Born and raised in Philadelphia, Nkosi H. Newkirk has always dreamed of being an entertainer since he was a child. Growing up in an Afrocentric household Nkosi was exposed to African culture at a very young age. Raised by a mother who was an African dancer and a jazz-fusion band manager, and a late father who was an African drummer, music was a regular part of his life. Attending Afrocentric schools like the now-closed Wakisha Charter and Imhotep Institute Charter High School furthered his cultural understanding. He became more invested in African drum and dance in his sophomore year at Imhotep, where he met his current teacher, Baba Ira Bond. Through Baba Ira’s teachings, Nkosi found another outlet for his musical hunger, formed a fond love for the music and culture, and a strong brotherhood with his fellow drummers. The lessons learned under his tutelage not only taught Nkosi about his heritage and the instrument but also how to be comfortable with who you are and how to express yourself.
Nkosi has also been involved in other musical ventures outside of African drumming. With being a member of his high school’s drumline, with fellow drummer Jabari Tate and rhythm guitar in the school’s house band with fellow drummer Hassan King. Along with African drums and guitar, he also has started learning the piano. With a massive love for hip-hop, African, jazz, R&B, pop and rock music, Nkosi is currently attending the Art Institute of Philadephia for audio engineering to get educated on the more technical side of music, in hopes of being able to produce, record, and release his own independent musical projects.