Sauti Sol is an award-winning afro pop group from Kenya. The newly crowned Best African Group at the 2016 MTV Africa Music Awards #MTVMAMA and African Muzik Magazine Awards #AFRIMMA respectively. They are the current East African Artiste of the Year (2016 Bingwa Awards) having won the Best African Act at MTV Europe Music Awards 2014 and bagged a BET Awards nomination for Best International Act-Africa in the year 2015.
Sauti recieved a whooping 4 nominations at the 2016 MTV MAMA and 5 nominations at the 2016 AFRIMMA. Comprising Bien-Aime Baraza, Willis Austin Chimano, Polycarp Otieno and Savara Mudigi; the group mixes their soulful voices with vocal harmonies, guitar riffs and drum rhythm. Sauti Sol blends warm resonant pop with traditional Kenyan influences.
Their mélange of energetic rhythms has promoted the group to become one of Africa’s most celebrated and East Africa’s pioneers of a fresh sound that has inspired the sprouting of many other bands from East Africa. In 2016 Sauti Sol made history by being the first Kenyan artistes to run a successful and professional nationwide tour and spread it across Africa and beyond. The Live and Die in Afrika tour cities included Nairobi, Nakuru, Eldoret, Meru, Mombasa and Kisumu, Dar Es Salaam, Kampala, Kigali, Johannesburg, Mbabane and London.
In 2016, Washington Post featured Sauti Sol: “Kenyan band takes Afro-pop Music Worldwide”. Live and Die in Afrika was added in BBC
Africa’s Top 10 tracks of 2015 and Okayafrica’s Top 15 Albums of 2015. Sauti Sol were also listed as Billboard Africa’s Most Promising
Music Group, The Standard Newspaper’s 2016 Agenda Setters and DRUM Magazine East Africa’s 2015 Movers and Shakers. In 2015,
Sauti Sol made global headlines when USA President Barack Obama Lipala Danced to their song Sura Yako in Kenya at a State House dinner event hosted by President Uhuru Kenyatta (25th July 2015). They also danced to Sura Yako with Richard Branson at his exclusive dinner hosted at NY’s Hudson Hotel. Sauti Sol’s viral Lipala Dance featured in the 2015 BBC’s ‘A Richer World’ season and documentary for BBC World Service Radio, World TV and 1Xtra. Their controversial video Nishike declared by Google Most Watched video in Kenya 2014. Sauti Sol / Amos & Josh Nerea declared in Kenya’s Top 10 Most Searched Topics on Google.
Sauti Sol’s notable showcases include their 2016 Live and Die in Afrika countrywide Kenyan tour, a performance at the 2015 Global
Citizen Festival alongside international acts Pearl Jam and Chris Martin (Coldplay), performing at the Milan Expo 2015, the 2015
#SautiSolRoad2BET American Tour, Sauti Sol Live in Kampala Concert, Kigali UP Festival (2015), Koroga Festival (2015), Industry Nite
in Dubai (2015), Jembeka Party in Tanzania (2015), Zanzibar International Film Festival (2014), Netherland’s Eindhoven (2014),
Blankets & Wine at 50 Festival (2014), Boombaataa Festival (2014), Festival Sur le Niger in Mali (2012), Kenya’s Niko Na Safaricom Live Tour (Sept-Dec 2012) and Malawi’s City of Stars festival (2013).
Sauti Sol has performed at South by Southwest Music Festival (SXSW) Austin, Texas in 2011 and 2012—marking their first American appearance. Celebrated by a host of fans, fellow artists and bloggers as the “most entertaining” and “best dressed act” at the festival, Sauti Sol made a return to America February 14 in Las Vegas, making history as the first African band to perform at at the iconic Hard Rock Café. They have also performed at the Kalorvy Vary International film festival and Colours of Ostrava (2012) – Czech Republic’s biggest music festival.
Sauti Sol has also performed at widely televised events including the MTV Africa Music Awards (2014 & 2015), the inaugural Africa
Magic Viewers Choice Awards held in Nigeria (2013) and Big Brother Africa Reality Show in South Africa (2012), the inauguration of st Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta (2013) and Kenya’s 51 Independence Day national celebrations (December 2014). The highlight of the day was when the president of the republic of Kenya was caught on camera singing along to their smash hit “Sura Yako”.
In 2014, they were endorsed by H. E the President of Kenya Uhuru Kenyatta as the Best Act to win a 2014 MTV EMA. He later invited them to perform at his birthday and at a State House Banquet in honor of the UN secretary general Ban Ki Moon.