What Mejja Did Before Clemmo Discovered His Talent
Mejja Aka Okwonkwo
byJanuary 10, 2021
Renowned Genge artiste Major Nemeye Khadija alias Mejja AKA Okwonkwo has come from a humble background to make it big in the music industry. The rapper had a tough life growing up in the slums of Nyeri.
Mejja has revealed his childhood, revealing that his family was shoved into poverty following his grandmother's death. Mejja narrated.
"In primary school, we had a good life as my grandmother was well off. Soon after she died, it was known that my mother was not her biological daughter. So the family was against my mother inheriting any property. To make matters worse, my mother was having constant headaches, and we didn't know she had a tumour as we had no money to visit a specialist,"
The Genge rapper was forced to do odd jobs to make ends meet not excluding being a hawker and a cleaner at a hotel. "I did many odd jobs, including selling groundnuts. Touched by my plight, an empathetic man gave me a job cleaning his hotel in exchange for lunch."
Mejja developed an interest in music while watching his elder brother rap. He started writing songs as he went about selling khat/Miraa at night.
"My interest in music started after watching my elder brother rapping. I started imitating his flow and realized that my peers liked it, and the girls were smitten. I started writing music- at the time, I had a job selling mogoka at night."
The 'Jana Kulienda' aje hitmaker's big break came as he performed at Uhuru Gardens in Nairobi in a music competition. By then Calif Record's the owner/Producer Clement (Beat ya Clemmo) noticed his talent and decided to sign him. He continued;
"I came to Nairobi to perform at Uhuru Gardens, and that's when Clemmo noticed me. He took my number and said he wanted to record the song; I had just performed (jana kuliendaje). After six months, Clemmo called me and welcomed me to his home.
Clemmo is one of the people who connected me to my dreams." The talented musician also explained why he opted to use his mother's name and popularised it. He uses his mother's second name Khadija because she single-handedly took care of him and his two brothers since they were little;
"I call myself Khadija because my father was a sperm donor. As a child, I didn't understand the sacrifices she made for us. Sometimes, I would find her crying in the house, and she'd act like nothing was wrong,"
"When I grew up and had my family, I realized she went through a lot to raise three boys. After coming to Nairobi, people would always comment about the name saying it's a woman's, so I started insisting mtoto wa Khadija. She's my inspiration."