The contemporary Kenyan music scene has drastically shape-shifted over the last few years, evolving into something we really didn't expect it to be. Artistes with fresh, broad ideas are slowly coming up, maintaining a familiar sound but pushing boundaries. Mayonde fits into this mould of musicians out to bring something unique to the table.
A few years ago, Mayonde's sound was soulful. She knew she had been born to serve an audience interested in an alternative sound. There was something innocently powerful about her when she gave us tracks like "Isikuti Love." Her beginnings in music were a clear indication of an artiste who absolutely knew how to use her nostalgic aesthetic to entertain.
Until she featured on the 2017 party anthems "Kama Kawaida" and "Party Nation", nobody really knew this unrestrained side of her. This approach was a reinvention of sorts. She was part of a squad effort that was truly impactful when it came to grabbing the nation's attention.
Mayonde is still an icon in the making and besides that, she can see music in colours. Her latest EP, "Project Purple", is a tremendous and fearless attempt aimed at exhibiting her endless brilliance. Throughout the project, she delivers her reality in her own voice, putting her listeners in a new perceptive about her experience.
Despite not having an extensive catalogue, her star keeps shining. She gives the impression of an artiste out to make good music, rather than one out to gain short-lived fame. Her approach to artistry is quite remarkable, and this can be informed by the kind of work she puts out.
The effort to establish herself as a star is quite noble. She's learned to put her creative needs first, even when she yearns for relevance in the mainstream scene. Her music is likely to take an interesting turn now that she's willing to try out various music genres, depending on what colour she's feeling at a particular moment.