Defunct musical group Sailors is the godfather of Gengetone music in Nairobi, Kenya. It is through them that they re-invented entertaining young people with customized messages. It is one of the genres that broke ranks pretty fast to become the mainstay for millennials across the country.
A quintet (five members) form the biography of the group. They include the following.
1. Lexxy Yung
2. Peter Miracle Baby
These young minds birthed the Gengetone genre, which surprised the Kenyan music industry. Genge style is a type of hip hop with added dancehall musical influences whose inception draws back to Nairobi. The genre’s name is in Kenyan slang/sheng meaning many people. The songs’ lyrics in this genre are also in sheng. Producer Clemo introduced the production of Genge music, but it was popularised by veteran Kenyan rappers Jua Cali and Nonini, who began their careers with Calif Records.
While Nonini and his troop did the Genge-styled music in the early 2000s, they stopped at some point and went mute. In 2018, the Miracle Baby-led boy band under Ethic Entertainment based in the Umoja area released their debut single, "Lamba Lolo”. This single clocked over four million views on YouTube in just a few weeks. It motivated other musical artists groups such as Boondocks Gang, Wakali Wao, Ochungulo Family, Rico Gang and Wakadinali, among others to make music.
In 2019, the Nairobi, now defunct Sailors Gang group gained popularity with their top-charting song Wamlambez. This record became an anthem. Most public service vehicles plying routes within Nairobi city would play this song blaring and unapologetically. Besides a new and different sound, the lyrics were subtle and witty and tackled a sensitive, romantic moment which appealed to young men and women going through life.
Most Genge songs typically adopt a storytelling pattern where the primary vocalist is reliving or sharing an event they experienced with their friends. If you listen keenly, you also get the lesson the event has taught them. These creatives mostly discuss their problems in the ghetto, where life is survival of the fittest.
Although not always, these activities frequently centre on adult pleasure activities, marijuana, women, crime and the beauty of life in general.
Since Wamlambez brought Sailors to public attention, they released other big tunes, such as Pekejeng, that served as the headlining act for significant events. With their fame across the country, the quintet realized there was a gap in their seemingly flawless career. They did not have a manager and couldn’t handle booking shows and much other entertainment-related stuff. So, they hired radio personality Mwalimu Rachel, a drive show presenter with NRG Radio. She took on the role via her MRX Med company, but it would end in premium tears.
Gifted with a charismatic voice and interpersonal relations, the media queen uploaded Wamlambez on her YouTube channel with supposed consent from Sailors. Then a new hit, it quickly clocked millions of streams. Their relationship officially began at this point, and subsequent singles like Pekejeng and Wainame were also shared on Rachel's channel. However, this fuelled rumours of their music's purported exploitation and monetization, and Mwalimu Rachel came under fire from several Kenyans as a result. However, both sides affirmed that their relations were cordial and later debuted all of their other latest songs on the group's Sailors YouTube channel.
As it were, a disagreement ensued between the group and their manager following an assault incident which she was charged for. In 2020, they acrimoniously parted ways with Rachel, which escalated to an ongoing court case. The five members said they resorted to legal recourse after she [Rachel] refused to give share with them the password to their monetized YouTube channel. She argued that she would not release the particulars of this account which Sailors already had millions of views in, until she was fully compensated. Even worse, internal disagreements within the group led to its dissolution.
Sailors Popular Songs
2. Feels So Good
5. Jesu Ni Mwathani
7. Queen B
8. Ni Tekenye
9. Kulewa Kuchuchuma
10. Uwezi tu Do
At Mdundo.com, all of Sailor’s music is available online and in mp3 format. You can also download it and listen at a time of your convenience.