Renowned Kenyan musician David Mathenge popularly known as Nameless is a professional talented and popular artist with a Degree of Architecture from University of Nairobi. A husband and father of two, Nameless talks about his music, family and future plans.
SDE: Why the stage name, Nameless?
N: It came up may years back when I was still a University student doing night shifts within one of the local banking institutions.
At that point I often listened to radio a lot. So on this particular day, the presenters were sourcing for someone with talent who could sing or rap in order for him or her to land a recording deal with the biggest producer at the time.
Without wasting time I stepped out of the office to make the call – and when the presenters asked me about my name, I realized I did not have one. To make matters worse, I did not want my boss to know that I was doing this during my time of work hence I opted for Nameless which turned out to be quite interesting.
If you must know I ended up winning the competition. And like they say the rest is history.
SDE: What you are working on at the moment?
N: I have decided to concentrate recording a number of my projects at the expense of slightly pushing away the touring mood for a while. Most of which are solo music including collaborations which I don’t like to talk about owing to the fact that in most cases collaborations tend to be a back and forth thing or organic for that matter.
SDE: Your song Lettigo with rapper Nyashinski has been well received.Whose idea was it?
N: I always kept in touch with Nyashinski even while he was away in the US owing to the fact that we have come a long way besides being close friends. During our conversations and sharing of ideas on phone or social media I often made one fact clear to him that his Kenyan fans missed him a lot.
It was during his six week’s stay in Kenya before returning back to the US, that we managed to record and release Letigo.
SDE: You surprised many by switching roles in the song – Letigo- you rapping and Nyashinski singing?
N: It was meant to be a surprise for our fans. But despite this I began as a rapper way back during the days of Megarider. On the other hand, Nyash felt inspired to sing in this particular song.
SDE: Looking at the industry, today, what is your assessment on the current crop of artists?
N: I think that despite some of them having made big moves but there is always room for improvement. As one person who is always in touch with the new generation of musicians I realize that the competition is not only in Kenya but has gone continental.
SDE: How would you compare the local music industry to Tanzanian?
N: Without doubt Tanzanian music industry is way ahead of Kenya- with the likes of Diamond and Ali Kiba pushing the Bongo music to the international world map.
On the other hand, it appears musicians have their times –when things just happen for them at certain point. This has to do with the chemistry between the producers and artists in order for that buzz to happen – which we clearly lack in Kenya.
SDE: You are a man of many faces going by your achievements what is the secret behind your success?
N: Apart from bearing ambition as my middle name, laying down a strategy that works well for me as a husband, father and musician has been the key to my success.