THE MOOVE - MY STORY
My name is Vincent. They call me Vinny the Moove. “The moove”, because this is what my last name means in Swahili. I was born in Nairobi and brought up in Langata, and then moved to Kibera with my family when I was about 5 years old. When I was a child, I liked playing and watching football, writing and listening to music.
We had a nice family life with my 4 brothers and sisters, but we faced a lot of challenges when one of my brothers passed away, and then my father followed. What I can say about this is that the experience made me stronger.
Growing up in Kibera is very interesting because you meet a lot of different people: different tribes, different ages, rich, poor, … all things are found here. I really like the place because there are so many experiences you can live.
I discovered I can sing when I was ten years old. At our schools I used to perform to other people. In class eight, I had to concentrate on my studies, so I stopped. When I reached form two, I had forgotten about music. But you know, music doesn’t go away. If you have it in you, it’s there. When I was studying, it just kept showing up. <Write music, write music!>, said the voice inside of me. Something on my mind was telling me that I could do this. I started to follow it and began writing my own songs.
I do music and acting, but for now I’ll focus on music. I write a lot of songs of any kind. I’m not limited to dancehall but this is what I do most. I sing and write. All of the songs I sing I write myself. And if another person requires someone to write a song for him, I’ll do it, too. The people I’ve written for say that they like my unique style of dancehall. There is something called Kapuka here in Kenya. It’s a style of music that is close to dancehall, but it’s not pure dancehall. Personally, I don’t like that. I do pure dancehall music.
The best way to do things: If a person reads a book one time, and then I come and read it five times.. I’ll know better! And that’s what I do with music videos.
What inspires me
Personally, who inspired me the most in my life are my mother and my father. They have given me so much. Not all people are so lucky. For example I’ve got the privilege to go to school.
Musically, there are so many people that have inspired me. The Jamaican artist Chronixx, Gage, Vybz Kartel, Jahmiel, Alkaline. Alkaline is my age mate, so I usually follow him. I follow a lot of people. some of the most important people to me are Jay-Z and Lil Wayne, the American rappers. I’d really like to be at the top, just like them. That’s why I work hard.
You know, life is not fair. People work hard, and still they don’t get what they want. So, what I do is that I work hard and smart at the same time! So when I see people do things in a certain way, I try to do them differently, to be unique. For example the music that people here in Kibera and all over Kenya like is Hip Hop. I don’t do Hip Hop. What I do is Dancehall. Pure Dancehall music! I think most people here don’t understand it because it is originally from Jamaica. I follow the Jamaican culture, their dos and don'ts. That’s my way of working smart.
Life as an artist
An artist explains what he sees. Through my art, I express my feelings.
Challenges as an artist are first of all the financial part. You need to record and to rehearse, and the prices are so high. And then, you also need connections. If you have finance, you can reach the connections.
Sometimes people say you can’t make it. Or they say that being an artist is not good. Artists are always broke, they don’t make money. This bad way of people seeing artists is a challenge. I try to be myself. I do things for myself, and not to impress people.
I told you my parents are my role models. And since my father passed away, what I really want to do is to make it, so that I can buy a very big house for my mother. I want to make sure my family doesn’t suffer. They were there for me when I was struggling, now I want to be there for them.
Artistically, I’d like to reach international level. It would be so good to collaborate with great artists, and to get a chance to travel.
My expectations for the future depend on my hard work and my determination. I know I’ll need to work hard and smart to achieve what I want to achieve. Currently, my expectations are very high. I’m training every day when I wake up. Even when I sleep: sometimes I get an inspiration during the night. Then I wake up and write it down.
A friend introduced me to Kica in 2017. Artists usually get along very easily, so it was not difficult to enter the group. Before, I used to train at home. Now, I can rehearse in the room here with the group and we can correct each other. That’s how we grow. I feel that I have improved through this. And Kica has given me a platform. Recently, I performed at my first big show. I didn’t know I could do it because there were so many people there. But I reached the stage and I did it. I was so proud. Now i feel like I can go to any stage.
I’d like to influence a lot of people. I want to be a good role model. I’d love people to say: “this guy is my role model.”
I focus a lot on the youth. They are the ones that are neglected. I hope my music can be an inspiration for them. Or when I do a party song, at least they can enjoy it.
Through my music, I’d like to share my experience. Growing up in Kibera is not an easy thing. You live so many challenges. It’s a slum. Most young people don’t have jobs. If they can’t pay, they might kill and steal. It’s very challenging. So I hope I can inspire people in a positive way.
My message to the community
Always think positive in any situation.