After a music hiatus, Eric Newton Mwai, known by his stage name Mr Boo, plans to make a comeback, focusing more on content than financial gains
Faith Gachobe @wangechigachobe
As many would agree, music is the fastest motivator in the world. New hit songs come and go, but there is nothing as good as a good old school song. One of such gospel music pioneers is Eric Newton Mwai who is famously known by his stage name Mr Boo. However, the award-winning artiste took a music break.
“I wanted to re-strategise my life as a musician and as a Christian” he says. During the five-year break, Mr Boo focused more on spreading God’s word, while still working as a real estate agent at Mwaniri Investments. As a result of being brought up by parents who were bishops, the 30-year-old desire to also reach out to young Christian grew on him, hence the music break.
Given the influence music gave him, during his break, Mr Boo has been reaching out to many in educational, Christian and corporate institutions, through his company, Life Changers Network.
Additionally, when he was still pursuing music as a full-time career, the father of two daughters produced music for a number of artistes including the likes of Dar Mjomba, Willy Paul, Camp David, Kevochi, and many musicians who have been hitting Kenyan airwaves through his studio, Crystal Media. Although his studio has been broken into three times in the past, Mr Boo re-established it and it has been up and running on Ngong Road, past Karen, Nairobi.
His greatest inspiration as he makes a comeback in 2018 is the spiritual growth he has gained in the past five years. Top of his list is teaching the young upcoming musicians how to create musical content that will impact people’s lives positively instead of focusing on a song’s financial gain.
Mr Boo’s big break as some would remember came in 2006; when he was signed at Calif Records as an official musician of Calif Gospel. “My first release was in the same year where we collaborated with an equally well celebrated musician at the time called Pilipili in a song called Ni Wewe,” recalls Mr Boo.
He later did many more music collaborations with musicians Mozay, Daddy Owen, Christine Ndela, Kaberere and Porcupine, which also received huge airplay on mainstream media. What people may not know is that he was born and raised in Dandora after which his parents and family relocated to Kerugoya when he was only five years old.
After high school at Kianyaga Boys High School in 2002, Mr Boo joined Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology to pursue a BSc Information Science.
Mr Boo completed university in 2008 and later got his first job as one of the first lecturers of Kiwan Computer College, Nairobi. He worked for two years at the college before he established Life Changers Network.
The company, which is involved in touring institutions all over Kenya guiding and counselling, mentoring the young people and helping the needy, is where Mr Boo’s fan base was created. Throughout his music career, Mr Boo is proud to have had numerous nominations and awards including the much applauded Groove Awards.
In the near future, Mr Boo will be working on music collaborations with upcoming musicians in a quest of guiding and teaching them what he has learnt from the music industry.
Among Mr Boo’s greatest fear in his music career has been how some of his fellow musicians cannot seem to live a normal life, walk in town without the fear of being identified and scrutinised.
It is, however, Eric’s wish to live a legacy to the next music generation. Even as he strives to revive his music career next year, one of the reasons Mr Boo took such a long break is because he believes that one’s career is not your life; but just a part of your life. In this case, Mr Boo says he has learned to score well in all pillars of his life.