In Conversation with: Shukid

Shukid is an urban rapper representing Nairobi, Kenya. The name Shukid came from the word Shujaa, which is word meaning “brave” in Swahili.

How did you get into music?

I’m the last born of 5 siblings who love music, so I was influenced by what I heard them listening to. As a person that had to move around a lot, music was the one thing I felt never changed. It was the same wherever I went, and I got my comfort in it.

Where does the inspiration for your songs come from?

My music comes from what I’ve seen or had to deal with. I also talk about what I want to be or where I’d like to be in life. It’s mostly motivational, trying to get my brothers to level up.

How did you get into acting and what can people see you in so far?

Always had a thing for acting. In school I had a drama class, and when I got back to Kenya I even took part in the drama festivals. So far, I’ve played the lead in “The Yard” that is set to air anytime soon.

What else do you do apart from being an artist and actor?

My everyday job is being a voice actor. My life is pretty surrounded by art and in and out of studios.

What have been the highs and lows of your career so far?

Coming up as a rapper in Kenya, an English rapper for that matter wasn’t the easiest experience. Fitting in and standing out at the same time, hoping to get accepted. Over time though there have been opportunities that I landed and feel glad to have been a part of. For example, performing at the Africa Nouveau festival in February 2018 & The Terminal Music Weekend in August 2018 are my greatest moments. I also got to host my own event after the release of my 10th project “Shukid Season” last August.

Where has been your favourite place to perform?

Anywhere I get to perform alongside a band has to be my favorite experience so far and I did that for the above-mentioned festivals.

Who has been your favourite artist to collaborate with?

Working with Muthoni Drummer Queen has to be up there because of the whole experience. From receiving the song, to the video. It felt like a level up just from operations. I always love collaborating with my long-term friends and label mates Shatzy K & Kevin Grands because we’re absolutely free with each other and the creativity just goes through the roof whenever we get together in the studio.

What do you hope people will get from listening to your music?

I hope they stay motivated. Especially the younger generation. Some of us grew up feeling neglected and ignored, which does have a long time effect on one’s productivity. I want the next generation to not be afraid of being who they are and not feel less worthy because of societal standards.

Which artists inspire you the most?

Nas, Wale.

What are you currently working on?

My latest project “Shukid Season” which is currently available on Boomplay Music. Working on a few visuals for records off the project, and a few more singles. I’m looking at the reception I’m receiving.

What is the one thing that you can’t live without?

Food. Then music.

What is the soundtrack to your life?

January 28th – Cole.

What are you most proud of about being Kenyan?

Just the fact that I’m Kenyan and I belong. Our athletes do us very proud whenever we see them emerge winners and break records in world competitions. Our leaders on the other hand don’t leave us much to be proud of.

How would you like to be remembered?

I hope to open opportunities for people through music. I would like to be remembered as someone that opened a door for you.  

What advice do you have for aspiring artists/actors?

Keep going till you get where you aspire to. We’re all soldiers of the same struggle.

Social media handles/music/ acting links

Facebook – Shukid

Twitter – @kingshukid254

Instagram – kingshukid

Youtube – Shukid

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