Qwela Junction featuring Sax aces

#np Gwe wange-K!mera

I must admit I had never heard of this guy. But the minute he performed Slow Down-i couldn’t believe my life. This guy actually reminds me of Mali music but with a better voice-no really he does. The reason you’re a doubting Thomas is because you didnt attend the Jazz it up with Airtel event-Qwela Junction featuring Sax aces

This is all went down at the Kampala Serena Hotel as you are all informed by the posters I never saw till the other day that promise the most-i mean the first faces you see are Isaiah Katumwa and the Legendary Moses Matovu-the freshest 66 year old out there. If that’s not promising the most then I dont know what that is.

I am not going to lie, despite the show starting at 7 20pm,the waiter forgetting the lemons for my Mirinda fruity, the MC’s jokes, the MCs pronunciation of names and his apologies, Joseph Kizito having a girlfriend and playing Rock Paper Scissors for armrests with fellow revellers..this is the first show ive been to where every artist from the curtain raiser to the guy that winds things up,puts up a performance to die for. Qwela band, 5 sax aces, 2 Greats. Amazing amazing amazing.

First we had Kenneth Mugabi-who reminds me of Michael Kiwanuka. Seriously. Plus I know I was dancing when “Naki why don’t you be my lover” was only 2 seconds in. In fact my to do list today had “Download that song today before 5pm” …Unfortunately I can’t find it. I shall not give up…or he could just give me his whatsapp number and make life easy for all of us.

I seriously do not understand the way the rock im under is set up. The second performer, Sam Kimera, a christian boy-yeah I have to emphasize it like every internet page out there-came with the National anthem. I didnt raise arms. I knew we were in for more interesting things. And boy did he bring it. But ive already made enough noise (a Mali music reference is enough noise).

Watching 2 brothers play the saxophone made me realise how many things I have to impose on my kids. That was the loveliest sight. Classic man-Mr. Michael Kitanda who unlike other sax aces, refused to introduce himself must indeed own the healthiest pair of lungs on the planet probably insured at 200 milion dollars. His brother Happy K (modest enough to introduce himself twice) makes it look so easy. Having watched all Asian martial law movies and jumping off stage into the crowd, Happy indeed lived up to his name, putting up a sensational performance of his original compositions. The two brother’s together with the other aces did make it all look easy. Enjoying themselves on stage, playing so effortlessly and bringing us in on all the fun

Did I mention that Joseph Kizito has amazing shoes. Yes he had black suede boots. If a man has nice shoes, he shall not let us know he is taken. That should be a rule. Now I have to live with all the love and joy in my heart hidden in valves and all. Anyway-those things they call miracles. Foolishness aside, anyone who has a Viola cover will always have a special place in the hearts of most Ugandans.Β  Anything that reminds people of Elly Wamala is worth listening to. And Joseph did that with his saxophone with all the love in his heart for music. The crowd of course sang because…who doesnt sing along when Viola plays. Please note that he can also play 2 saxophones at the same time, something he doesnt advise to be done at home-he has every right to brag by the way.


Mo Roots-the lady who almost gave my bestie a heart attack and turned his life around is like the Jessica Pearson of Saxophones. I have to say that when I see women take part in pre dominantly male areas I get so excited. She is the first Ugandan female saxophonist I have seen so im not going to lie and say I didnt stand up to clap for 30 hours for her with half done genuflection for her because she deserves it. Not because she is female…but because she is amazing t what she does.

I first saw Brian Mugenyi at a Motorcare launch of the Nissan Qashqai at Golf Course hotel and I fell in love…with his music that is. But I didnt really follow up as much so I was excited to know he was on the lineup just to hear what he has been working on. Dressed up in the clothes Jesus anticipates to wear for the second coming, this guy brought us folk music we couldn’t afford to stay seated. Kamungolo had us become better folk dancers than we were during interhouse music competitions. The man himself showed us that he could be a trainer at Ndere Centre as a side gig.

Qwela Junction a concept aimed at bringing Ugandan musical talent together to do bigger and better things was the backbone for the show. The band, Qwela that assisted in instrumentals as well as the back up vocals were the glue that put all these pieces of greatness together. The front man, Joel, did an amazing job taking us to Rwanda and back all the way to the Japadhola with his beautiful vocals and guitar accompaniment.Β  He engaged the crowd and madeΒ  we had enough energy left to go till midnight.


Must I really talk about the background? The most impeccable stage set up I have seen in this great country

Moving on,

I don’t think its jazz without Isaiah Katumwa whose saxophone’s looks can be most deceptive. With the smallest of saxophones, the man gave us fire like Nakupenda sana, a song that nearly had some of us on stage like someone’s uncle who really rinsed that 50k, dancing all night. He also availed the necessary props to Moses Matovu who only looks better with age. The initiator of the shuffle and most anticipated performer brought life to the crowd with Sirina-a low tempo classic from Afrigo band. I am still disappointed that Olumbe lwobwavu wasn’t played but there’s always a next time. The aces together with the greats closed the show with Obangaina a song that reminds me of my primary school life, I want to cry sometimes.

And at 11pm, the show ended with a bang….

And fiiiiiinally I got to meet Sam Kimera *fans the general surroundings*


Conclusion: please find the above named artists’ music to know what real music sounds like a.k.a buy some albums, support the arts. I’m sure Silento isnt going anywhere so we can always check his progress later.

Have a fruitful week guys.

Stay gold




2 Comments Add yours

  1. Kenneth Mugabi says:

    Someone recommended that i should visit your blog. And its awesome. Keep doing it. Good job


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