Nilerz Band performs at Monalisa de Boss Lounge

Talk about band music in Uganda and quite a few groups like Janzi, Afrigo, Qwela and Eagles Production will be summoned to your mind.

Nilerz Band Saxophonist entertains fans

This kind of art in Uganda has hugely gravitated around cover bands – those that mimick the original as perfectly as possible, and sometimes re-interpreting or change the original.

They often perform in smaller venues, such as pubs, clubs or parks, private events, for example, weddings and birthday parties.

Nilerz is however quite unique. It’s rather a recording band with a few singles out, but also veers into the former occasionally.

Nilerz Band vocalists dance along the tunes

From starting small – nearly half a decade ago, to securing theme nights at different popular locations in Kampala and it’s outskirts, growth has been one of it’s highlights.

The Ugandan band now boasts of various personnel that is to say three vocalists, three guitarists, keyboardist, drummer, saxophonist and percussionist

On Wednesday, the outfit resumed with a bang in their new home at Monalisa De Boss bar along Kisaasi, Kyanja road. A blend of reggae, urban contemporary, Congolese music and Afropop dominated their cover choices as they excited their fans.

One of Kampala’s renowned ‘party animals’ Allan Kanyike couldn’t hide his joy as he stepped on stage to shake every band member’s hand.

‘Party People’ Allan Kanyike dances on stage with Nilerz Band at Monalisa de Boss Lounge

“Awesome! Uganda Zaabu,” he said as he danced away the night.

Emmanuel Maruda, one of the proprieters of the band says the team of youthful members has gelled over time.

“The average age of the boys is 22. Their musicality level has risen from working together, over and over again. They currently compete with bands that have existed for over 10 years.”

Nilerz Band’s Emmanuel Maruda plays the guitar

Maruda adds that he’s “looking forward to helping the band become the ‘Ugandan UB40’.”

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