Thursday, 16 August 2012


Rapper Knaan will give y'all a gate pass to what his past was like, growing up in war torn Somalia.
The Wavin Flag star and illustrator Rudy Gutierrez have worked on an autobio on Knaan dubbed When I Get Older: The Story Behind Wavin Flag.
Born in Somalia, K'naan moved with his family, first to New York and then to Toronto, to escape the outbreak of the 1991 Somali Civil War.  The book details the challenges K'naan faced adjusting to life in a new country and how music became a way for him to connect with his past, with his classmates, and eventually with millions of people around the world.  At 32 pages, the full-colour, illustrated picture book will include a brief history of the Somalian conflict and the lyrics and sheet music of "Wavin' Flag," K'naan's #1 hit song.
Of the book K'naan says, "I think of empathy as a muscle in the soul, which develops through the nutrition we provide for it. The stories we hear as children can be that nutrition.  I wanted to write a children's story that reflects the new immigrant's sense of family and identity, which can sometimes be lost in translation.  In this book, the main character is "Wavin' Flag," a song whose ownership has been long claimed by children all over the world."

Alison Morgan, Publisher, Tundra Books, says, "We are thrilled to be publishing this wonderful, inspirational story - one that acknowledges the horrible circumstances that force many refugees to flee their homeland, while celebrating the bright future within every child's grasp.  K'naan's story is especially meaningful to those confronted with the huge challenge of fitting into a new country, with strange customs and an unfamiliar language.  K'naan continues to work to support those marginalized by poverty and violence in his native Somalia and to help those struggling to find their way in new lands."