All Hail The Smash Hit Smiths!

Written by on December 10, 2019

2019 has had its fair share of hits. It is quite one of the best years in Kenyan music,after a long time
of conversations pertaining to the infiltration of foreign music into our market. Behind these hits are
witty,utterly talented songwriters whose pen-game and artistic ingenuity goes without saying. They
penned some of the most played hits of this year:

Nviiri The Storyteller

He is the brains behind Sauti Sol’s juggernaut hit Melanin. The viral hit has garnered 16 million views
on YouTube so far, and he attributes his songwriting career to the success of Melanin. His star power
still bubbling under,he was then featured on Extravaganza,the hit that enlisted the now renowned
Sol Generation. The success of the latter catapulted his career to new heights,and he has gone on to
pen and release back to back hits like Pombe Sigara and Overdose,all of which have had a good
chunk of chart success. He says he has writing credits on yet to be released records.

Yet another member of Sol Generation,the soulful Bensoul was introduced to us on Extravaganza,but
who knew that the dreadlocked lad had songwriting credits on so many records. Having previously
worked with bigwigs like Burnaboy and Kidum,his star could not shine any brighter. He has had quite
the successful year with the sultry self-penned singles Lucy and Favorite Song. The multi-
instrumentalist could play the guitar at 12,so it is an absolute no-brainer that his music boasts of a
heavy guitar groove.

What to say about a man who drops bangers with such close succession? His pen game is
incomparable and that has been evident since his triumphant comeback into the music scene a little
more than 4 years after a hiatus that almost rendered him forgotten. He co-wrote his and Juma Jux’s
hit In Case You Don’t Know, and followed it up with Marathon Runner, both of which have been
huge hits this year.

Moji Shortbabaa
He is one of the hidden faces behind some popular gospel hits. The pint-sized singer and a half of
Kelele Takatifu not only writes his own music, but has also extended his pensmith by writing songs
for fellow musicians. Notably,he wrote Kijana Wa Kayole and Kwa Yesu Sawa for DK Kwenye Beat.


Victoria Kimani
Seeing as she kickstarted her music career as a songwriter in the US,it should come as no surprise
that her catalogue-almost in its entirety-is self-penned. After the success of China Love last year,she followed it up with the catchy number Wonka. The consequent collaborations with AY and the latest
with Hart the Band,Bad Manners,are all testament to her shrewd expertise with wordplay.

He’s Kenya’s most renowned gospel songwriter. He has previously penned songs for Mercy Masika
and Makena. This year,he wrote a song for Amani G, the little Githurai girl who rose to fame after a
video of her singing her rendition of Alicia Keys’ Girl on Fire went viral. He also won Songwriter of the
Year at this year’s Groove Awards.

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