As Ruyonga rapped, giant screens behind him depicted images of children starving, marching. Dying.
The song was dedicated to ‘The Invisible Children’ - the innocent souls caught in the brutal war the Joseph Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army waged in northern Uganda for two decades.
Ruyonga’s Victory Music album launch at Legends bar, Lugogo, over the weekend, was dedicated to more than just having a good time. It was much more than that.
Totally awesome; is the best way to describe it. When I first arrived, I was woefully ignorant of what was in store for me.
‘So, is this like Ruyonga’s first foray into Christian music?’ I asked Samson, my cameraman, who proceeded to stare at me with a deep and singular amazement. He informed me that Ruyonga’s (formerly known as Krooked) first mix-tape was titled ‘God over money’. So no, it wasn’t his first foray into the religious.
I proceeded to the main grounds where the Sulphuric Djs were sufficiently putting it down, until the show kicked off with performances by Benezeri, and Levixione Lala collaborating with J.I. The MC Ronnie Habasa announced that S4J was coming up next.
‘The last time he was on a stage, power went off. But today, he has come with a generator. Give it up for Jaaaayyssusss!’
Anyway, S4J did something that artistes should stop doing; playing a full record in the back with vocals in full throttle, and singing over it to create a mix of confusion of unprofessional proportions. We came to watch you sing, not lip sync!
Next was Richy’s True Love. Hallelujah. Who doesn’t love that track? And finally it was the main man.
He hit the ground running, rapping a long stream of intelligent sounding words indeed. My pen hovered over my notebook, desperate to get a line I could share with you. All I was able to capture were the words ‘Verily, verily, verily’, and ‘Vivified’. He likes the V word, I think.
‘Allow me to be a Christian and swagged up’, he said. So his first song had lady soldiers as back up dancers. Totally cool.
And then magic happened. Maurice Kirya joined Ruyonga on stage for the track Don’t wanna fight. Then they tried to kill us, I think. Because Enygma followed suit. What happened was the creation of an atmosphere charged with electric currents zipping from person to person. The comment of a Twitterer summed it up nicely.
‘’Did you see Maurice Kirya on stage? Followed by Enygma? And this was for 10k? Walayi, Tubabye!’’
J.C Muyonjo and Big Trill also graced the stage with Ruyonga, as well as MoRoots, whose husky sweet voice is surely underrated. An impressed and mystified twitterer asked ‘But where has this chick been?!’
Ruyonga spoke about a time when he wasn’t so successful, when the only vice he didn’t have was the consumption of drugs. He was living a destructive lifestyle until one day, in his words: ‘’I didn’t wanna drink, I didn’t wanna smoke. I was free.’’ He then invited the crowd to give their lives to Jesus and provided spiritual assistance for them to do so after the show.
So Krooked is not crooked anymore. He’s on the straight and narrow path to super stardom, and helping his fans along the way.