It took me exactly 27:19 minutes just staring at my keyboard since I couldn’t come up with an interesting way to start this article. While brainstorming about it, I was feeding my soul some rich music. Honestly, I think the music was just too awesome for my brain to drift and think about other irrelevant matters like starting an article. Plus I can’t multitask, men don’t right? And with that, I had started the Article 😀 (pats myself on the back)
Anyway, forget about what you’ve just read above, here is what you should read. Bewared, this will be long, no, it will be tall, like the guy I’m about to present to y’all. I never dreamt that I could be in Gambia but thanks to music, I was recently there. To start with, it’s called The Gambia, remember to put that ‘The’ first, okay? I have never heard of any music from The Gambia before, let me not lie. In fact the closet I have come to is listening to Zambia 🙂 But then again, G and Z are letters apart, aye? However, after this article, I’m so certain that Rap Mbalax and Afromanding will be part of my daily dosage of therapy. It would take a whole semester plus tuition classes to teach y’all ‘Introduction to Gam-Rap’, but cool kids have low concentration and I charge heavily for my tuition. In that connection, I will let y’all learn through first hand experience by listening to what has been hidden from us for such along time.
There is no better way to sample a societies culture than listening to their music. Being the generous folks we are, we have already separated the chaff from the treasure so that you have an easy listening and therefore, wonderful introductory class. After listening to a couple of Gam-rappers, I settled on Gee for a couple of reasons which I will or will not highlight below. And no it’s not because his name is Gee for Gambia, remember that ‘the’ we talked about earlier? No you don’t. Nothing screams courage to me than the ability to experiment with things out of your comfort zone. In this case, genres. That so far has been the downfall of many great artists who are so confined within their comfort zones that they lose relevancy so quick. Gee is not, Google search Rap Mbalax and see the name that pops up first! From what I gather, Gee founded the rap-mbalax sub-genre, which has rapidly spread to the whole of Gambia, making leads into the neighboring Senegal. By far, this is the richest form of rap that i have heard. The beats are made by fusing African musical instruments urban hip hop cords and a hip hop rap flow.
This is easily detectable from the word go as you listen to the beautifully done single, Dam Kor Nub off his That feeling Album. Gee is simply a genius. How you blend up this instruments with rap and still manage to make it sound cool is beyond my imagination. Honestly, I feel this is the best form of African hip hop that can easily stand out in the world if we are to hold our own. The music is rich, easy to listen even. At first, I must admit it sounds strange but that’s only if all the music you ever listen to are computer generated. Africa deserves better and Gee is best. Sampling through his catalog, which was actually uploaded online by a fan, you will be treated to a variety of themes ranging from love, life to the normal hustles of an artist working against huddles to reach his dream.There is gem of a love song, in fact two, Without You and Sweet Love. The artists he collaborates with also help to compliment the diversity of his music, as a result harmonizing the whole song to create a masterpiece. One such act is Jali Madi who is arguably the best vocalist out of The Gambia and possibly in the top ten continent-wise.
Maybe you are wondering the producer behind all this magic. Well, it’s really humbling to know that Hak, Bilal, Gee and the whole team actually work against all odds to create a music industry that was literally never there. From what I found out earlier about Sunland Music, its the passion for music that keeps this talented team going, hoping against hope that someday, maybe Africa, or even the whole world will come to appreciate their work and dedication.Nothing goes unrewarded, just like we bumped into Rap-mbalax and appreciated its uniqueness, so will the whole world discover this gem.
Gee is a focused artist, from what I was able to dig about him. Apart from being a diehard Manchester United fan, everything else about him is really great, height included 🙂 Under the able hands of Xmyls, we may be looking at the next African break out act. Knowing that the difference between here and there is t, for time, it’s safe to say that Gee is definitely getting there. All we have to do is listen, share and spread the word to people who love good music. Request for his music on the African Music TV channels and most importantly purchase his albums on iTunes.
I’ve always maintained that its the West who ape Africans and if you think I’m wrong, then just watch the video to Gee’s single Bul Falleh Nyee, you will know where Miley Cyrus aped how to twerk! (at 3:51)
Connect with Gee on his Online platforms to get first hand details on what the Rap Mbalax creator is up to.