Last week we had the pleasure of receiving a new single from Kenyan rock artist Kanyeki. “Munene wa Ita” a gospel rock track featuring Skylah Lorenah on vocals was received to much acclaim on radio as well as social media. The song has some impeccable song writing and has won over many fans. Being a rock fan himself, we asked Kanyeki about the bands and records that influenced his style.
He mentions that three bands whose records played a pivotal role. Meeting him at different stages of his life were Christian rock bands Kutless, P.O.Dand Red that all played different but crucial roles in influencing the life and music of Kanyeki.
Initially I was attracted to rock by bands like Creed, Three Day’s Grace and Daughtry – this was in the late 90’s.
Come early and mid 2000, I became adventurous with my listening and came across P.O.D whom impressed me with their hard metal approach, style and also depth in lyrics.Their album Angels and Serpents Dancing stood out with its singles “Addicted” – which expressed my relationship with Jesus Christ as I was coming in real realization with self after great great loss. Then came “I’ll be Ready”, a source of encouragement and motivation. There are times I felt far away from my God and so much pushed to the wall, and songs like Breathe Into me, Lost and Pieces, and Wasting Time by P.O.D, saw me through and influenced my writing.
There are times I felt far away from my God and so much pushed to the wall, and songs like Breathe Into Me, Lost and Pieces, and Wasting Time by P.O.D, saw me through and influenced my writing.
Red also came through as a favorite with their album “End of silence” as it caught me in the process of writing my songs and seeking a platform and production/studio. The interesting way of arrangement and lyricism which cuts across believers and seculars at large also impressed me. Their live performances also struck me and have found myself borrowing from them from time to time.
These two Bands carried me through seasons of heartbreak, abandonment when sick and brokeness when I lost my job. As I grew deeper in my relationship with Christ Jesus and more expressive in my composition, I found myself merging P.O.D’s and Red’s style of musical arrangement and trying to simplify it to suit my approach in arrangement though felt something was missing. This missing puzzle was discovered by Kutless which went further to influence change in my writing composition as I aped their way of curving lyrics from scripture and building content therein. Kutless also played quite a big role in my way and style of worship personally, especially their album Strong Tower.