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Patriotic songs make a comeback in music gala

By Caroline Chebet | August 6th 2019
Lokichar Girls Primary School perform a Pokemon Folk song during the Kenya Music festivals held at Kabarak High School on August 5, 2019. [Standard]

Teacher Training colleges yesterday battled it out for the best vocals in 'Tushangilie Kenya', one of the country's most famous patriotic songs.

Composed 34 years ago by Thomas Wesonga, the song made a comeback in this year's National Music Festivals at Kabarak University as part of a campaign to nurture patriotic songs.

Embu Teachers Training College emerged the winners with their rendition of the song.

Kaimosi Teachers College emerged second while Togotho TTC and Kitui TTC tied in the third position.

They faced intense competition from Kengenya Teachers Training College, who picked Kitenge shirts go drive their patriotism message home, while Lugari Teachers Training College nearly stole the show with their well-choreographed dancing.

Kitui Teachers College threw in flags to drive the patriotism message home while Kericho West TTC picked school uniforms.

The category attracted 16 entries from several teachers' training colleges.

Wesonga's nostalgia

Mr Wesonga, 65, sat back to enjoy the renditions of the song that he described as "nostalgic."

"It is a pleasure that the song composed 34 years ago is still going strong and bringing together learners from across the country," he said.

He said he wrote the song following the political instability in neighbouring countries.

The song rose to prominence during former President Daniel arap Moi's tenure when it received massive airplay. Six years after the song was released, it had caught the President's year.

The rest is history.

"I have composed over 50 songs in a span over 40 years and they are still relevant. Heko Jamhuri, which was the theme song for Kenya's independence in 1983, made a comeback 50 years later," he said.

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