How do they do it? List of artistes who have remained timeless

Snoop, Jose, Farrell and Sean Paul [Courtesy]

The music industry is ever-evolving.

While the craft has generally remained the same, the infusion of each generation on any genre has never gone unnoticed.

A good example is the ‘Wamlambez’ craze in Kenya, that is propelled by an exuberant teen generation that is slowly but surely defining and dictating the enticement scene.

The old guard is seemingly in a cliff, torn between the urge to grow wings and master the new wind or fade out of the limelight.

Over the years, there have, however, been several artists who have clearly mastered the art of reinvention and stayed relevant generation after generation.

Today we highlight several whose resilience and hard work has put them on the top for years.

  1. Sean Paul

The Jamaican hip hop and dancehall recording artist and producer began his life in Kingston as Sean Paul Francis Henriques.

Born in 1973, he began his music career in 1996 at the age of 23. It was until 2000 when he launched his debut album and the fame, money and everything that comes with it started knocking on his door.

The multi-award-winning artist has since then remained on top of various billboard with hits after hits.

Sean Paul [Photo: Courtesy]

His singles "Get Busy" and "Temperature" topped the charts in the United States, and most of his albums have been nominated for the Grammy's Best Reggae Album, with Dutty Rock winning the award.

Sean Paul has also been featured in many other singles including chart-toppers "Baby Boy" by Beyoncé, "What About Us" by The Saturdays, and "Rockabye" by Clean Bandit.

However, it doesn’t come without challenges. The 46-year-old says a "language barrier" is one of the reasons dancehall artists fail to make it big in the UK and US.

He believes it's hard for some people to understand "hardcore patois" - which is a mixture of several languages, including English, spoken in Jamaica.

  1. Pharrell Williams

It is no brainer to pick this American rapper to feature in this list. I mean, Pharrell has given us hits after hits leave alone his performances on stage.

Born in 1973 in Virginia, Pharrell Williams started performing as a teen. His journey has been that of raising through the ladder thanks to his hard work and a determined soul.

He released his first solo single, "Frontin'", in 2003 and followed up with his debut solo album, In My Mind, in 2006.

Pharrell Williams [Photo: Courtesy]

The 46-year-old released his commercially successful single, "Happy" in 2013, which went on to become the Despicable Me 2 movie soundtrack.

The two-time Academy Award nominee's resoluteness has earned him over 10 Grammy Awards including a 2014 Best Original Song nomination for "Happy."

With his unbeatable song-writing skills, we will definitely continue to hear more hits from Williams.

  1. Jose Chameleone

Closer home, we have the sensational 40-year-old Ugandan singer who has literary given us ‘music from the heart.’

You will agree with me that his lyrics in most of his songs, touch on real-life experiences that we can all relate.

From love songs to heartbreaks and all that, Jose has mastered the skill of crafting his lyrics to ‘speak’ to our souls.

The Afrobeat artiste’s musical career began at a young age in 1996 as a DJ at the Missouri night club in Kampala.

Jose Chameleone [Courtesy]

He was later signed to the Kenyan record label Ogopa DJs, where he broke through with his first single, "Bageya" that featured Kenyan artist Redsan in 2000.

It will go down in history books that In March 2014 at the Lugogo Cricket Oval Stadium in Kampala, Chameleone broke the record for the largest audience of any East African performer, drawing an estimated 40,000 fans to his "Tubonge Live" concert.

Indeed, he remains a sweetheart to many of his fans who seem to never get enough of his music.

  1. Snoop Dogg

Born Cordozar Calvin Broadus Jr. in Long Beach, California, on October 20, 1971, Snoop Dogg is no doubt that he is one of the few American rappers who have evolved with the music industry to bring ‘something’ fresh every time they visit the studios.

His music career began in 1992 when he was discovered by Dr Dre and featured on Dre's solo debut, "Deep Cover", and then on Dre's solo debut album, The Chronic.

Snoop Dogg [Courtesy]

He has since sold over 23 million albums in the United States and 35 million albums worldwide.

His Journey of self-invention took a major turn in 2012, after a trip to Jamaica where Snoop announced a conversion to Rastafarianism and a new alias, Snoop Lion.

As Snoop Lion he released a reggae album, Reincarnated, and a documentary film of the same name, about his Jamaican experience, in early 2013.


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