Visually impaired Kenyans who win our hearts with their music

More and more visually impaired Kenyans are venturing into music, sports and other careers. and proving disability is not inability.

Here is the list.

  1. Crystal Asige

Crystal is among Kenyans who have overcome their impairment to make their dreams come true.

Crystal who lost her sight due to Glaucoma was recently featured in Sauti Sol’s new jam ‘Extravaganza’ and Kenyans are impressed.

Crystal Asige

Other songs she has done include the State of Love.

Exclusive: Reuben Kigame narrates how he found love again after an accident claimed his first wife

2. Reuben Kigame

Reuben who is a celebrated gospel artiste in Kenya turned blind at age 3.

He is known for songs such as Enda Nasi, Huniachi, Sina Mungu Mwingine among others.

Speaking about it in a past interview he says,

I remember one evening after mum blessed our dinner at home I reached out for the plate and missed it.

This shocked me and everyone who was present at the dinner table. 

Reuben Kigame

Watch his music video below

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jnql8PYbbv4

3. Henry Wanyoike

Henry who is a celebrated Paralympic athlete lost his sight more 24 years ago after a stroke.

Speaking about his experience in a past interview Henry says,

When I lost my sight in 1995,I was so dissappointed and I thought I would never happen.

The celebrated Paralympic runs the Henry Wanyoike Foundation which aims at improving the lives of people living with visual impairment.

Henry Wanyoike

 

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4. Mary Atieno Ominde

Mary is among the pioneers of Kenya’s gospel music. She is known for songs as Adamu na Eva and Sodom na Gomora, among others.

Speaking about how she lost her sight with a past interview with the Standard, Mary says,

When I was born at first everything about me seemed normal.My parents had no idea what would befall me in the few months to come.


Mary AtienoMary Atieno

Adding that,

It was not until I was five months that they realized I was blind.Like many parents concerned parents they did their best to ensure that I would be able to see again by taking me to various medical institutions.

This include the then famous King George V1  hospital now Kenyatta National Hospital in vain. 

5. Denno

Dennis Kariuki famously known as Denno became a sensation after collaborating with Daddy Owen to create the song ‘Mbona’.

Dennis Kariuki alias Denno

Denno who is visually impaired has gone ahead to sing alongside Bahati.

 

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Reuben Kigame narrates challenges of succeeding in Kenya as a blind man

Rueben Kigame is a celebrated gospel artist and apart from his uplifting music, his hard work and dedication towards the industry cannot go unnoticed.

Despite being blind, Kigame has not let anything stop him from achieving what he puts his mind to and he has proven that with a musical career that spans over 32 years.

Some of his popular songs include, bwana ni mchungaji wangu, enda nasi and huniachi.

Despite his success, Kigame has been through a lot in his life as a person living with disability. In a long post seen by Classic105.com, the artist wighed on the challenges he has had to endure in order to make it as a blind man in Kenya.

Kigame narrates how he applied a job back in 1987 only to be turned down because he was blind.

He also goes ahead to narrate one incidence where he went to shop for wedding rings only to be treated unfairly by the jeweler, with the notion that he could not afford a decent wedding ring, only for him to walk away with the most expensive rings at the shop.

Read his conversation with the jeweler in part,

I insisted, “Do you have any others?”

“Yes, but they are quite expensive, like diamond, gold, mixed, pure, many, many, many.” He walked away again.

“I want a pure gold ring,” I said.

He was quiet. I repeated myself. He then just said, “They are very expensive.”

To cut the story short. I ended up buying the most expensive rings he had left and I could hear that I was the talk of the street as I left, shocked. 

 

If that’s not enough, Kigame highlights the struggles he faces when dealing with churches. He says there was a time he was booked to perform in a church concert alongside Tanzanian musicians.

What is absurd is the fact that the said church was willing to pay Tanzanian musicians over Sh200,000 but pay him a mere Sh20,000 as fuel money to and from Eldoret. Mind you he went to minister with a team of 25 to 30 people.

Perhaps the saddest of all my struggles as a blind man in Kenya is with the Church. He says.

I know churches in Nairobi by name that are prepared to pay Tanzanian musicians kshs200,000 or kshs300,000 for a concert, and the musicians will come and sing over a Cd, merely showing their faces, but when I come to minister with a team of 25 or 30 people, I am given twenty thousand Kenya shillings for my fuel to and from Eldoret and for the transportation of the rest of the team.

 

 

Kigame goes on to open up how he has been swindled money by various people in the country who go on to ‘wallow in untold riches’ as he struggles just to raise enough to go to school.

 

Buried in thoughts, the artist goes on to state that he has been tempted to leave Kenya for those who deserve it more than him. He pledges with people who has made his life a living hell to not do it to others who are living with any disability.

One day, most of these who avoid me now, will hear I have died. Then they will rush to form WhatsApp groups to raise money for themselves, say I used to write good songs or even buy me a nice coffin that looks good on cameras so that it can be said they honoured me and gave me a good send-off. If I do go before any of you, please save your monies. There will be plenty to eat from my music and books, anyway, after I am gone with nobody to stop you.

 

Kenya’s top 10 best dressed male gospel musicians

The Kenyan gospel industry has of late been hit by an endless number of scandals. From sexual scandals to money related issues, the artists seem to always find themselves on the wrong side of the headlines.

However, we give a blind eye on that and focus on their wardrobe.

Most of these artists are smartly dressed and they make a point of being more than presentable. Some may argue that it is a money factor but honestly, without a great fashion sense no money can save that.

So we take a look at some of Kenya’s best dressed gospel artists.

Eko Dydda

eko eko 1

Bahati

 

Bahati
Bahati

Diana Marua na Bahati

Guardian angel

guardian angel
guardian angel

guardianangel160115

Willy paul

Willy Paul
Willy Paul

willypaulnewlook willypaulstunners

Daddy Owen

daddy owen

daddy owen daddy owen 1

Dj Mo

dj-mo djmoh

Moji short baba

short

short.1

 

Reuben Kigame

Reuben Kigame

Reuben.Kigame

Hope Kid

Hope KidHope Kid 1

Photo Credits: courtesy/google

Apart from losing his sight aged 3 here are things to know about Kigame

Reuben Kigame has been in the gospel industry for a few decades but not much is known about the man considered the God father of gospel music.

Here are things you did not know about him

1.Author

He is an author who already has two books to his name.The books are ‘Christian Apologetics Through African Eyes’ and  ‘The Raw Reflections’.

2.He is 52 years old

3.He loves Legumes ,greens and fruits,He hates red meat  and opts for white meat.

4.He is married to Julie and  has 4 kids 3 girls and 1 boy.

5.His first wife died in a road accident,she was from Kirinyaga County.

Exclusive: Reuben Kigame narrates how he found love again after an accident claimed his first wife

6.He turned blind at age 3 .

Speaking about it in a past interview he says

 “I remember one evening after mum blessed our dinner at home, I reached out for the plate and missed it. This shocked me and everyone who was present at the dinner table,” 

7.He was born in Bunyore but grew up in Kisumu.

8.He was a teacher in Mary Hill ,Kiambu.

9.His second wife is Lyhya but brought up in Nairobi

10.Got saved in High school-

11.His hobbies include travelling and  drinking brewed coffee

12.He was in Super Ignitous band

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