Kenyan Rap Artiste Kantai Passes On

By / February 27, 2019 : 15:00 / Breaking News, Showbiz News / 1 Comment
Kenyan Rap Artiste Kantai Passes On

Kenyan rapper and hip hop artise ‘Kantai’ also known as ‘Kantadda’ is dead . Born Chris Kantai in Kenya and raised in the United States, Kantai’s rap-style and flow easily passed as authentic American. He rose to the lime light as a pioneer rapper in Kenya over a decade ago with hits such as ‘Happy’ featuring Stella Mwangi aka STL.


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Having started rapping at 12 years of age, Kantai’s lyrical prowess and mastery of the hip hop genre was unrivaled . Some of his hits “Kantadda”, “Lifestyle” and “Issues” set him apart in the crowded hip hop scene in the period 2004-2006 when he returned to Kenya from US.

His domination continued through the year 2010, at a time when the Kenyan rap music industry masters included Octopizzo who had just caught on, Juliani and the real OG Khaligraph Jones who at the time was still considered an underground rapper.

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Kantai, just like in his famous single ‘Issues’ had issues that couldn’t be absorbed by a tissue. Despite being talented, he often drowned his stresses in alcohol. This negatively affected his music career as he was unable to keep up with the fast rising hip hop music industry. He went underground for a while, keeping away from the limelight and releasing no new music.

‘I have pretty much been dealing with domestic life and my own personal issues. I felt I needed a little break,’

Kantai said in an interview with the Daily Nation soon after his attempt at a comeback 6 years ago.

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On his return, he  recorded and released ‘Almighty’ a comeback song whose content was ‘coming from the long break in the industry’. This track, according to Kantai was dedicated to family to show the love and kindness from God.

At the time, Chris’s son was only 3 years of age and the gospel music wave had caught on in Kenya. Even though, Almighty was not well received , he went on to record Incredible soon after with his new outfit dubbed Halaiki Family consisting of a number of up coming rap artistes as well as producers such as Mswahili Teddy and video director PoQpine.


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After the release of Almighty and Incredible, Kantai’s music was still unable to rise and rank high on Kenyan charts, a set back that sent the once dominant rapper into depression and alcoholism.


He delved into cheap liquor and often drunk himself broke and was thus unable to record new music even after promising hit after hit during an interview when he released Almighty.

With the rise and rise of once underground rapper Khaligraph Jones, whose style was almost similar to his, the duo teamed up in yet another attempt at a comeback for the legend. Khaligraph Jones and Kantai thus recorded and released ‘Ting badi malo’. The track released 3 years ago, saw Khaligraph outshine the legendary Kantai. His flow was not as tight as it used to be when he first set his eyes on the Kenyan rap industry.


READ ALSO: Legendary Zimbabwean musician Oliver Mtukudzi bows out at 66

Chris is said to have died after a short illness attributed to over indulgence in alcohol. May his soul rest in peace!


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