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EXCLUSIVE: Harry Richie on his Vaida song ‘uniting’ Raila, Jalango

In a world where musical tastes often part along generational lines, there’s always a song that has shattered the age barrier and set the dance floor ablaze with an electric energy that knows no bounds.

Imagine a track that’s not just a hit but a groove that compels both the young and the young at heart to move to its rhythm.  It isn’t just a chart-topper but an irresistible force that’s created a dance revolution, reminding us that music has the extraordinary power to bridge generations and ignite a fire of euphoria that burns brighter with every beat.

In Kenya, one of those songs is Harry Richie’s vernacular song, Vaida.

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On TikTok alone, hundreds of thousands of videos were published under the hash tags Vaida dance challenge and Vaida Azziad challenge whereby thousands of people copied her dance moves to the song. On YouTube, he garnered 4.6 million views on his page in a span of 11 months since its release- and that is not counting tens of other channels that published his video and amassed their own views as well.

Lately, the song has been gaining prominence again as the Odinga family are often seen dancing to it during various occasions. In December 2022, at Siaya Governor James Orengo’s homecoming, Mama Ida Odinga could be seen enjoying the song she danced at the event with other women.

Fast forward to July 2023, Vaida ‘reunited’ opposition leader Raila Odinga and ‘rebel’ Member of Parliament for Langata Constituency, Phelix ‘Jalango’ Odiwuor. The two have been at loggerheads over Jalango, a member of Raila’s political party, working with President William Ruto contrary to the party’s expectations. It remains unpublicized if the two completely mended fences after the party.

Raila and Jalango were seen wildly enjoying the song as they danced together and surrounded by several other people including younger women at the luxurious birthday party of MP Caleb Amisi’s daughter. Speaking exclusively to Nairobi News earlier today, Harry Richie said he felt so good that it was his song that was played at that moment when someone decided to record the viral clip.

“I felt very good about it. It made me feel very good that it was my song that played at that time and was captured in the video. It challenged me to come up with something equally good,” said Mr Richie.

Mr Richie recently released another Luhya vernacular song, Amapesa (money) which he believes will perform just as well as Vaida.

Globally, based on Vaida ‘bringing’ Raila and Jalango together, Mr Richie hopes that one day, his song would also bring Russia’s President Vladimr Putin and Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy together and end to the war in Ukraine. This war has seen 9,444 civilians killed in Ukraine since it broke out in February, 24, 2022. Millions others escaped to neighboring countries as 13.7 million internally displaced persons were reported to arrive in Poland.

In Kenya, Mr Richie hopes his song can reunite sensational musician Otile Brown and socialite Vera Sidika who broke up in 2018. He said that this break up personally hurt him and did not like that they ended their relationship.