Since releasing his debut mixtape in 2015, Akan has seen his profile rise within the hip hop/hip life circles albeit a steady one. Songs by Akan hasn’t become a staple for mainstream radio yet but, he is building a dedicated fan base.
First time listeners to his songs get enchanted by his lyricism and the content expressed in his music.
Others become fans after watching his performances, which are filled with passion and energy.
His lyrical ability has earned him comparison to the legendary Obrafour (per his mastery and fluency in the Twi language).
Others see Okomfo Kwadei and Okra in Akan. Whether Akan delivers a full 16 bars (in two verses) as on songs like Helebaba, Obiba J.K, Flow No (Konnichiwa freetsyle) or assumes the role of an okyeame on Poetra Asantewa’s ‘Vote for Me’ and ‘Freestyle 06’ with JaySo, Akan never disappoints.
If there’s one song Akan (formerly part of rap duo Azzholes along Billy Banger, now AYAT) showcased his lyrical abilities and declared his mission statement, it’s the Hammer (Last Two) produced collaborative song ‘Effortless’. According to Hammer, Akan wasn’t initially considered for the song that had Worlasi, Teephlow and Medikal. Hammer explains how Akan was brought on board:
Akan’s part was supposed to be another artiste. I had heard of him and posted his song about two months ago. People didn’t know I follow [him]. I was sure he could do it so I called him. I just told Akan that Teephlow, Medikal and Worlasi were on the song. None had heard what the other had done on the beat…
A very important decision by Hammer, of you ask me. Akan didn’t disappoint and his verse is the sparkling gem of the song.
On ‘Effortless’, Akan’s boastful talk is drenched in humility. He dramatizes his attributes like an Okomfo (fetish priest) exhibiting his magical skills at the durbar grounds. One hears him speak on how he’ll lead the way; how women and quest for riches are not his priorities; how he’ll ‘kill’ the fakes/other rappers. This is Akan with his own ‘Control’ verse. The talk is bold and fearless.
Below is a bar for bar breakdown of Akan’s verse on Effortless. I’m going to translate his words from Twi to English the best way I possibly can.
You’ve heard Teephlow’s flow and tasted Medikal’s tonic/medicine (here Akan references his two other colleagues on the song)
Now, watch what Kwabena Nkwantabisa is about to do (Kwabena is Akan’s name. Nkwantabisa is an appellation)
Hope you’ve heard Hammer’s handiwork.
The beat has cleared your hearing (this suggest that Hammer’s beat is the best one will hear)
Akan, follow me cos I’m about to show you where the right path is.
Here I am, wildly spinning; kicking dust into your eyes whiles you bear witness that the path is me (Akan paints a picture of an Okomfo, whose trance-like displays often results in the surroundings becoming dust-filled).
My waist cloth is girded. My words are tough and biting (Akan is ready to fight)
I’m here to piss you off so I can shave off your chest hair into my armpit and leave you humbled(only a man who’s totally beaten can have his chest hair shaven and that’s what Akan is purporting to do to anyone who comes close)
Sold my soul for heavenly knowledge and wisdom, so luxuries of life and women can wait for now.
I’m carrying my nation. I’ve drawn much from my wisdom trough
My shoulders larger, I’m keeping focus cos I can’t move my neck (well-built men often have thick shoulder muscles which keeps their neck straight. That’s Akan’s posture in this line)
Shut my eyes, dropped a bomb on y’all. It’s about to get bloody leaving some of you breathless.
I’m in the lead, your views are blocked (you can’t see cos of the bomb smoke).
You’ve lost your ways. You’re now trapped in a ditch.
The way to heaven, you’ve missed.
Akan dropped a low-key Control verse on Effortless. A verse that is not ‘in your face’ but did send a message of his intention to all those who would dare step on his lane.
For those who are curious to know what makes AKAN highly regarded by a section of music fans, just be at Nubuke this Saturday 25th February, 2017 when he takes his turn on Artiste Concert.
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