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Kenyan artistes express hope in Talanta Hela during ‘Hustla Village’ festival

It was a quite a spectacle as new voices reverberated during the 2023 WRC Safari Rally after-party dubbed “Hustla Village” in Naivasha at the weekend.

The festival was abuzz with unique performances from the likes of Lucy Empress, Young Pesa and Juss Music to the nostalgic timbre of industry veterans like Abbas Kubaff. A light drizzle only fueled a hypnotic vibe to the youthful horde.

While rapper Khaligraph Jones almost brought the house down with an electrifying performance and Phy set a romantic mood, the vocal prowess of the guest backup band made magic out of Freshly Mwamburi’s evergreen hit Stella during the event that featured a star-studded lineup of artistes.

On the sidelines of their stage performances, several artistes expressed their views on the Talanta Hela initiative which is aimed at monetizing talent. Among them was Silverstone Barz, whose poetic genius in Khali Cartel 3 single catapulted her to the limelight.

“Anytime there is Talanta and Hela in one sentence, you would want to be involved as an artiste. I feel like that the initiative is going in the right direction,” Silverstone Barz said.

Also read: WRC Safari Rally after-party recap: How it went down!

“When you pay creatives, more creativity comes and more creatives are born everyday. Our music craft is our entire hustle since most of us don’t have an actual 9-5 job. If the government is coming in and making this an entire movement, we are on the safer side and super excited as musicians,” she explained.

Similar sentiments were shared by Ssaru, the queen of freestyle rap, who said: “Talanta Hela initiative is proving to be really beneficial and people should not cast aspersions at it without really understanding what it’s geared towards.”

“I might not be that well versed in it’s working, but I think the initiative’s stakeholders should continue aiming bring all creatives on-board and not just focusing on certain artistes who already have knowledge on how to hack the entertainment industry. They should hold forums where all content creators are included and informed about the initiative’s agendas. It would help us understand more since most of us can turn it down without seeing it’s benefits to the youth in the long run,” she explained.

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Angela hitmaker, Boutross Munene said performing at a Talanta Hela event is in itself a great opportunity to all Kenyan artistes.

“Let’s see where we are going to go in terms of talent empowerment under the Talanta Hela. We appreciate everything everyone has done. It’s a great initiative,” he said.

Veryl Mkali Wao, an artiste based in Nakuru and a Tusker Nexters Finalist said: Talanta Hela has started organizing concerts that were not previously there. They are definitely on the right course. I feel like we will grows as artistes if they maintain these events. They should also involve new acts and not just the big shots in the music industry.”

She also said Talanta Hela should seek to nurture and empower underground artistes who are often overlooked.

“Many upcoming musicians have talent but they often end up frustrated and seeking their livelihood in other ventures,” she said.

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