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    Sarkodie, the lyrical speedster and Rapperholic

    by Oral Ofori, MyZongo.com
    posted Wednesday, 28 September 2011 13:06| 0 Comments

    Ghanaian born rapper, Sarkodie, told me even though most of his fans believe he gets his inspiration to rap with such incredible speed in 'Twi' (a popular local Ghanaian dialect) from American rap star Twister, he personally says that most of his inspiration to rap so fast comes to him from observing another American rap superstar; Buster Rhymes.

    Sarkodie said this when we met up during his tour of the USA in Washington DC where he performed for his fans.

    Sarkodie says the reason he feels more inspired by Buster Rhymes than by Twister is mainly because Twister does not challenge himself enough and so that there creates is a limitation. Currently working on and promoting his second album which he calls 'Rapperholic', Sarkodie did not fail to amaze me with his rapid speed lyrics.

    Currently one of the fastest rapper in Africa and a five time award winner at the 2010 Ghana Music Awards, the speed rapper describes his musical genre as not just hip life, but twi pop, which is a fusion of western beats with local Ghanaian lyrics and rhythm.

    Presently Ghana's fastest rapper and artiste of the year 2010, Sarkodie made his entrance into the rap scene by competing over the phone with other local rap wannabes on a radio program called 'Kasahare Level', hosted by one of Ghana's ace radio presenters Dr. Duncan of Adom FM fame.

    All this was about a decade ago, during those years as a competitor on Adom FM's 'Kasahare Level' radio show, Sarkodie did not only impress Dr. Duncan; the show's host, with his literally breathtaking speed, but he also went ahead to outperform competitor after competitor to become the unquestionable underground rap champion after defeating 18 people over the years.

    This feat earned him that much needed respect in the Ghanaian rap circles and also the admiration of Dr. Duncan, who is Sarkodie's manager today.

    From the days of competing in street battles in his neighborhood in Tema; where he grew up in Ghana, to becoming a rap king on a prolific radio station, to releasing his first album in which he featured great masters of Ghana's rap industry like Obrafour that earned him the respect and admiration of Reggie Rockstone; the Godfather and founder of Ghanaian rap music also known as hip-life, and getting endorsed by Akon, an American rap superstar and CEO of Konvict Music, Sarkodie's yet to be released second album; 'Rapperholic' is so highly anticipated to be a blast and his fans all across the world are anxiously awaiting its release.

    People are now recognizing and buying into the Sarkodie persona and not just his music, which is why the artiste believes it has become necessary to build himself a brand and protect it by making sure he becomes and remains a positive influence especially among the youth, who form a majority of his fan base. Sarkodie tells me some of his young fans simply like him just for who he is and not necessarily for his music.

    I was initially a little surprised when Sarkodie mentioned Tracy Chapman, besides Buster Rhymes and Twister, as having had a positive influence on his career as a musician.

    Thinking about it later on, that wasn't totally surprising because that explains some of this rapper's deep lyrics which tend to speak to a listener's mind and soul, another obvious reason is that the rapper is also a practicing Christian. On the local Ghanaian rap stage, Sarkodie revealed that he 'worships' Obrafour, one of my personal favorites as well, and therefore feels so humbled to have had the opportunity to feature him on his first album.

    Being nominated in eight respective categories of the past Ghana Music Awards and walking away with awards in five of those categories including 'Artiste of the year' is an achievement Sarkodie tells me he dreamt about way back in his junior high school years.

    Yet when I asked him if he felt he was living his dreams today, he emphatically responded NO! His present achievements are just the beginning of his dreams, which presents a bigger future than what we see of him today because 'I wants to have a worldwide appreciation of my music that travels beyond the boarders of Ghana' he says.

    The recording of Sarkodie's yet to be released new album, 'Rapperholic' is completed he tells me, yet there's some work being done on mastering and mixing it and sometime late this year or early in 2012, the album will be released.

    Sarkodie will not say who's being featured on his new album but yours truly can reveal that likely artiste on that album will most obviously include Akon and possibly Ashanti, both American music icons. For now I can't wait to get myself an autographed copy of this album.

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