Last weekend I had the privilege of attending a Borana wedding. It was a Muslim wedding so you know glamour and food were in plenty. I have attended plenty of Somali weddings but this was the first Borana wedding I’d attended. In the evening, they had a live band entertain the guests before the bride pulled in looking like Cinderella with both glass slippers.
The music was the most soulful music I had heard played live after benga and lingala. I was mesmerized. The reggae flow in it made it easy to move to the rhythm even for ninjas like me who barely move more than heads when dancing. The guests danced to the tune by the beat and now I’m on my way to the Northern corridor to find myself a Borana wife.
This week I was a bit blank on the track to cover so Sakina helped me choose a jam. First time I met Sakina I knew she’d have made it at Bomas of Kenya as a songwriter and this track further embeds that notion. I had never heard of the name Vicmass Luodollar and how she stumbled upon the guy is another thing altogether.
So Mr. Vicmass has this track; Bank Otuch. The guy is simply telling his audience, I’ve got mullah. I am not Luo but I have interacted with a lot of people from the lakeside and that’s where my ancestral home is so I have knowledge of the dialect. The moment the guy makes that weird sound at the beginning of the track and introduces himself I knew I was in for plenty of lines revolving around his prowess in different areas of his life.
The video is set in a studio, with a couch, a few ladies and his suit. He kept it Luo and kicks off the track flowing in Dholuo before switching to English then throwing in some Swahili. His lyrics revolve around his ability and his ambition. His flow is very interesting and is somewhat close to the style of the late Wikimosh.
The hook is infectious. I can still hear it playing in my head and the video vixens dancing around in the airline crew uniform. The beat has a Benga feel to it and makes you want to pull out your orutu and belt out an Okach Biggie tune (No, this is not Biggie Smallz). As a Luo artist, if you don’t mention one or two prominent people on your track, you have not made a worthy track.
Personally, this is one track I will play again and tell all the lando nyiris (Lightskin ladies) my bank hasn’t tuch’d yet but I’m working on it. The good thing about music is that you don’t necessarily have to speak a specific language to enjoy it. This track is my Christmas gift to your Luo boyfriend, girlfriend, wife, husband, crush and any other title you feel should be accorded to another human being. Just don’t play it to your grandma because you’ll end up settling every bill in the village.
They make it, I rate it.