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Redsan: The Music Journey of Kenya’s Dancehall King

Redsan.
Redsan is one of Kenya’s greatest dancehall musicians. Photo/Redsan.

When it comes to the Kenyan music scenes, few are considered legends.

One such character is Swabri Mohammed, popularly known as Redsan.

Redsan is among the people who have been in the industry for decades and released several hit songs.

The artist is one of the people who popularised dance halls in Kenya.

This is his journey as WoK reports.

Background and Education

He was born and raised in Nairobi in areas like Eastlands South B and Majengo.

He attended Nairobi South Academy followed by Parkview Academy.

Redsan is the second last-born in a family of 14 children,13 boys and one girl.

In a past interview with Churchill, he described his family as lively.

His father is a businessman engaged in various businesses including trying his hands in politics.

Redsan’s childhood was comfortable with supportive parents providing them with a good life.

At one point, he was selected to join Harambee Stars but got an injury and failed to advance.

Music Career

The dancehall artist fell in love with music at a young age but it wasn’t until 1998 that several people began to notice him.

He won the star search challenge hosted at Carnivore Discotheque.

When he started, the few stations around were unwilling to play some of the local music and producers were a handful.

He joined Ogopa DJs and released his first album titled Seasons of the San in 2002.

On his second album, he collaborated with Jose Chameleon on the song Bageya.

The second album, Red, with it’s phenomenal songs that Kenyans still love including Chicken, Malaika and Apakatwe.

Redsan released his third album in 2006, which featured hit singles like Kenyan.

People continued to enjoy his music and he would perform in a lot of shows outside the country.

The year 2009, he released the album Versatility and in 2013, his remix of the song Badder Dan Most with Jamaican musician Demarco received massive airplay.

In 2014, the Mikono Juu hitmaker got signed by Sony Global who have continued to manage him for a long time.

This deal saw him work on collaborations with Burna Boy, Patoranking, AKA and Stonebwoy.

In 2018, he released the album, the Baddest

The same year, there were allegations that he slapped a producer after he failed to release all songs as agreed upon.

An audio of a confrontation surfaced online with the two confronting each other but later the producer would say the artist had not paid for all the songs.

 

While he is rarely in the limelight, the singer continued to work on his music, all while keeping his family out of the limelight.

He is not one to share pictures of his children and wife online and also doesn’t believe clout chasing is a proper way to market music.

In 2022, he released the song Uki Catch We Catch which received great reviews.

In the same year, during an interview with Radio Maisha, he alleged that he earns more than $10,000 from his label.

At one point, Redsan established a studio and label called Dutty Sounds which helps nurture talent example the likes of Proff.