Coming hot on Camp Mulla’s heels, meet Nairobi’s new hip-hop group, Hype Back, writes SHIRLEY GENGA
The music video for your single 21st Century Girl is creating a lot of buzz. What do you have to say about people who think you guys are copying Camp Mulla’s swag?
Hype Back: We are not trying to be like Camp Mulla. We just happen to do the same kind of music. Even though we do urban hip-hop like they do, we try to be more Kenyan when it comes to our beats and lyrics.
|Hip hop crew, Pulse reloaded|
When did you form Hype Back?
HB: We formed the group last year. Originally, the group was called Demigods. It was made up of Marcus Garvey Kariuki (19) and Raul Mendez (18). Later on, Lenny Gatei (20) and Wilson Odhiambo (18) joined, and then Fred Muthaiga (19) joined earlier this year. We then decided to change our name to Hype Pack.
What was the first song you released and how was the experience?
HP: When we decided to do our first singe last year, we did not realise just how expensive production was. We wanted to do our single at Sub-Saharan studios and it cost Sh15, 000, which is a lot of money, especially since we are all in school. The first song we did was Babe in The Stars.
HP: We knew we wanted to do hip-hop but we wanted to do something that stood out and people could relate to. When we got to the studio and told Big Soul of Sub-Saharan studios about our vision, he advised us to do a hip-hip song with an RnB sound and we ended up with Babe in The Stars, and it was well received.
Which other singles have you produced and can we expect the same hip-hop and Rn’B mash-up like Babe in The Stars?
HP: We do not want to be put in a box. We want our music to constantly, sound fresh and unpredictable and that is why all our songs will not have the same sound. This year, we have released Teenager and 21 Century Girl and though all have a hip-hop theme, they sound very different.
When did you first perform to an audience as a group?