Unmasking the Nairobi Horns Project

The Nairobu Horns Project in a jam mood

Article by Shelmith Maureen

The Nairobi Horns project is a brilliant jazz ensemble whose members comprises of a collective of creative musicians. Nairobi Horns Project mainly is made up of three members namely: Mackinlay Mutsembi on trumpet; who is also the band leader, Rabai Mokua on Saxophone; lady’s charm and Victor Kinama on Trombone ; The energetic dancer. The Horns section is backed up by an eclectic team: Amani Mbaya who is wicked on The drum kits, Kasiva Mutua on the Percussions, Moise Basinza Congolese prodigy on bass, Newman Owor excellent killer on guitar who hails from Uganda.

Nairobi Horns Project performances are distinguished by their energy than anything else.

They have an astonishing collective mastery of the percussive arts. This was predominantly brought out by Kasiva on the bongo drums and Amani on the drum kits. They weaved interlocking patterns that were consistently fascinating and absorbing. The monstrous brass section grooves add a considerable heft and wallop to the music as the sax soloed by Rabai was incisively above the rhythmic ferment of the music they produce and perform.

It is also interesting to note that among the various Kenyan acts that were on stage at the Safaricom Jazz lounge, the Nairobi Horns Project, never did a rendition of a famous song. They used the opportunity to share music originally arranged and written by their band leader, Mac.

Nairobi Horns Project’s music is all about the mighty collective sound and the eclectic members that showcase individual moments of brilliance to the delight of the crowd.

However, for me, the most eye catching member was Rabai when he did a solo for a song called Mola. Rabai played with power, precision, and brilliant technical prowess as he explored the conventional range of his instrument and beyond, with the excellent support from the rest of the band.

From the previous event, I had heard them perform at, I could clearly make out every note they hit as I was standing at the back of the room. The size of the crowd roaring for an encore was a true testament of the fact that Nairobi Horns Project are genuine jazz prodigies.

Edited by: Kuchio J.

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