Moses Menja Gichia aka Trubadur Mosgi has established himself as a music Ambassador in Sweden. A one man guitarist, Trubadur specializes in the traditional tunes and the golden oldies. Trubadur has come a long way in his career and he is determined to climb to even greater heights.
When Trubadur was growing up in Nairobi’s Eastlands many years back, he had not dreamed of becoming a musician whose work would captivate large audiences. It was not until he left high school in the seventies that he discovered his talent. Living with a brother at Ofafa Maringo in Nairobi, Kenya, he started to frequent social places in the neighborhood for recreation. “There were a lot of activities including boxing, gymnasium and music”, he recalls.
Trubadur started playing the guitar and discovered that he was good at it. A Catholic Priest who was also a founding member of Undugu Boys Society of Kenya, provided the guitar. Trubadur, which is a French word meaning “one man guitar entertainer”, had heard about a music school called “Kenya Conservatoire of Music” which, in those days, was more of a mzungu affair. Very few Africans could afford to join the Institution and members were children from rich families.
During this period, Trubadur met Daniel Chvant, a teacher at the school who, after listening to the way he was playing the guitar, became convinced that he had a talent which needed to be developed.
“He promised that he would talk to some people to give me free guitar lessons and I turned out to have been the best student”, he says. Unfortunately, Chvant’s work permit expired and he went back to France.
By the time Chvant left, Trubadur had done both grade five and practical theory in music. Trubadur became a teacher and took up active performance at entertainment places in Nairobi and even appeared in Music Time, a TV program of the then Voice of Kenya (VoK) broadcasting Corporation.
As his music career grew, Trubadur worked as a part time teacher at various institutions like Ngong Hillcrest, Banda school and Nairobi academy. It was around this time that he met people like Joe Mwenda and Sam Muthee who also helped him initiate one man concerts.
Trubadur then moved to Mombasa Diani coast and pitched tent at the African Safari Beach Hotel, entertaining tourists.
The situation was changing very quickly and changes were also taking place in Trubadur’s personal life. After marrying a Finn, Trubadur moved to Sweden in 1993 where he met many musicians performing in the streets and even in trains at the underground stations. Trubadur ventured into the streets to perform and the response was good although he missed the Kenyan audience.
The Kenyan musician then began looking for the Kenyan community in Sweden. He found out that the Kenyan Embassy in Stockholm managed a joint called Kamukunji where Kenyans used to converge for refreshments. He went to Kamukunji and was introduced. From Kamukunji, he got invitations to house parties and celebrations.
Soon, he met Sammy Kasule Makonde and Vumbi Dekula who was a guitarist in Marquis Du Zaire in Tanzania. Together, they established a base at Starlight, playing zilizopendwa and other golden oldies on selected days. Their music drew many fans. Trubadur became Kenya’s music Ambassador in Sweden.
Get in touch with Trubadur: send mail to: email@example.com.