Dr Chaii Biography: Early Life in Zimbabwe | Education | Music Career | International Collabos
Dr Chaii is a Grammy-nominated record producer, songwriter and singer from Harare, Zimbabwe. He has co-produced and co-written for many famous artists such as Jason Derulo, Sean Paul, Pitbull, Chris Brown, Camila Cabello, Dua Lipa, French Montana and others. He is also a solo artist and a member of the Afro-fusion group Bantu.
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Dr Chaii Early Life and Education
Dr Chaii was born Philip Kembo in Harare, Zimbabwe. He grew up in a musical family and started playing the piano at six. He attended St George’s College in Harare and later moved to the United States to study music production at Berklee College of Music in Boston.
Dr Chaii Music Career
Dr Chaii began his career as a producer and songwriter in Los Angeles, working with various artists and labels. He got his breakthrough in 2017 when he co-produced and co-wrote Jason Derulo’s hit single “Tip Toe” featuring French Montana. The song reached number five on the UK Singles Chart and was certified platinum in several countries.
Since then, Dr Chaii has collaborated with many other artists such as Pitbull, Fifth Harmony, J Balvin, Camila Cabello, Trey Songz, Sean Paul, Dua Lipa, Alex Aiono, Becky G, Digital Farm Animals, Ice Prince, DaniLeigh, Bipolar Sunshine, Jack Gilinsky, iann dior, Kida Kudz and Big Tobz. He also produced Chris Brown’s 2017 hit “Questions”.
Dr Chaii has also released his solo music, such as “Bongo”, “If You Love Me”, “MC Hammer”, “Jackie Chan” with Bantu and “Enjoyment Only”. His music was also featured on the FIFA 19 FIFA 21 soundtracks
Another project that Dr Chaii was involved in was collaborating with Winky D, a popular Zimbabwean dancehall artist. Dr Chaii produced and featured on the song “Mu Spirit”, released in 2023. The song is a fusion of dancehall and Afrobeat, with catchy lyrics and a vibrant beat. The song received positive reviews from fans and critics and was accompanied by a dance video by Team Expandables.
Dr Chaii Awards Nominations
Dr Chaii has been nominated for several awards for his work as a producer and songwriter. He was nominated for a Grammy Award in 2019 for Best Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album for his work on J Balvin’s album Vibras. He was also nominated for an MTV Video Music Award in 2018 for Best Latin Video for his work on Pitbull and J Balvin’s song “Hey Ma” featuring Camila Cabello.
In 2023, Dr Chaii won the Best Diaspora gong at the Zimbabwe Music Awards, his first Zimbabwean award.
Dr Chaii is based in Los Angeles, California. His parents, Freeman and Naomi, are based in Zimbabwe.