Kwesi Selassie, a.k.a. “The Lion of Africa,” was born and raised in Sekondi-Takoradi, the capital twin-city of the Western Region of Ghana in West Africa.
At 11 years, he began singing and playing guitar. Other instruments, such as drums and percussion aroused his interest, and he endeavored to learn how to play each of them. It would not be long before he was dubbed the “musical prince” by his secondary school mates and everyone in his hometown.
Like most parents, Mr. Kweku Sackey-Selassie and Queen Mother Nana Baah Agyekum 1, encouraged Kwesi to strive for a professional career. Strongly influenced by his parents, Kwesi proceeded to London to pursue a law career. However, his drive to become a musician was too strong to be reversed. After three years, Kwesi ended his law studies much to the disappointment of his parents and returned to Ghana to embrace his first love, music.
Kwesi began singing and playing the guitar with many spectacular bands all over West Africa. Maturing as an artist, Kwesi began writing, arranging, and producing songs in his native language Fanti as well as in English, French, and ten other African dialects, making him the preeminent multi-lingual reggae music artist. He also began traveling and performing around the world. In 1990, Kwesi was invited by Mr. Mario Gauthier to Quebec City, Canada where Kwesi would begin the upward trend in the global music industry.
Kwesi has maintained the original blend of his music comprised of grinding highlife (original music from Ghana), Reggae, Ragga, and a touch of European influence, as what he calls Highlife-Dub Reggae. His musical themes revolve around the universal emancipation of all people, love, unity, and socio-economic justice, a.k.a. conscious reggae music.
In 1995, Kwesi performed at the 11th Canadian Reggae Music Awards, and was nominated in 1997 for his CD album “False Prophets.” He was nominated in 1999 for “Judgment Day” as the Top Reggae Album of the Year. In November 1999, he was nominated in four categories at the African Music Awards in Toronto for Best Album, Composer, Release, and won Producer of the Year award for “Judgment Day.” With six acclaimed CD albums to his credit, Kwesi was nominated for “Reggae Recording of the Year” at the 2007 Canadian JUNO Awards for his CD album “SURVIVAL.”
Kwesi is among a handful of multi-lingual reggae artists uniquely bridging the African and Caribbean cultures.
Kwesi’s latest CD album “PROMISED LAND,” featuring 13 songs and 4 instrumental dubs, was released on May 17, 2009 and is available for digital download and at local retail outlets. Kwesi is currently staging live performances in North America, Europe, Middle East, and Africa, while preparing new songs for his highly anticipated CD album “PURE LOVE,” scheduled for release in APRIL 2011.