Caesar Sant is a four-year-old child prodigy with a gift for playing the violin.
- Posted on Sep 28th 2011 5:00PM by Jason MacNeil
On Sept. 22, K'Naan -- who's campaigning to raise awareness of the devastating famine in homeland of Somalia -- took part in the Clinton Global Citizens Awards ceremony in New York City, where he performed 'Take a Minute' and shared the stage with Clinton who spearheads the annual meeting of global leaders trying to create solutions to the world's biggest challenges.
"I said we were just going to have fun tonight but when I saw the film and I heard him singing and I heard what he said, I felt like a schmuck," Clinton said to the audience before passing the microphone to K'Naan. "I had to ask you to do more."
"It's a good moment to be in service of people and I don't know what better life really to lead than to lead that life which is in service of others," K'Naan said.
On Sept. 25, the New York Times published an opinion piece K'Naan wrote entitled 'Returning to Somalia After 20 Years.' In it, the hip-hop star, who was raised in Canada, described his return visit to his hometown of Mogadishu to see the suffering firsthand in displacement camps and in the Bandair Hospital.
"I hoped that my presence would let me shine a light into this darkness," he wrote. "Maybe spare even one life, a life equal to mine, from indifferently wasting away. But I am now statesman, nor a soldier. Just a man made fortunate by the power of the spotlight. And to save someone's life I am willing to spend some of that capricious currency called celebrity."
The article and appearance at Clinton's event are the latest in a string of activities by K'Naan to further the cause of famine relief in his homeland. In late July, the rapper met with Bono in Minneapolis -- home to one of the largest Somali populations outside the African nation -- to address how Bono's ONE anti-poverty charity could assist ongoing relief efforts. Bono acknowledged K'Naan's efforts by bringing him onstage to perform a cover of Ben E. King's 'Stand By Me' while describing him as a "very special spirit" and "wise man."
But it didn't stop there. An ensuing CNN report by Anderson Cooper featuring both musicians revealed more information about the dire situation and possible solutions. And the duo joined forces again during the Toronto International Film Festival in early September for an exclusive roundtable discussion on the crisis with some of Canada's business elite, among others, listening.
It's quite something for a "dusty foot philosopher" to draw so much attention but expect K'Naan to continue his efforts. Meanwhile, he'll perform at Toronto's Massey Hall on Oct. 1 with Bedouin Soundclash as part of Canada's Walk of Fame Festival.