Slacker Logo



Born in Mogadishu, Somalia, just as the civil unrest that rocked the country was beginning, rapper K'NAAN spent the early years of his life trying to avoid death and listening to the hip-hop records sent to him from America by his father, who had left Somalia earlier. When K'NAAN (whose name means "traveler" in Somali) was 13, he, his mother, and his two siblings were able to leave their homeland and join relatives in Harlem, where they stayed briefly before moving to Rexdale, Ontario, where there was a large Somali community. As soon as his English started improving he began rapping, and in tenth grade he dropped out of school and traveled around North America for two years, performing occasionally. Through his friendship with Sol Guy, part of promotion team Direct Current Media, K'NAAN was able to perform at the United Nations' 50th anniversary concert in 1999, held in Geneva, where he used his platform to publicly criticize the United Nations' handling of the Somali crisis in the 1990s. One of the audience members, Senegalese singer Youssou N'Dour, was so impressed by the young MC's performance and courage that he invited him to contribute to his 2001 album Building Bridges, a project through which K'NAAN was able to tour the world. In 2002, he met Jarvis Church, part of the Track and Field Productions team that helped propel Nelly Furtado to fame, a connection that eventually led to a record. The Dusty Foot Philosopher came out in Canada in 2005, and was followed with tour spots with Mos Def and Talib Kweli, as well as a performance at Live 8. In 2007, the live album On the Road appeared and then, two years later, the album Troubadour became K'NAAN's first for the major-label A&M. After his track "Wavin' Flag" became the anthem for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, his More Beautiful Than Silence EP arrived in 2012. ~ Marisa Brown
Read More Read Less

Stations Featuring

Albums by

Top Songs by

  1.   Song
  2.   Wavin' Flag
  3.   Immigrants (We Get the Job Done) featuring Rene "Residente"
  4.   Bang Bang
  5.   ABC's
  6.   Somalia
  7.   Take a Minute
  8.   Hurt Me Tomorrow
  9.   If Rap Gets Jealous
  10.   Moment
  11.   Hoobaale
  12.   Is Anybody Out There?
  13.   T.I.A.
  14.   Til We Get There
  15.   Wash It Down
  16.   I Come Prepared by Damian "Junior Gong" Marley
  17.   Fatima
  18.   America
  19.   15 Minutes Away
  20.   I Was Stabbed by Satan
  21.   What's Hardcore?
  22.   Soobax
  23.   70 Excuses
  24.   My God
  25.   Alone
  26.   On The Other Side
  27.   The Wall
  28.   Bulletproof Pride
  29.   The Sound Of My Breaking Heart
  30.   Simple
  31.   Waiting Is A Drug
  32.   Gold In Timbuktu
  33.   The Seed
  34.   Better
  35.   More Beautiful Than Silence
  36.   Nothing To Lose
  37.   Is It a Myth?
  38.   By the End of the Day
  39.   Be Free
  40.   The African Way
  41.   People Like Me
  42.   Fire in Freetown
  43.   Dreamer
  44.   Until the Lion Learns to Speak
  45.   For Mohamoud (Soviet)
  46.   Voices in My Head
  47.   In the Beginning
  48.   Strugglin'
  49.   Smile
  50.   My Old Home
  51.   With God on Our Side
  52.   Blues For the Horn
  53.   Boxing My Shadow
  54.   The Dusty Foot Philosopher
  55.   Sleep When We Die by Keith Richards

Artists Related to K'naan


Loading Sliders...
  1. + -



Casting to |