Julius Owino, better known by his stage name Juliani, is a Kenyan musician, poet, and social activist.
Juliani, whose real name is Julius Owino, was born on 29th May 1983 in Dandora, Nairobi, Kenya. He is 40 years old. Juliani celebrates his birthday on 29th May of every year.
Juliani early life
He grew up in a humble background, and his parents were both involved in social activism, which influenced his views and career path.
Juliani’s mother was a teacher, and his father was a community organizer who fought for the rights of slum dwellers in Nairobi.
As a child, Juliani had a passion for music and was known for performing at school and community events. He was also interested in poetry, which he later incorporated into his music. Despite facing financial challenges, Juliani’s parents encouraged him to pursue his dreams, and they played a significant role in shaping his worldview and values.
Juliani Education background
Julius Owino attended high school at St. Paul’s Secondary School in Nairobi, Kenya. After completing high school, he pursued a degree in Computer Science at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT). However, he dropped out to focus on his music career.
Despite dropping out of university, Juliani is known for his deep knowledge and interest in social issues, and he has continued to educate himself on various topics through reading, research, and engagement with experts in different fields. He is also known for his poetry and lyrical prowess, which reflect his deep understanding of social, political, and economic issues affecting Kenya and Africa.
Juliani Music career
Juliani started his music career in 2004. He quickly rose to fame with his unique style that combined hip-hop, reggae, and African rhythms. He released his debut album “Mtaa Mentality” in 2006, which featured hit songs such as “Utawala” and “Wakenya.” The album received critical acclaim and established Juliani as a force to be reckoned with in the Kenyan music industry.
Over the years, Juliani has released several albums, including “Exponential Potential” (2010), “Pulpit Kwa Street” (2014), and “Masterpiece” (2017). His music has won him numerous awards and nominations. These included the Kisima Music Award for Best Hip-Hop Artist in 2008 and 2009. Additionally, he won the Groove Award for Male Artist of the Year in 2014.
Apart from his music career, Juliani is also a social activist who is passionate about using his platform to effect change in society. He has been involved in various initiatives aimed at improving the lives of Kenyans, particularly those from underprivileged backgrounds. In 2015, he founded Dandora Hip-Hop City, an organization that aims to empower young people in the Dandora slum through music and the arts.
Juliani has also been involved in campaigns aimed at promoting peace and political tolerance in Kenya. In 2017, he joined a group of artists and activists in launching the “Wakenya Pamoja” campaign, which aimed to promote unity and social cohesion ahead of the general election.
In recognition of his contributions to society, Juliani has received several awards and honors, including the Order of the Grand Warrior (OGW) award in 2016, which is one of the highest civilian honors in Kenya.
Juliani’s music and activism continue to inspire many young people in Kenya and beyond, and he remains one of the most respected and influential musicians in East Africa.
Juliani has been involved in several controversies throughout his career, mostly related to his activism and political views. Here are a few notable ones:
- In 2017, Juliani was part of a group of artists and activists who launched the “Wakenya Pamoja” campaign, aimed at promoting peace and political tolerance ahead of the general election in Kenya. The campaign was criticized by some politicians, who accused the group of being partisan and supporting a particular political party.
- In 2019, Juliani was arrested during a protest against the demolition of houses in Kariobangi, Nairobi. He was released on bail and continued to speak out against the government’s handling of the issue. This sparked a national conversation about housing rights in Kenya.
- Juliani has been vocal about corruption in Kenya. He called out several politicians and government officials accused of engaging in corrupt activities. His activism has earned him both admiration and criticism, with some accusing him of being too political and divisive.
Despite these controversies, Juliani remains a respected and influential figure in Kenya. He is known for his commitment to social justice, activism, and music.