin the time. If I could suggest, tafadhali,
give some details…maybe try to paint images of people and
life in the mind’s eye, like when you rap. sawaz, bro, good stuff,
tho, thank you.
o Okay let me try.. Though im gud at narratin n not with writtin…
Life Mine Is a very long story but I’ll try to b very brief, was born in
a hospital knwn as pumwani maternity n luckily cos this is one of the
best government hospital n its not 4 he rich but 4 the middle class you
know what i mean but whereby the society i come from majority could not
even afford it at that tym. N it’s in the midle of different estate or
ghettos around nairobi @eastleigh, pumwani also knwn as majengo, california,
biafra n ziwani sorounding the hospital. Located near the city.
N at that tym my parents were both stayin in dandora the hip hop
city.. N my father was raised mostly in the city the place called
ziwani thats where their father was coz he has 2 sis n 2 bros. N my mother
im not sure about her but i know her mother was livin n the majengo area
n i forgot starehe but also is the constituency which carries all the
mentioned ghettos surroundin pumwani maternity..
N growin up at about
5yrs my parents broke up reason thought of religion. my dad family
christian n my mum muslim n from there a new journey began.. My dad
didn’t hav money or a good job he got employed at the kenya cooperative
creameries k..c.c bcos of his talent in football so that he could play
4 the company’s football team…
Kevin Teryek Kusini
o sawa bro, thanks. Yeh mon, this is good..
o One day it was night n I was in taon n it was a day that richie spice
had come to nairobi for a concert n dude as you knpw the reggae vibe in
kenya n it was around 10pm n there i was waitin for matatu to go home
since I wasnt goin to concert n there came these guys wantin to rob from
me n you knw what they told me that I’m lucky since they reached near me
n saw that i had rasta they told me that they’re hustlin n they didn’t
hav money to go for the concert so they want to rob n i gave them
inspiration tho i dont know if they went ahead to do what they think is
But thats 1 way that music has changed my life n changed others
who listen to our music ukooflani maumau.. Most youths are caught up
in the struggle an end up doin those kind of tingz.
Kevin Teryek Kusini
o sawa bro
17 hours ago
o Life as an artist is hard you know, its a struggle cos there are many
obstacles n i guess its not just music but iv learned everythin in life
although we all dont go thru the same path.. Sam get it soft sam get it
ruff.. But to my side God is great i haven’t really reached that place
but am strivin on, movin on, i dont knw how long but am playin my
part.. Right now am with the warriors in Tanzania n we r launchin a
joint project we hav done together fusion of hip hop reggae n dance
hall.. Album called voice of the ghetto yu can check it on the
http://www.eastafricantunes.com n we launchin it this fri 12th then hopefully
God willin, in the end month we should b in Ethiopia we hav been invited
by the crown prince himself grandson to his majesty
9 hours ago
o Ukoofani maumau has really been my n many’s mentor up to now I’ve
learned a lot in the music industry n life it self n am still learnin.
But there are still obstacles at the moment we need at least 2 or 3
videos to promote the album.. N you know the price of video shootin here
Kevin Teryek Kusini
if you wanna talk about your experience, what you know
about how the youths are living so that they have to do that and what
rastafaris have done to build positive relationship with youths. That
could really turn into something if you say more.
2 hours ago
Yeah… so wen we started we formed a group calld Moshikali n
it consisted of me Gas n Zakah now in Wenyeji n the name came from the
biggest dump site in Africa, based in dandora, n everyday you would wake
in the mornin and it was filled with this big cloud of smoke from the
burnin of garbage n we were also advocatin for this bcos it was a
health hazard to the locals n the surroundin ghettos..we did our 1st
single called “ushapotea” meanin “ur lost” n it received good airplay from
the local stations that was back in 2000 n there were only 2 fm
stations in kenya.
about an hour ago
o N it managed to get us small gigs n at that time rasta had a negative
image bcos reggae in kenya that time was a violent music people was not
listenin to the mess n so when put dread locks as the ukoofalni maumau
which was mostly inspired by the freedom fighters we [brought] another
picture n bcos we were doin positive mess in our music n the youths
started relatin with the vybe n so we changed the youths by showing
them who rasta is really. like is about consciousness n it took a while b4
people understood us. N so later on everybody in the group Moshikali
went solo after doin some different tracks together. N here we are
still the struggle continues.
