Tay Grin says Malawian artists must embrace culture

Malawi’s hip-hop artist, Tay Grin, says his trip to Scotland where he went to perform at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games Festival, has taught him that artists need to embrace their culture if they are to grow the art industry in their countries.

The rapper, who is also known as Nyau King, was speaking after his Saturday performance at the Glasgow Green Live Zone in Glasgow, Scotland’s largest city.

Tay Grin

Tay Grin

Esau of The Very Best, Tay Grin and Dave of Stanley Odd. Photo by Jannica Honey

Esau of The Very Best, Tay Grin and Dave of Stanley Odd. Photo by Jannica Honey

Team Malawi dancing on stage as Tay Grin with YADi. Photo by Jannica Honey.

Team Malawi dancing on stage as Tay Grin with YADi. Photo by Jannica Honey.

Tay Grin said there was a lot that Malawian artists can borrow from the Scottish people to grow the country’s art and music industry.

“We have to embrace our culture. What I have learnt is that people of Scotland do it so well in embracing their culture and they get a lot of support,” said Tay Grin, real name Limbani Kalilani.

Speaking from Glasgow on Sunday, he added: “They Support one another and there’s a lot of investment in their industry and talent, so as Malawi, we need to invest in our industry and talent.”

Tay Grin’s remarks came a day after he also spoke on the same during his interview with the BBC Scotland in Glasgow over the weekend.

The Malawian rapper, who fuses traditions and modern hip-hop to help promote and introduce Malawian music to the rest of the world, dwelt much on enhancing Malawian culture.

During the interview with the BBC, which also featured Lake of Stars crew and Scottish artists, Tay Grin observed that working together with Scottish artists will help build Malawi’s industry and creatives.

“We also touched on Lake of Stars and how Scottish people should not only look at Malawi as a charity case but a tourist destination as well as a place they can come and have a great time and enjoy with their family.

“We spoke about the greatness of the Lake of Stars and encouraged people from Scotland to come out to the festival this September,” said Tay Grin.

At the festival in Glasgow, Tay Grin performed alongside Malawian artists Mafilika, The Very Best and Scottish hip-hop group Stanley Odd as well as Algerian-British artist YADi.

“The show was massive. The fans loved and danced to every song; Scotland is music central and they love to experience new stuff. It was such a great stage and I felt so welcomed. I can’t wait for the whole team to do this again at the Lake of Stars in Malawi,” said Tay Grin.

Lake of Stars, a music and art festival that promotes Malawian arts and tourism through international interaction and exposure, took advantage of the Games to organize the Glasgow Commonwealth Games Festival to strengthen creative connections between Scotland and Malawi to bring the sounds of Malawi to the world.

Scotland and Malawi’s shared history goes back 150 years and Scotland’s tourist industry is valued at £4.3 billion with its creative sector worth £2.8 billion.

There are already over 80,000 Scots actively engaged with Malawi and the Lake of Stars says “if we can build on these connections it will create more opportunities for Malawian artists to perform in Scotland and the UK.”

Meanwhile, Tay Grin is in England where he is scheduled to have two performances in Manchester on August 2 and Nottingham on August 9, before heading to Dublin, Ireland for his final show.

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