Coke Studio Africa was officially launched in Kigali on August 26 at Beirut, Kibagabaga. Bruce Itahiwacu, known as Bruce Melodie, will be country’s first representative this year on the show, which attracts artistes from around the globe.
The launch was also attended by Uganda’s Lilian Mbabazi, an Afro-soul and pop singer who has previously represented Uganda at Coke Studios.
Bruce Melodie came to the lime light in 2011 when he released songs like Ndumiwe, Tubivemo and Ndumiwe featuring to Ikinya.
The Afro-R&B artiste has since then evolved. He has worked with many local and regional musicians such as Uganda’s Jamal Wasswa, Fille Mutoni and Radio of Good Lyf.
The artiste has also taken part in several seasons of the Guma Guma Super Star — Rwanda’s leading music competition — where he has continued to impress.
While taking part in this year’s Coke Studio, the artiste worked with different Africa musicians and producers such as Kenyan rapper Khaligraph Jones and South African music producer DJ Maphorisa, who returns to Coke Studio for a second time.
This season’s show will be broadcasted in more than 30 countries across Africa and will have artistes and producers from South Africa, Rwanda, Zimbabwe, Angola, Uganda, Kenya, Togo, Mauritius, Madagascar, Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Mozambique, Democratic Republic of Congo and Cameroon.
The past edition featured artistes and producers from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Nigeria, Ghana, Mozambique, DR Congo, Ethiopia, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire and Togo. South Africa had its own show.
This year Coke Studio Africa and Coke Studio South Africa have been merged into one platform.
According to Coke Studio organisers, participating artistes are chosen based on a combination of market research, radio charts, playlists and advice from industry specialists from across Africa.
Diverse African music talent
Coke Studio is a non-competitive show that brings together diverse African music talent together for a world-class show. It also gives upcoming artistes the opportunity to work with some of the best local and international music talent.
The show brings together artistes of different genres, ages and regions for a music fusion experience.
The show has featured award winning artistes like Jason Derulo, Neyo and Trey Songz, who have not only mentored African musicians, but also recorded and released songs with them.
“The launch of this show in the country is a great accomplishment, not only for Coca Cola Rwanda, but the region’s music industry,” said Mark Nkera, the brand manager for Bralirwa Ltd, who are partners with Coca Cola Rwanda.
The first Coke Studio episode will be aired from September 10, on TV One. In a bid to promote the show, the episode will feature various Coca Cola draws, where winners will be rewarded instantly.
Regionally, Rwanda has featured in different music platforms such as the Tusker Project Fame, where Alpha Rwirangira won in the show’s third season in 2009.
“Musicians need to keep perfecting their skill,” said Julius Kayoboke, the marketing director for Bralirwa Ltd.
Bruce Melodie said participating in Coke Studio will grow his image and music and challenge him as an artiste.