Its 2010, a friend has convinced me to go to Zone 7 to watch some band, to be honest I felt like I was cheating on Code 9 but I still tagged along very sure I would not like them or whatever they would be covering. Just so you know, that is the year when cover bands started springing all over Kampala like viruses and each one had a gem to show off. I kept wondering what was so special about this one band for my friend to drag me out of my comfortable WiFi filled room in Akamwesi for a late night walk to Zone 7. The place was filled with beautiful sounds, all the instruments and voices seemed to be intertwined and made this sound that made me stop dragging my feet and rush to the sitting area. The audience was screaming and applauding and then they suddenly went silent.
A voice filled the air stirring emotions from my heart, a voice so strong I wanted to see who was singing. WHAT A VOICE!!! Every girl and woman in the place starting sending out a weird scream and I was amused by the way he just kept singing calmly like nothing else mattered except for the music. He went through two songs and a duet with the female vocalists but you could see that he was the gem everyone kept anticipating for. I was in fact taken by his voice and at that time he reminded me of John Legend or because he sung a lot of Mr. Legend’s music, I do not know but I was purely convinced he reminded me of that guy. I never stopped going for their band nights until when I got bored, I do that a lot.
Its 2015, I am late for a meeting at Endiiro Cafe in Kisementi (they have good coffee FYI) and I rush in, hug the guy and say hello to his female companion then we move to another table. Its the 24 year old Abaasa Rwemereza, he is bearded up and more grown than that boy at Zone 7, he has happy eyes and a friendly voice when talking. He just came off of a busy week, his mix tape release at The Sound Cup and singing his hit single “Ntegyerize” at Lilian Mbabazi’s maiden album release at the Serena that had over thousands of people and trust me, he murdered it. Abaasa is in a form now and with his music taking him places, he seems even more grateful for the music and the people that have stood by him and helped him grow the talent that was “Abaasa The Drummer Boy” then transitioned into “Abaasa.”
He is the last born in a family of three children, he attended Kampala Parents School and City Parents for his Primary education, then Makerere College School for his Senior 1 and finally King’s College Buddo for the rest of his High School education. Abaasa didn’t know he could sing all through his childhood and highschool life, but he was good at instruments. He played drums during his senior 2 during confirmation with a number of friends who later went on to be among the founding members of Novell band after they finished high school. Its during his time with Novell that Abaasa found out he could sing, one day their lead singer was not available. He was urged to fill in and Thank God he did because his voice came out with so much beauty that it would be a shame if the world didn’t hear it. After Novell, Abaasa and a couple of others joined The Sundowners, a band that played every Thursday at a bar on acacia avenue with Lillian Mbabazi, it was amazing for him as he doubled at producing his own music. It is during this time that Abaasa grew into the man he is now, it took a process filled with disappointments and career changes with his education but he was ready to do what was good for the future he saw for himself.
Abaasa, is not just a young man who can sing. He is a certified producer, writer and instrumentalist. After all these years, his star is ready to shine and when you hear Abaasa sing, you won’t know what hit you. It is a voice that speaks for the heart, a voice that renders your soul speechless. He says it has not been easy, at all and still is not. We spoke about how hard it is to be an unknown upcoming talent in the music industry where few favor the unknown and yet somehow Abaasa is now a name so many are getting to be familiar with. His song “Ntegyerize” is on the airwaves of every hip radio station in Uganda and he is on fire, with his Rukungiri mixtap on iTunes (please see link below) and him working on his debut album, there’s a lot to expect from Abaasa and a lot he is willing to offer to the world once they sit and listen. Please listen to “Rukungiri” a 7 track mixtape that features The Mith and Patrobas some of the best rappers in Uganda on SoundCloud(link below) and purchase it on iTunes. Support our own. You can also follow Abaasa on Twitter @abaasar.
SoundCloud; https://t.co/ToZ1yJyWxD / iTunes; https://t.co/3Xgm5LTLyG