Joh Makini


John Simon, better known by his stage name ‘JohMakini’ comes from Arusha, a city with a highly credible “hard core” emergent Swahili Hip Hop scene. He has been involved in music since 1995 but it wasn’t until 2004 that his name started to be spoken in almost reverential terms. This coincided with the release of ‘Hawapendi’, quickly followed by ‘Hao’.

In 2006 the single ‘Chochote, Popote’ confirmed his reputation and was a massive hit all over Tanzania. JohMakini released his first album, ‘Zamu Yangu’, late 2006. The album contained hits such as ‘Chochote, popote’, ‘Hao’, ‘Tommorrow’ and ‘Kama Kawa’. This was followed by another string of hit singles including ‘Ufalme’, ‘Muda’, ‘Kila Wakati’ and ‘Ni aje, ni vipi’, ‘Stimu zimelipiwa’ To date, his new single 'Karibu Tena' has become a national hit and has received massive airplays in all the radio and television stations in East Africa.

His success can be attributed to his working with Tanzania’s leading producers such as; Professor Ludigo, Marco Chali, P Funk, Mandugu Digital, Fish Crab, Q, Nahreel, Jors Bless and Pancho. He has also kept in touch with his roots that is northern zone of Tanzania and Arusha City as he always represent his Hip Hop clique ‘River Camp Soldiers’ and his hometown, which he refers to in his songs as ‘A-City’ and by calling himself ‘Mwamba wa Kaskazini’, meaning the Northern Rock. This has been an added value to his popularity.


TZDar es Salaam, Tanzania
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Isaac Sultan
Profile added by Stanley Gazemba on 04 Mar 2015
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