The Kikuyu music industry has of late been flourishing, bringing great fortunes to all those in it.
Consequently, many have been attracted by the success of the already established artistes after realising that music can not only be a talent but a life career.
Or isn't it the reason the kind of the late George Wanjaro who was a career high school teacher joined the industry where he became very successful financially before his untimely death in 2005?
However, Wanjaro was, unfortunately, cut short from his 'side-kick' career job before he could really make 'real' money from it.
Today, Kikuyu music is a full-time career that no single artist can seemingly satisfy. The appetite for this music whether secular, gospel or contemporary is simply insatiable!
If that is the case, who are the richest Gikuyu musicians?
Well, it is hard to tell and that is why we will simply list them here going by their popularity and lengthiness in the industry.
Logically, popularity means more cash while their lengthiness in the industry means they have not been there throwing empty fists into the air. Or have they?
1. John Demathew
Demathew is not only insanely popular but has also been in the industry for over two decades. Almost all his hits are popular. Some even say that no song by Demathew can ever be boring. As a result, any live performances by him anywhere are always expensive because he is equally expensive!
2. Hezeh Ndung'u
The Akorino gospel artist can be credited for mentoring almost all the Akorino artistes you know about today. For a long time, he enjoyed the Akorino music monopoly which brought him untold fortunes.
3. Peter Kigia
Kigia whose music is always evergreen has not only made a big fortune through the sale of his literary works but also through his always-highly-attended music concerts and his recording studio, Kigia Music Recording Studio.
4. Muigai Wa Njoroge
Since he shot to the limelight in 2004 via his hit song 'Giki Kigutha' that basically warned about the HIV/AIDS epidemic, Muigai has always released a hit song after another. He has enjoyed the monopoly of the Kikuyu contemporary music till recently. The fortune he has made from this kind of music is undoubtedly second to none.
5. Ben Githae
When Githae, a renowned Kikuyu gospel singer during an interview with Citizen TV was last year asked how much the Jubilee Party paid him to compose the popular President Uhuru Kenyatta re-election campaign song, 'Tano Tena', he was hesitant to reveal the amount. He, however, revealed that he was 'handsomely rewarded'.
Githae who composes his songs both in Gikuyu and Kiswahili is popular across the board which can only mean that his fortunes are unrivalled by most of his close competitors.
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-Ndung'u Wa Gathua.