Album Review: Kenyan poet Mufasa’s “Inside out”

“Inside Out” is not just an album, it is the power of writing, it is the power of delivery and it is energy in-form. The album’s theme is testimony to the artist’s development from boyhood dreams of love and lust to the realization of what life is and the challenges of life in Africa a satirical chide on power, politics and a celebration of love.

‘Wildflowers’, the first poem on the 6-track compilation, mirrors the ‘exile’ common folk has been forced into by the leadership. The poem is raw, spilling seeds of despair, change and expressively revolutionary.

“How long will we depend on other people to make the world better place for us? How long will we define ourselves by our tribes and colors and forget that we are limiting the chances out there for our children to be anything they want to be? How long will look up to one person to make a change when we know better change comes faster greater bigger if we look upto each other? We need love, we need to re-evaluate who we are we need to define who we are?

The rhetoric he uses is a call to action, putting leaders on their toes while demanding answers to questions they are afraid of. The poem speaks with the voice of the likes of Martin Luther, Malcolm X, Thomas Sankara and Nelson Mandela. The gifted artist delivery walks parallel to rogue leaders.

‘God Forgive Us’ also picks up that revolutionary theme, targeting the youth, stroking their egos while urging them to do what is just. It reminds them that, they don’t need affirmative action but a force to institute change ‘from youth are the leaders of tomorrow to the youth are leaders of now.’ Most of all, that with an empowered brain, the youth can achieve anything.

His chilling delivery wakes listeners to reality, Mufasa believes that, his poetry is not just for aesthetic purposes but a force to bring about the normal contained in the abnormal. In a world where picking garbage will make you a hero and littering is normal, Mufasa fiery delivery is evident in ‘Mic and Purpose’ he pokes at the scars of Kenya’s 2008 Post-election Violence which, many among his countrymen would want to forget but still embrace tribalism, the very thing that led to violence.

‘Hurt to Heal’ delves deep into matters of religion and love. In this poem, the girl the persona loves is the ideal wife material but chooses to break it all up and follow her religion. The persona is left too surprised to be heartbroken but has to move on. ‘Before my Daughter is Born.’ On the other hand talks about racial discrimination, father daughter relationship, gender inequality and strength of a woman characters which, according to the peom, Mufasa hopes to instill in his daughter.

Mufasa delivers an endearing message to his future wife on ‘My Future Wife’, the piece is filled with color and aims for the heart. It is nostalgic and hopeful at the same time, appositely cheesy and seductive, with a powerful conviction.

Mufasa’s poetry shows a man whose mission is beyond poetry, he uses words for an even higher purpose as a social justice and rights defender; characters that have seen him perform in some of the most reputable venues in different countries.

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