K'NAAN

Troubadour

2009-08-27

K'naan was born in Mogadishu, Somalia and lived there until he was 14, partly during the civil war of the early nineties. He fled with his family and wound up, eventually, in Toronto. He was discovered at the U.N. at a conference by Yossou N'Dour and later emerged with a record contract. His debut CD won Canada's Juno award for best rap record. K'naan's been in some song-skirmishes with other hip-hoppers who have ridiculed his choice of musical topics (often Africa and the have-nots), but the kid doesn't back down. He definitely has something important to say and the talent to bring a strong message. This sampler from "Troubadour" (recorded at Bob Marley's studio in Jamaica) gives you a taste of his approach. The reggae-tinged "Wavin' Flag" has become a bit of an anthem at his concerts. Michael J. 09/09 W-Hip Hop

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