Top Tanzanian performer Diamond Platnumz calls Kenya his second home, and indeed it was on Wednesday night when he launched his latest album in Nairobi.
On stage, Diamond left a lasting impression on those in attendance. It was a night that many of the invited guests got value for their time, the heavy downpour notwithstanding.
The album, A Boy from Tandale, was unveiled at an exclusive event at the Kenya National Theatre and Diamond did what he does best.
A number of the invited local artistes were even overheard whispering that Diamond had schooled on how it is done.
From the setup to wardrobe change and dancers, everything was well planned and choreographed.
He changed his attire after every song in his album, which was telling a story from his album.
Diamond threw in a bed, market, a house and a host of models and dancers who also dressed up for the songs story lines.
The album, according to Diamond is a story line of his life, from the days he worked as a hawker in Tandale where he was born to his present stature as a global brand.
“This 18-track album is a tribute to my humble beginnings in Tandale, which is a slum in Tanzania. It is where I was raised, with a lot of challenges, but also where I formed my closest bonds with family and friends who to this day remain my support system. It is the place where amidst all the poverty, I discovered my talent,” Diamond said.
He said that he chose to launch the album in Kenya because he hates it when people picture him as a Tanzanian musician.
“Kenya is like my second home. In fact, I wish I was born in Kenya,” he said.
His goal however, he pointed out, has always been to prove to people that he is an African entertainer.
“That vision is about pushing the African vibe to the rest of the World and not only the Tanzanian one where I come from. Apart from that, Kenyans have been supporting my music ever since I started out and I wanted to thank them for that by launching my album here.”
Diamond, who has been dubbed the “King of East African Pop,” enjoys a large fan base in Kenya, and featured Grammy Nominated R&B artiste Omarion as his encore act.
He was also joined on stage by the group Hermonize and it was a battle of voices as the crew tried to outdo each other when they sang their hit Zamazakale.
The album, which will be available on the new Safaricom Songa platform from Friday this week and it will feature guest appearances from fellow Tanzanian vocalist Vanessa Mdee, Grammy Award winning reggae band Morgan Heritage, American stars Rick Ross, Omarion and Ne-Yo and Nigerian songbird Tiwa Savage, among other African artistes.
Diamond’s also brought out his entire family including his mother for the launch to show him support.