William Osusa, who is also known in the music circles as Tabu Osusa, is now a key part of the East African music industry. A Kenyan native, he is the founding Executive Director of Ketebul Music and for the last 30 years has been involved in the music industry as a promoter, producer, composer and band manager. He has been actively involved in shaping and running some of the top recording and performing bands in the country, including the much acclaimed Orchestra Virunga and The Nairobi City Ensemble.
Together with the director of Alliance Française in Nairobi, Tabu Osusa co-chairs the steering committee of the “Spotlight on Kenyan Music” project which seeks to discover and promote young talent, performing a blend of African music. This project is also supported by the Kenyan government through it’s Ministry of National Heritage and Culture. Tabu Osusa has also worked on in his capacity as Project Coordinator and Executive producer in the “Retracing Benga, Retracing Kikuyu Popular Music”, and “Retracing the Funky Hits” documentary projects which were commissioned and funded by the Ford Foundation office of Eastern Africa.
In 2004, Tabu was the lead consultant on a radio music project which focused on tracing the history of East African music, from the 1960s to the present. The Nation Media Group’s convergence and Special Projects department sponsored this project. The series entitled “Movin n Groovin in East Africa” went on air in July 2004. Tabu Osusa also regularly collaborates with the Goethe Institute in Nairobi as a music consultant and is currently working on a concert series known as “Muziki wa Kenya” with a view to promoting emerging Kenyan artists.
Tabu Osusa is among a few Africans involved in Arts and Culture who have been recognized by Cultures France in the current edition of their global cultural guide titled “Les Aventuriers de la culture”. He is also a member of Equation Musique, which is a programme that gives opportunity to 12 music industry professionals from Africain the frame of Womex, to meet with their European counterparts.
Finally, Tabu Osusa is currently working on another documentary project, entitled “Songs of Protest”. This project, also being funded by the Ford Foundation, is aimed at researching and documenting the origin and influence of political songs on African Liberation.