The Saturday night heavy downpour did not deter hundreds of revellers from attending the Sauti Sol show at Expo Grounds in Gikondo.
The show, which was part of the band’s Live and Die in Africa tour lived up to its billing as the Kenyan afro-pop four man band proved that East Africa has what it takes to conquer the music industry on the continent.
The group held a historic show that left many music lovers in Rwanda content. When the Nairobi-based music group took to the stage at 10pm, what could be heard from the audience were screams and cheers that lasted for minutes.
The four, Bien-Aimé Baraza, Willis Austin Chimano, Polycarp Otieno and Savara Mudigi, kicked off with Live and Die in Africa, a familiar song that every reveller sung and danced along.
"How are you Kigali? Thank you so much for turning up and for being patient. We have been planning to perform for you so many times and postponed the show, but the time is now," the band’s front man Baraza said before delivering an hour long performance.
The group, clad in black vests, tattered jeans and camouflage jackets which they said were from Rwandan fashion house, Haute Baso, started off with some of their old songs including Still The One and Soma Kijana which they dedicated to everyone who believes education can change the African child.
Revellers used their phones to take videos and photos which they shared on their social media platforms.
The group’s lead vocalist Baraza joined the audience as they performed their hit Isabella, and the crowd got crazy as many struggled to capture selfies.
With their strong vocals and energetic dance moves, the group powered through some of their hit songs including Sura Yako, Nishike, Unconditionally Bae and others, which got the crowd excited.
They also performed their latest song Kuliko Jana which they featured RedFourth Choir and It's Okay before they performed the much loved Nerea. At the mention of President Paul Kagame, the crowd got ecstatic.
The boys also took time off the music to talk about the progress Rwanda has made over the last two decades, noting that every time they come around, they see great changes, which they attributed to good leadership. They also highlighted the cleanliness of Kigali City.
Before they wrapped up their show, they invited students of Nyundo Music School on the stage, after they had picked them among their fans who shared videos singing Sauti Sol songs on social media.
The group recognized the talent of the Nyundo students, who they said will go a long way and achieve even bigger things than themselves. The students performed an impressive cameo of Shake Yo Bam Bam.
Sauti Sol then concluded their performance with the catchy song Shake Yo Bam Bam.
“Sauti Sol is a crowd-puller. I managed to follow what they do and I can say they got love for music and particularly for the African continent. They do what they do with passion,” said Jennifer Umutesi, one of the revellers.
Prior to Sauti Sol’s performance, several curtain raisers set the ball rolling, with fast rising star Yvan Buravan setting the mood with an ecstatic performance. The Malaika singer was joined by Uncle Austin to sing their hit, Urwo Ngukunda.
Also to perform was Three Hills of VimbaVimba fame and Neptunez Band. The show was hosted by comedian Arthur Nkusi.