Listen to Roma Mkatoliki – Tupeni Chetu (Audio)
Who really is ROMA?
Ibrahimu Mussa popularly known as ROMA, was born in Tanga region of the United Republic of Tanzania. He is the last-born from a Muslim family of five children. Currently he is best know by his stage name R.O.M.A, artist of new generation music in Tanzania. A large part of Roma’s popularity is due to his songs that contain content to criticize the government for what he sees as being wrong and that makes him an activist. This name R.O.M.A according to himself is a combination of the names of his siblings with whom he was born, namely Rashid, Omari, Maimuna, and Asha. His name also means Rhymes of Magic Attraction. Date 12. 9. 2002 Roma experienced the loss of his biological father due to a long illness.
After the death of his father, Roma immersed himself more in the basketball game he loved, which he has been playing since he was young, just to reduce the sadness he had in his heart, and this talent is one of the things that Roma prefers to do when he is out of music, as he is currently the coach of the team he played for in the early 2000s.
He officially entered the music industry in 2006 when he was in the sixth form in Tanga region. But he began to be known in the ears of Tanzanians in 2008 when he sang a song called Tanzania and touched the feelings of many Tanzanians due to touching on the challenges in the government and criticizing the government in the lines of this song.
After completing his primary education, Roma went to study at Usagara secondary school for four years, he was chosen to go to Old Moshi secondary school, and then the activism that grew in him became evident after he and some of his friends were expelled from school due to managing their positions which did not match the school’s requirements.
As a result of the incident, he had to return to Usagara secondary school where he studied for the previous four years and he continued his studies until he finished secondary education.
This is where for the first time he had the chance to meet Clouds FM station announcer, Hamis Mandi popularly known as B’12. B12 had come to a concert in Tanga and was getting ready to leave when Roma ran away from school to give him a CD with his song called salute and managed to meet him in the bus when it had already left and after handing him his CD he went down from where he was studying but all that was so that he could fulfill his dreams. When he finished secondary school, he went to teach at Manza High secondary school. Ibrahim Mussa is also an academic with a degree in computer science.
A musical journey
Roma, who is known for wearing rosali, says that in 2007 he decided to make music after being impressed by Professor J.
Where he recorded his first song called Salute in Mr Ebo’s studio known as motika records, a song that did well on radio stations in Tanga region.
In 2008, he released a song known as Tanzania, a song that put him on the Tanzanian music map, after his position became clear to Tanzanians, his next songs such as President, and Viva did well enough to touch the Tanzanian art council.
He says his song called Pastor, is the one that gave him the most problems after it appeared to be religious and preferred the Roman Catholic sect due to the line that says, “All religions will come but RC will remain.” Many radio stations stopped playing the song and it only lasted for four months.
The song “Mathematics” is what made him famous twice after he won two Kili awards, the best Hip hop musician of the year 2011 and the best Hip Hop song of the year 2011.
Things to learn.
1. Roma had dreams of playing professional basketball, he grew up dreaming of becoming a pilot, dreams of being a musician and many other dreams since he was young, but he ended up doing what he loved the most, that is singing. It is better to do something that you enjoy doing so that it brings you income, instead of doing a job that every day when you wake up you wish you were doing something else.
2. Roma has become an activist who criticizes the government and thus is associated with the opposition party Chadema. A situation that has divided his fans and reduced the effectiveness of reaching his audience. It is often better not to get involved in politics if you want to reach a large audience or many customers because there are people who will hate you just because you belong to a certain party. It is good to make party ideologies a personal matter.
3. Despite not having a father’s upbringing during a difficult time in his life, Ibrahimu Mussa did not drop out of school, despite being talented and confident in what he was doing, he still went to study computer science which could be of great help to him when he decides doing different activities than what he is doing right now. This situation gives him a wide range of choices on where to put his money-making pipes.
4. Roma is known as a man of the people, at home in Tanga, Dar es Salaam and Tanzania in general, that’s why a big campaign has been held all over the country.
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