From Grass to Grace; the Amazing Tale of Bobi Wine


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Irrespective of whether or not you are an aficionado of inspirational accounts, you’ll find Bobi Wine’s story hard to resist. His is a clear exemplification of the fact that if he works hard enough and believes enough, man can change his stars, no matter what.

From an emblematic slum inhabitant that writhed to attain life’s most basic needs, Bobi Wine is now a celebrated singer, entrepreneur, part time actor, husband and father. Yet all that did not come on a silver platter.

Born on the 12th of February in 1982 in Mpigi District, Bobi Wine was christened Robert Kyagulanyi and together with his nine siblings, raised in Kamwokya, probably one of the most popular slums in Kampala. 

From such a young age, it was an obvious thing that Bobi Wine always coupled his love for music with his business mind.  It is therefore no wonder that while in school, Bobi used to throw shows for classmates at a cost of fifty shillings each. Unlike most shows, these were powered by a walk man, a borrowed amplifier and speaker!

Many people think Kagoma was Bobi’s first song, yet by the end of his 'O' level he had composed many songs but had no money to record them. In '98 after his 'A' level, Bobi Wine managed to record some tracks; Kalyonso, Doreen and Namulembe which did not sprout out in the industry.   

Nothing was to break this man’s spirit, who at this point was vending grasshoppers in his vacation. In 2000, while in his first year at Makerere University, Bobi outed “Abakyaala”. This too was not a popular song, but an indicator that he was on a steady path to growth.

Even when at Makerere, the business man in Bobi kept pushing on as he made mud bricks during his free time. He also did painting, while he was a porter at a building site.

"I wasn't afraid of my friends disrespecting me because they understood my situation. Besides I am not after giving a false impression of myself so I could go work and perform at occasions like Karaoke in nightspots around the city.” remembers Bobi Wine.

But his real breakthrough was when he got thirty minutes to record “Akagoma" at Kasiiwukila. 

Bobi Wine seized thirty minutes and used them to change his life. This is an indicator that luck is opportunity presented to a prepared person.

After “Akagoma”, the rest is history! He has since had albums like ‘Kagoma, Namulime, Wendi, Bada, Kiwani Mazimawanvu to mention but a few. He has done an array of songs, hit after hit that mentioning them would take all day. He has traveled the world and won awards, the recent for example HiPipo Music Awards (HMA) Best Afrobeat Song, Jenifer, to mention but a few.

A holder of a bachelor’s degree in music, dance and drama from Makerere University, Bobi Wine is one of Uganda’s richest artistes. Although his net worth figures are not available, he owns a plush residence, one love beach, Semakokiro plaza, an array of luxury cars and a yacht.

This proud husband and father is not a product of luck, but hard work and focus. He knew exactly what he wanted in life and when opportunity arose, he knew exactly how to use it!

What do you think about Bobi Wine, share your views in the comments section below!!