Every once in a while, there comes a moment when we deem it absolutely necessary to appreciate and celebrate some illustrious sons of our motherland who over the past years, never relented in their efforts to bless our country with a piece of their enormous God-given talents.
Yesterday, 20th of November, 2017, marked the birthday of one interesting personality revered by many as one of the greatest wordsmiths of all time, so long as African Hip-hop music is concerned. Call him M.anifest the godMc and you will not be far from right.
Born Kwame Ametepe Tsikata, but known to the world as M.anifest which according to him is more than just a stage name but a statement of conviction and a declaration of all things to come.
Known to many as the manifestation of absolute pride in Ghanaian pride and heritage, M.anifest embodies the truest sense of “Self-Assured Sense of an African Identity”
M.anifest’s flawless lyrical dexterity, clinical delivery and ambidextrous kinda flow has endeared him to many aficionados of good music and his peers as well, earning him superlative compliments including the following;
Kwesta Darkar – “M.anifest is Africa”
Damon Albam – “M.anifest raises the bar every time”
Flowking Stone – “M.anifest is the most intelligent rapper in Ghana”
Obrafuor – “M.anifest is a contemporary and English version of me”
Olamide – “If you want the best music, listen to M.anifest”
Rocky Dawuni, Spoek Mathambo, Proverb, Tehn Diamond, et al.
M.anifest is not only admired by his fellow musicians but also diplomats including the two recents; French and German ambassadors to Ghana.
People who have followed with keen interest Ghana’s musical trajectory in recent times would agree with no iota of doubt that 2017 has been quite generous a year to M.anifest by dinct of his hardwork and passion for originality.
His unquestionable desire to challenge the status quo as a rapper, transform our consciousness, tease our intellectual capacity with mouth-watering educative tunes and his overwhelming songwriting approach that reflects his Ghanaian culture and his sojourns in the west earned him a well deserved spotlight.
His contributions towards music has been recognized both in Ghana and across the borders, and as we celebrate 35 years of his life well lived today, let’s take a look at some of the achievements he worked tirelessly for in 2017.
In Ghana, the “no shortcut to heaven” hitmaker bagged home two of the 2017 edition of the VGMA awards for the hip-hop song of the year and best rapper of the year categories, Best Individual Style from Glitz Awards, and bagged two separate diplomatic roles as and influencer of UNICEF’s #LetsBeFair project and Ambassadorial role for Ghana to South Africa in Cultural and Business Chamber.
On the international scene, he managed to grab the Midem best artist (2017) for his transnationally acclaimed NoWhere Cool Album at the International Midem Awards, held in France.
For those who don’t know, The MIDEM ARTIST ACCELERATOR (MAA) is an international career booster for musical talents across the world. M.anifest who was recently named cultural ambassador for the Ghana South Africa Business Chamber was the only African artiste at the event and won the award against all odds.
He also won Hip hop song of the year at GMA UK 2017.
What is more, M.anifest was acknowledged for his enourmous contribution to the making of the theme and credit song for ‘Forever Tree,’ a groundbreaking Black historical fantasy short film. The film which stars Wendell Pierce and Olivia Washington premiered at the Bentonville Film Festival, an annual film festival helmed by Academy Award and Golden Globe-winning actress Geena Davis in Arkansas, USA.
A short film of his newly released video of his song, Be My Woman was nominated for the 2018 La Jolla International Film Festival.
Still, on the international environment, M.anifest’s yet to be released video of Simple Love song of the No where cool album has won the 2017 SASO award in South Africa.
He has also scored a movie together with drumroll ‘On Monday of Last Week’ directed by Akosua Adoma Owusu based on a story by Chimamanda Adichie While he celebrates his birthday today, we also celebrate these awesome achievements and hope that he continues to strive to be a beacon of hope and excellence for everybody in his or her bloom of youthful exuberance looking up to him.
M.anifest, was born Kwame Ametepee Tsikata to renowned lawyer Tsatsu Tsikata and Priscilla Nketiah, who happens to be the daughter of Prof. Emeritus J.H. Nketiah, one of the famous ethnomusicologists and composers in Africa.
He holds a Master of Arts degree in Economics from Macalester College and his affinity to collaborate easily with other artists across a wide range of spectrum of music earned him the privilege of working with great personalities like Erykah Badu, Femi Kuti, Tony Allen, Flea of Red Hot Chili Peppers fame, Damon Albarn, Micasa, Proverb etc.
At the end of time, may you be remembered as an epitome of how life should be lived. Happy terrific belated birthday to you M.anifest.
A Felix G submission, November 20, 2017.