Kennedy a.k.a, Kamana Richard is a 15-year-old upcoming hip-hop artiste, in primary five, based in Kabarole, Gatsibo district; some of his songs are already receiving a lot of air play on local radio stations, Ivan Ngoboka, interviewed him.
When was your first attempt at music?
I started writing lyrics, singing them out, and miming songs of established artists at the age of seven. However my first breakthrough came at the age of 12 , when I participated in a music competition organised by the ministry of health to promote sanitation and cleanliness in the district and emerged best with a prize of Rwf 70,000.
So how did you get some of the radio stations to start playing your music?
While curtain raising for a local singer known as Dani Nanone, in Kabarole, I was spotted by a local entrepreneur called Senga, who linked me to some of the local radio stations and conventional artists later. This is how some songs like; Ahagaragara, umutesi mwiza and A.P.R, got on the airwaves.
Any challenges along the way in your career?
Lack of a promoter is what is hindering my progress, since I can’t stage a launch or concert myself because of in adequate funds .The other obstacle is that my parents are against my choice of music as a career, claiming it’s a profession of “vagabonds”.
So how do you strike a balance between school and music?
I visit recording studios and music concerts on weekends.Weekdays are dedicated to school. Balancing the two is not a challenge.
So what is your last word to fellow teenagers out there?
I urge them to concentrate on their calling, to start paying attention to careers they are most passionate about, other than relying on public expectations and demands.