Residency artists and researchers Music KiliHippie Hip-hop music producer and artist I’m KiliHippie. I’m a hip-hop music producer and artist from Nairobi, Kenya, here to work on The Blacc Canvas with work partner and musical soul mate, BoiBlacc. The Blacc Canvas is a follow up to The Blacc Circle, which is available on all streaming platforms. Our music is rooted in finding truth and reflecting it so that it may nourish the lives of those whose ears it finds. It’s naturally introspective art that’s guided by God through an inward journey. The result is a uniqueness of lyrics and sound that shows itself naturally and effortlessly. I’m expecting to learn different perspectives to approach my way of making my own art even beyond The Blacc Canvas. I hope to understand the different contexts that my Saari Fellows come from and use that as inspiration to be more open-minded to humanity as a whole, with the expectation that the knowledge this evokes in me will make me a better human being first, then a better artist and musician. I treat my artistic endeavours as someone dedicated to an 8 to 5 job would treat their work. This is because my mind tends to desire structure and to understand my environment; it also helps me make the most of my day as the schedule I adhere to keeps me productive. True to my hip-hop roots, I sample obscure music the world over to make my beats that I then share with the writers and vocalists I work with. I spend my days year-round making and mixing beats – a continuous cycle of working on different kinds of projects with rappers and singers and working to fit my duties as a mixing and mastering engineer into my schedule. It can be gruelling, and I work hard, but what I do never really feels like work to me. KiliHippie is a hip-hop and R&B producer from Kilimani, Nairobi, Kenya, and an alien in his own right who makes music that fits seamlessly in this digital age while touching on the large influence the Golden Age of Hip-hop has had on him. He has been producing for three years and released his first project ‘Tending to Infinity: 1’ in June 2017, just 3 months into his self-taught production journey. He considers himself a ‘late-bloomer’ to the music scene as a creator and contributor, but has had a deep connection with music since childhood. His ‘aha’ moment came when he dropped out of university in 2017, a turning point he considers as a divine awakening! KiliHippie is influenced above all by the greats of hip-hop production J. Dilla and 9th Wonder. He puts it best, ‘Picture it. If 9th Wonder & J. Dilla had a baby and that baby made classic Hip-hop that moves with the times. That’s me. I’m that baby.’ His lush sound is characterised by idyllic samples backed by fat, crisp drums, while the vocalists he works with display sharp lyricism that reflects their thought-provoking poetry. KiliHippie has kept the music coming with numerous releases. His latest EP, ‘1447, Vol. 1’, with Nairobi rapper The Swamiii, captures his sound in its prime. This sits pretty alongside his other 2020 release, ‘The Blacc Circle’ with BoiBlacc as well as his 2019 EP and album releases, ‘Beloved BSides’ and ‘Hii Si Demo’. He describes himself as an artist subservient to the art, and the beauty this approach brings is exemplified in these aforementioned bodies of work. He is a recipient of the ‘Goethe Talents Scholarship’, an annual music scholarship organised by the Goethe-Institut, as well as an upcoming ‘Saari Fellow’ of Kone Foundation, where he will occupy a residency in Mynämäki, Finland, in January and February 2021 alongside his musical soul mate BoiBlacc. KiliHippie continues recording and writing music every day while exploring further creative expression as a music entrepreneur attempting to go above and beyond where those before him have yet to. His is a mission to inspire!