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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
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Top Songs by

  1.   Song
  2.   Wavin' Flag
  3.   Bang Bang
  4.   ABC's
  5.   Take a Minute
  6.   Somalia
  7.   If Rap Gets Jealous
  8.   Hurt Me Tomorrow
  9.   Moment
  10.   15 Minutes Away
  11.   Smile
  12.   I Come Prepared
  13.   Soobax
  14.   The Wall
  15.   The Sound Of My Breaking Heart
  16.   Waiting Is A Drug
  17.   The Seed
  18.   Nothing To Lose
  19.   With God on Our Side
  20.   People Like Me
  21.   Fire in Freetown
  22.   Dreamer
  23.   America
  24.   In the Beginning
  25.   My God
  26.   What's Hardcore?
  27.   Wash It Down
  28.   Alone
  29.   Sleep When We Die
  30.   Bulletproof Pride
  31.   70 Excuses
  32.   Simple
  33.   Gold In Timbuktu
  34.   Coming to America
  35.   Better
  36.   Is Anybody Out There?
  37.   Is It a Myth?
  38.   By the End of the Day
  39.   The African Way
  40.   T.I.A.
  41.   Fatima
  42.   Til We Get There
  43.   Until the Lion Learns to Speak
  44.   Boxing My Shadow
  45.   Voices in My Head
  46.   Strugglin'
  47.   The Dusty Foot Philosopher
  48.   My Old Home
  49.   On The Other Side
  50.   More Beautiful Than Silence
  51.   Blues For the Horn
  52.   Hoobaale
  53.   I Was Stabbed by Satan
  54.   Be Free
  55.   For Mohamoud (Soviet)
  56.   This Is My World
  57.   Drain My Grey Away
  58.   The African Way by Mwafrika
  59.   4Real: Kenya
  60.   [Bonus Material]
  61.   Does It Really Matter
  62.   Dusty Streets
  63.   Rap Gets Jealous
  64.   African Way - K'naan, Mwafrika
  65.   Nothing To Lose by Nasir "Nas" Jones
  66.   The Dusy Foot Philosopher
  67.   Qi Kai de Sheng
  68.   Come Prepared by Damian "Junior Gong" Marley

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