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Respect the OG

By Alfayo Onyango | October 30th 2020 at 08:00:00 GMT +0300

Khaligraph Jones Photo. [Courtesy]

THE OG Khaligraph Jones still has unfinished business and maintains WHY WE MUST TRUST THE PROCESS in his first post BET Hip Hop nomination interview. ALFAYO ONYANGO writes

“When I was first nominated for Sound City, I did not win. I just went for the event and that was enough. You don’t always have to be victorious, but rather focus on pushing till you get there.” Says the rapper from Kayole.

He has never apologized for who he is and despite coming short to UK rapper Stormzy in the BET, he is adamant the best is yet to come:

“In my last song, I did indicate that we should trust the process. We know the milestones we are making and our conversations should be progressive and not with a hate tone of why one did not win. To be honest with you, this year, I was not ready to take that victory.”

As much as he didn’t get to clinch the bling, the nomination still grants him reasons to celebrate and stay persistent:

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“The nomination provides me with new platforms and network. A BET nomination by itself is enough to open doors for you. From it, I have already gotten a booking for a major concert in Las Vegas next year where Wizkid will also be performing. See, it is even good that Covid-19 was here and I did not have to go to the States to attend. I hope to be there next year in person and show my presence.

The Hao artist is a team player and says a win for one is a win for all of Kenya’s industry:

“When one of us receives such a big recognition it is a good thing for all us. We are putting Africa on the map and honestly, it is a win for all of us not just Khaligraph Jones. It is good for everyone to know how this industry works.

Kenyan hip hop king Brian Robert Ouko alias Khaligraph, has said despite not winning the Best International Flow award during this year’s annual BET Hip-Hop awards, his nomination was a big win for Kenya and Africa.

“When we are nominated for such international awards, it means our music in Kenya and Africa is being appreciated worldwide. This recognition is key as it puts us on the world map and on the same pedestal with other artistes from across the globe. This is what creates opportunities and opens our industry beyond the local space,” Khaligraph told The Pulse.

“This is why I said getting nominated was good enough for now. Slowly, our music is opening doors in high places. Being placed in such spaces where we are mentioned around other big music players who control the international music economy should tell you something about where we are headed. This is respect,” he added.

Khaligraph congratulated Britain’s Stormzy (below) who scooped the award during this year’s annual BET Hip-Hop awards ceremony on Tuesday night.

“Congratulations Stormzy. This year we were satisfied with the recognition and the nomination. Now it’s time to put in work for next time. The OG shall be respected. Trust the process,” Khaligraph wrote on Instagram, responding to the win.

Stormzy, whose real name is Michael Omari Owuo, beat Khaligraph alongside five other nominees - Meryl (France), Kaaris (France), Nasty C (South Africa), Ms Banks (UK) and Djonga (Brazil) to carry the day during the virtual ceremony. Stormzy is known for his popular hits such as Shut Up, Vossi Bop and Heavy is the Head.

Similar to AFRIMMA in 2017 and 18’ Best Rap Acts, the OG was satisfied with a nomination before eventually ending up after a victor the following year.

American rapper, singer and songwriter Megan Thee Stallion was the big winner of the night after collecting awards in three categories. Coming at the back of her latest big releases Don’t Stop and B.I.T.C.H, the star took home the Hip-Hop Artist of the Year, Best Collaboration and Hustler of the Year awards.

Rapper Da Baby made history nominated for 12 awards and not even scooping one.

Now on its 15th year, the annual awards saw Future’s (featuring Drake) Life is Good single win the Best Hip-Hop Video, The Box by Roddy Ricch take Song of the Year, Roddy Ricch’s Please Excuse Me For Being Antisocial pick Hip-Hop Album of the Year and Chris Brown and Young Thug Best Duo/Group. Pop Smoke was awarded the Best New Hip Hop Artist, Travis Scott (Best Live Performer) and Rapsody the Lyricist of the Year.

Khaligraph's new release Ni Kubaya (featuring Breeder LW) is one of the biggest songs enjoying rotation play right now.

Carrying the country’s musical hope in this year’s BET Hip-hop awards, Kenyan rapper Khaligraph Jones was the focus of all across the region as the awards took place in America earlier in the week.

With bated breath, Kenyans hoped to write history with their trusted hip hop king, the OG, the man who currently holds the hip hop mantle in Africa – after he was crowned Africa’s Best Hip-hop act at Sound City MVP Awards in Lagos, Nigeria, in January this year. Besides, Khaligraph had exuded optimism that he was well placed to carry the day, scooping the Best International Flow award, in which he had been pitted against Meryl (France), Kaaris (France), Nasty C (South Africa), Stormzy (UK), Ms Banks (UK) and Djonga (Brazil).

But the hip hop big night went to Stormzy, the multiple-award-winning British rapper behind hits such as Shut Up, Vossi Bop and Heavy is the Head.

“Congratulations Stormzy. This year we were satisfied with the recognition and the nomination. Now it’s time to put in work for next time. The OG shall be respected…Trust the process,” Khaligraph updated on Instagram, responding to the win.

Kenyans went on to applaud the rapper with some challenging him to aim at the Grammys. “After BET now nomination ya Grammy ikam through…Kenyan music to the world. OG must be respected,” wrote @hamisi.the_last.

American rapper, singer and songwriter Megan Thee Stallion was the big winner of the night as she went ahead to collect awards in three categories. Coming at the back of her latest big releases Don’t Stop and B.I.T.C.H, the star took home the Hip-hop Artist of the Year, Best Collaboration and Hustler of the Year Awards.


Kenyan Hip-hop Kaligraph Jones OG Stormzy
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