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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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Stations Featuring

    Underground Hip-Hop

    Underground Hip-Hop
    1 song

Albums by

Top Songs by

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

Artists Related to K'naan


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