Bataka Squad (formerly Bataka Underground) is a pioneering Ugandan hip hop. The group was formed by Babaluku (a.k.a. Sniperous MC), Saba Saba aka Krazy Native and Big Poppa Momo MC. Founded in the mid-1990s, it is one of the earliest hip hop groups in Uganda.
The other prominent long living Hip Hop groups include Abenganda Clan founded by Mulekwa Nampeera, and Rokym Mukunja (RIP) plus Young Vybz.
Bataka Squad was later joined by Newton now in L.A, La raat now in London, UK, Lyrical G who later joined Urban Thugs and eventually went solo. Chagga who left and joined Chameleone as a background vocalist. Then came Shillingz who was known for his tongue twisting and now based in Toronto, Canada. Then came “Farious” a Burundian born who also returned home. Currently, Saba Saba, Babaluku and new member Tshila are holding it down as Bataka Squad.
The word ‘Bataka’ means natives. Members wanted people to understand their background. The three founders were born and raised in Kampala, Uganda. The term Underground was meant to imply simply “Not Commercial”. Bataka Underground began with the intention of letting Ugandans know that they are living in a new age.
In 2006, the group performed at the inaugural Trinity International Hip Hop Festival in Hartford, United States.
The group is also the subject of the Diamonds in the Rough: A Ugandan Hip Hop Revolution documentary.
In August 2005, Babaluku from Canada journeyed back to Uganda to link up with Krazy Native, and filmed “Diamonds in the Rough” with Dj 3rdi. This film documentary about Bataka Squad and other hip-hop artists has sparked a lot of interest among Ugandan Hip-Hop fans. It portrayed the fact that Bataka Squad are out to effect change in the community, not just through their words, but through deeds and actions that give back to the community. During the filming of this documentary, they linked up with Female Mc, Tshila, who grounded in the roots of African music, contributed to their album “The Revolution”, which was recorded later that year.
The Album, The Revolution, is representative of what Bataka Squad stand for! Sparking a movement of positive change in Africa, not just through words, but deeds.
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