Now everybody listens to reggae even in the uptown society which was not in some few years back.. N most of the youths hav changed especially from the ghettos by knowin that you can do what is best with ur talent… And from there music scene in kenya has become big in different categories but it all started from hip hop..
about an hour ago
o So personally i decided that i want to do live music with a band n
thats y am here in tanzania bcos in nairobi you knw live music is not
much heard especially with hiphop. with the wariors now we want to do an
east african tour but still we r trying to look for sponsors, then also
we can start lookin for festivals abroad maybe from next year.
a few seconds ago
Kevin Teryek Kusini
o great man, that bit about the origins of ‘moshikali’, the group w u
zaka and gas, and it was named after the burning garbage in mtaani,
really poetic and political stuff man, i love it. The part about the
misunderstood rastas is great too man, yeh, now we are on to something. Asante sana bro
9 hours ago
o Yeah how r you kev? Hope ur doin well.. Then personally it being a
long road when we as maumau did the album called “kilio cha haki” meanin
“a cry 4 justice” which was a project supported by the dutch people n it
feutured rha godess frm NYC, USA. it was a big breakthru n it also
featured other artist from eastlands. N was also initiated by yike
youth initiative kenya an n.g.o
the name ukooflani mau mau became big.. N from that project we got a computer and a good microphone 4 recordin n the supported by kwani we managed to set up our own studio, Andaki records which chizen brain was the producer n from that we did the “Dandora burning” album, but things dint go well bcos of poor managent n
from that tym it was a big lesson to me that as an artist bein in
a group can really samtym cost you if ur not careful
…n by this i mean that i personally was waitin for my
tym to come cos at that tym i was a solo artist but dint hav a clear
vision as a solo artist.. So i wasted or i did not see the
opportunities around me n men the name at that tym was a passport to
anywhere.. You know.
But i was just also in a difficult situation i didn’t hav a place to stay so sometyms i used to sleep at the studio with chizen brain n johhny of kalamashaka. we were all homeless me, my aunt who i was livin with had kicked me out of the house dint hav no job so even gettin food was a big problem.. N luckily or i dont know what to
call it, but i call it a blessin my girlfriend got pregnant n she didn’t
hav work she was livin with her friend so i was playin daddy’s role
with no home had try to provide for them until my son was born, still in
in the same situation.. So i was confused deeply lost my focus…. Men
i stop there cos we r rehearsing right now I think they r all waitin for
me … Badae i continue pamoja
2 seconds ago
Kevin Teryek Kusini
o wow, man. that’s intense. what did you find uaself doing day-to-day?
this is gud stuff, man. thank you… I
remember u said you used to do construction and work only to get
enough money to eat to keep you strong enough to keep working. Tell us
about that manzee, wowowow!
• Blackgzas Dadi
• Yeah i thought that music isnt payin n i was about to give up in search a way that i first go make some money then i do music. But it wasnt easy cos the construction work doesn’t pay i found out that i would do that for life cos it was like hand to mouth you get the pay today n spend the money the same day for food n could barely save then i thought of how hard we worked the whole day in the sun sometimes carryin sand to the fifth floor of a buildin in a sack on the shoulder n men when yu reach home yur tired n just sleep..
• I worked for lyk 6 months n didn’t hav any extra money besides payin the rent n meals. i almost at that tym got crazy n i asked my self did God create me to do this with my life n im not sayin that it’s bad to work as a construction worker but myself i thought of it as colonization, cos we worked buildin after that the beneficiary is the owner of the house in case you get sick or injured in the place of work nobody cares, no insurance cos its a day job n it’s not guaranteed that tomorrow you will get to work again they decide to stop, you cant do anythin… And that nothin was promised
• Blackgzas Dadi
• So i decided to stop. [I’d] rather struggle with makin my dream come true which up to now im on my way.. N i moved from kitengela n went to live in Kayole coz Kitengela is far from town Nairobi n the transport was very expensive n as you know, the music industry the studios are all in nairobi or a little far from the city n after that, that’s when we linked with Gas [Fyatu] to open the distribution shop Sauti Sahara [Voice of the Sahara]… I cant tell how we managed to pay the shop it was a mystery n hustle too but from being paid from the construction work 250 KSH we raised 80000ksh just for startin the shop. it was hope for many artists n was a big challenge. imagine how long i would hav worked at the construction to get that amount of money.. Miracles do really happen yeah… Unity is strength cos it was a light though it got harder that after, almost a year payin the rent of 15000ksh every month …
• in january i shuld b startin a new chapter.. N i came to Arusha cos i always wanted to play with a band n do live music… I had worked wth the warrior durin my last vists in tz n now we launched the voices of the ghetto album on fri in arusha it was a gud launch n this fri we will b in moshi.. N the strugge continue we aim tourin east africa first coz on the 2nd november we r invited in Ethiopia for the shammaball, thats the day when king Sellasie was crowned so the crown prince of ethiopie invited us you can listen to the Voices of the ghetto album on http://www.eastafricantunes.com n tell me what yu think.. We av fused hip hop n dance hall n reggae.. Incase yu need mo info let me knw… Tuko pa1 ukooflani maumau still strong being represented now all over the world you know Kama is in the states Roba of wenyeji is in france..etc so its a blessin. Peace
Kevin Teryek Kusini
• bless, bro. indeed, now you’re telling me good stuff for the youth to know, I feel. yeh man,