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How Eric Musyoka’s hit sounds ended up in ‘Twende’ animation

Eric Musyoka, the maestro behind some of Kenya’s most iconic musical moments, has woven a rich tapestry of sound in Showmax’s animated series, Twende.

Renowned for his work with artists like Ukoo Flani Mau Mau, P-Unit, Sauti Sol, and for significant contributions to Kenyan films, Musyoka takes on the challenge of creating original music for Twende, Showmax’s groundbreaking 2D animation.

In a recent interview, Musyoka delves into the creative process, the amalgamation of Kenyan music genres, and the intricacies of scoring for the screen.

“Creating something unique is never easy,” Musyoka reflects on the intense experience of crafting original music for Twende. The project demanded immersion in Twende’s world, resulting in a compelling and distinctive sonic backdrop.

Also read: How Lupita helped prepare Junior Nyong’o for Showmax’s animation, “Twende”

The musical landscape of Twende mirrors Kenya’s diverse musical heritage. Musyoka deliberately infused the sounds of rhumba, gengetone, and benga, delivering a musical journey that resonates with Kenyan viewers.

Musyoka collaborated with a team from Decimal Records, where Brian Nadra took the lead vocals, and Konkodi and others provided background vocals. It was a collaborative effort that showcased the synergy within the Kenyan music industry.

The catchy theme song, Twende Pole Pole Pangolin, underwent an evolutionary process with four different versions. Inspired by Swahili pacing, the song’s rhythm and melodies were meticulously refined until the team agreed on the final version.

“The team heard it, tweaked a few things, and it became ‘the one,'” says Musyoka.

Transitioning from music production to scoring for screen projects was a natural evolution for Musyoka.

He highlights the parallel creative processes between crafting music for artists and scoring for visual media.

The most challenging aspect, according to Musyoka, is interpreting the director’s vision, but his extensive experience in both fields allows him to navigate seamlessly.

As a parent, Musyoka finds a unique connection to Twende, especially since his children lent their voices to the soundtrack.

Also read: Kwame Nyong’o shares insights on his animation Series, ‘Twende’

He expresses excitement about the show’s potential impact on young audiences, offering valuable lessons of friendship, sharing, and unity through a refreshing lens on pangolin life.

Twende is not just an animated series; it’s a testament to the harmonious collaboration of Kenya’s music maestro, Eric Musyoka, and a vibrant team, creating a sonic masterpiece that resonates with diverse audiences.

With the first five episodes now streaming on Showmax, Twende invites viewers to embark on a musical adventure like never before.