Reggie Rockstone, Hiplife Grand Papa and hip hop godfather

Estimated read time 3 min read

Today on Celebrity Trails, we point our lights on the life of one of Ghana’s celebrated music icons and a pioneer of the Hiplife genre, Reggie Rockstone. Born Reginald Yaw Asante Osei in the United Kingdom, Reggie Rockstone, also known as the Hiplife Grand Papa grew up partly in Ghana.

Reggie Rockstone started attaching himself to Hip Hop early in the 1980s but not as a rapper, he did as a dancer. He only started rapping early in the last decade of the 20th century. He joined the London-based rap group Parables, Linguistics and Zlang (PLZ) which had Fredi Funkstone, Jay and DJ Pogo. The group released their first hit single “If It Aint PLZ” in 1992. Then followed the Extended Playlist (EP) “Build a Wall Around Your Dreams” which they released under an independent label known as “Go For the Juggler”.

After returning to Ghana in 1994, Reggie Rockstone used the Hip Hop beats and added Ghanaian dialect to it which created the new genre Hiplife. His debut album “Makaa Maka” contained hit songs including “Agoo”, “Sweetie, Sweetie”, “Tsoo Boi” and “Nightlife in Accra”. The new genre has since then been touted as majorly a creation of Reggie Rockstone. That is sometimes debated among many Ghanaians due to the fact that Ghanaian Hip Hop can be traced back to the years predating the 1990s when Reggie shot into the limelight. K.K. Kabobo and Gyedu Blay Ambolley have been said to have done some form of Hip Hop in the 1980s prior to the time of Reggie Rockstone.

Aside from his maiden hit album, the Hiplife Grand Papa also released other albums including “Me Na Me Kae”, “Me Ka”, “Last Show” and “Reggiestration”. His songs such as “Eye mo de anaa”, “Medicine”, “Plan Ben?” and “Mensesa” were very popular when they were released.

In terms of working with other industry players, Reggie Rockstone has worked with top musicians such as Samini, KK Fosu, Sarkodie, Stonebwoy, D-Black, Kwaw Kese, Efya, Trigmatic, Tic Tac, Jayso, M.anifest and Sena Dagadu among others.

VVIP and Reggie Rockstone

Later in the career of the rap godfather, he teamed up with the hiplife group VIP after Promzy left the group in 2013 and the new group was named VVIP. The group produced songs such as “Skolom”, “Dogo Yaro”, “Selfie”, “Hustle”, “The Book of Life” and “Alhaji” which all performed very well. As VVIP, the group won Best Group of the Year (Vodafone Ghana Music Awards) and Best Group of the Year (AFRIMA) in 2016 among a host of other awards.

Outside Music

Reggie Rockstone is an entrepreneur so outside music he is into business and that includes the formation of Kassa Records which he partly owns. He also is the owner of Rockz Waakye which delivers waakye packaged in glass jars to hotels in Accra. Reggie Rockstone also launched the Rockstone condoms in 2013 which was aimed at helping to reduce HIV/AIDS infection in the country.

Personal Life

Reggie Rockstone is married to Dr Zilla Limann, the daughter of Ghana’s third President Dr Hilla Limann. The couple are blessed with four children.

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