Vision Group, in association with Twaweza Initiative and Buzz Events, is seeking to recognise artistes whose compositions advance society. Today, Gloria Nakajubi brings you Richard Kaweesa a young upcoming musician who drew his inspiration to sing from the injustices in the society
Aged 22, Richard Kaweesa, that affect him. Ebiro Byaffe, My Words 2013. most of the ills in society. “the poor and the weak,” have?” corruption, which are all rooted in the fact that people no longer care about others, not even their country. “If we love one another, I see no reason for one to use money meant for the general public for selfi sh interests,” he notes. He adds that this song is a prayer seeking God’s intervention to change the current state of the country. As it turns out, those who are supposed to do something don’t seem to care.
Kaweesa also notes that if each one of us could do a thorough soulsearching to fi nd out their purpose in life and work towards achieving that, then the world would be a better place.
Who is Kaweesa
Richard Kaweesa was born in 1991 in Namasuba, Entebbe, to Pastor Stephen and Sarah Kaweesa of Uganda Christian Outreach Ministries. He went to Kabojja Junior School He went to for his primary education and then Seroma Christian High School for O’level. Thereafter he joined Kawombe Memorial for his A’level. He is currently studying music at the African Institute of Music in Muyenga.
Kaweesa says he was inspired to sing by his elder brother, Philip Kaweesa, also an artiste. With 14 songs on his album, Kaweesa says most of his music is inspired by his own experiences and those of others around him. “I happen to always go with my father for different outreach ministries out of town, in some remote villages. commonly known as Richy stands out not because he has released many songs, but because of the inspiration that people draw from his music and how he boldly talks about issues
He was nominated for his song, which means (our times) a song off his first album that was released in June In this song, he highlights issues such as selfi shness, a vice typical in this generation, the root cause of We have become so diffi cult, is it because of the conditions or it’s just the times? We no longer care about ,” are some of the words in one of the stanzas, he goes on to ask such questions as, “when was the last time you cared for someone next to you or when did you last care for someone who doesn’t Kaweesa says he was inspired to sing this song because of the ills in the country such as land grabbing, This has given me the feel of what the common person goes through,” he says.
He adds that those are some of the experiences that make him look forward to another day so that he can impact someone’s life through his music. “Being a Christian, I believe in the greatest commandment, which is love, because I know with love the world can be changed even with the smallest of resources,” he explains. Kaweesa was also among the several artistes that sang the offi cial Jubilee song Yoga,Yoga.
Power of music
According to Kaweesa, if music is to change the society then the artistes have to change the content in their music. “Artistes should desist from the pressure of having just a hit song, but if its going to be a hit let it be a highlight of what is affecting the people as they will easily relate to it and not just dance it away for a few months,” he says. He, however, adds that people too need to learn to appreciate positive music because this will inspire artistes to do more of such songs.
What others says about Kaweesa’s music
Ronald Sserwanga, a university student, says when he heard this song playing the fi rst time, he thought it was some veteran artiste tired of life’s challenges until recently when he found out it was a young man. He has, however, listened to it over and over again and, as he says, his life has not remained the same. His prayer as he explains is to learn how to love others.
Juliet Namusoke, a retired teacher, says she used to think all young boys sing useless songs until one of her sons told her to listen to Kaweesa’s songs. “I fi rst hesitated because I had to listen through headphones since the song was on his phone, but you know boys, he had his way and I eventually accepted. But, listening to that song gave me confidence that there are still artistes in this country with a passion to infl uence positive change.
INSPIRED BY KAWEESA’S SONGS
Baker Mubiru ,I love the groove because this is what attracts me to listen to the message in Kaweesa’s music. It is very inspiring
Stanley Mukasa, The song Ebiro Byaffe has a prophetic message and what we want as a country, is to be united.
Salim Nasaga, I find the song Ebiro Byaffe relevant to our current situation because this is what we have become. So someone needs to get back to the basics of togetherness.
Write to firstname.lastname@example.org You can also nominate via SMS type MUSIC (leave space) name of artiste (space) song and send to 8338. Alternatively, write to the Features Editor, P.O. Box 9815, Kampala or drop your nominations at any of the Vision Group bureau offices countrywide. Nominations close on January 15, 2014
To qualify for nomination, the musician should meet the following requirements;
❑ Be Ugandan
❑ The composition must be original and not pirated
❑ Have innovatively used their musical composition to convey deliberate messages advocating for positive change
❑ Have used their music to mobilise the masses to demand for accountability or for a community cause.
❑ Used their music to highlight societal ills like corruption, poor governance, poor service delivery, oppression and human rights abuses