Our columnist – publicist to the stars Anyiko Owoko, is based in Nairobi Kenya and spends her time mingling with African celebs, if she’s not out and about sampling Kenyan fashion and all the latest in cool East African music. In this issue, she attends an exclusive gourmet secret dinner and the biggest album launch Kenya has seen in recent times. Here’s her hot list this February
Tanzania’s royal couple: Queen of Pop Vanessa Mdee and her other half – R&B singer Juma Jux, were in town this January to launch Vanessa’s debut album: ‘Money Mondays’. The 18-track album features Pan African stars including Mohombi, Cassper Nyovest and Joh Makini. Vanessa’s Nairobi twin events: a press conference and the launch party hosted by Chimano of Sauti Sol, were well-attended by Kenya’s media personalities and celebrities and definitely gave the East African music scene a good shake-up. She is the first Tanzanian act to launch her album in such a swanky way in Nairobi.
At the start of February, I was among a handful of carefully selected guests invited to ‘Secret Eatery’ – a unique dining experience held at a secret location in Nairobi. I’m still not allowed to say where it was, but I can tell you that I can’t remember when I last had a 7-course meal that good! Dishes ranged from a delicious Lemon Sorbet, a Chicken Ballentine, Grilled Chops with Pineapple Salsa and a surprisingly good Courgette Carbonara. To get a chance to attend the next ‘Secret Eatery’ and to unravel who the secret Chef is – check out secreteatery.wordpress.com. You’ll thank me later!
Most Relevant Quote
I was just going through my old interviews and I came across a 2016 audio recording of a conversation I did with Uganda’s famed duo Radio & Weasel. Radio said, “Working with Toofan at Coke Studio made us realise that Ugandan artistes are special! We make news and everybody loves to talk and write about us,” adding, “At the end of the day – I love it! I do it for fun so keep posting Instagram posts and Snapchats of us.” Right now the whole of Africa is taking to social media with messages of condolence after Radio passed away this February 1st., following an accident at an Entebbe club—condolences to all his fans and family.
Favourite Item of the month
I go everywhere with my Waza Wazi Bags—my revolving favourite item of all months! Their Instagram page reads: “We are unapologetic ambassadors of the African reality. Each piece embodies our narrative and we are proud of it. Now shipping stories worldwide.” Waza Wazi bags come in all shapes and sizes. I love their little pouches which I always carry to events. Their big bags fit my laptop, iPad, clothes, shoes and pretty much any other thing. Waza Wazi are the most functional Kenyan bags and they represent my love for heritage and unique talent. Check out the Luoch clutch – my current favourite. Next time you want to buy someone a Kenyan gift – Waza Wazi it is!
I absolutely love the Kenyan-Nigerian YouTube series – “This Is It” created and directed by LowlaDee – (Dolapo Adeleke) and starring celebrated Kenyan actor Nick Mutuma (Tomide) and Nigerian actress Chiagoziem Nwakanma as Dede. The first season of this dramatic romcom miniseries, follows the young, clueless newlyweds Tomide and Dede, while its second season digs deep into life after the honeymoon period focusing on the last six months of their first year in marriage narrating their journey settling into a new life with random unexpected everyday issues. It’s so hilarious and so good for anyone and everyone thinking of moving in with their partner –it’s not always rosy. You will binge-watch this all the way!
Most Kenyan Moment
Terrorism is a subject many shy away from but looks like the topic of an incident that happened in Kenya might grant a new Kenyan film an Oscar. German and Kenyan producers unite in this new Kenyan production “Watu Wote”, inspired by the 2015 terrorist bus attack orchestrated by Al-Shabab militants in Kenya’s Mandera region. The film just got nominated for the 90th Academy Awards taking place on March 4th in Los Angeles, US Award for Best Live Action Short Film. The short film, produced in 2016 as the graduation film for the Hamburg Media School master class program, pays tribute to the 28 people killed in the attack.
In the next issue, I will be talking about Nairobi’s hottest music festivals! Don’t miss!