Yemi Alade is often referred to as ‘Mama Africa’. This is because of her afro-centrism and pan-African musical appeal. One of her most popular hit single titled ‘Johnny’ has amassed more than 110 million views on YouTube. She is also the first African female act to have one million subscribers on YouTube. While Yemi Alade might not be as appreciated in Nigeria, she is very much an internationally acclaimed artist and her numbers are impressive.
She was named Best African Female Artist at the MTV Africa Music Awards. She also has four albums that have endeared her to the francophone and lusophone countries of Africa.
Tiwa Savage was born in Nigeria but grew up in the United Kingdom. She spent part of her life in the United States of America where she wrote songs for acts such as Fantasia Barrino, Mya, and some others. She came back to Nigeria and became a hit with her first two singles, ‘Kele Kele’ and ‘Love Me 3X’ which was released in 2010.
A while after she came back, she got signed to MAVIN Records where she released her debut album, titled Once Upon A Time and another, R.E.D in 2015. Both albums were critically acclaimed. This is when the awards and recognition started pouring in. Tiwa Savage also had lots of sold-out shows in western and European locations, followed by a spike in YouTube views, as well as major international award recognition.
In 2018, she was named the Best African Act at the MTV European Music Awards. She also signed a major record deal with Universal Music Group later in 2019. Tiwa Savage has made a name for herself in Nigeria, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America.
Sinach is a Gospel singer and if you must know, gospel music is the biggest and highest-selling genre of music in Nigeria. Gospel music remains unmatched in these parts. The biggest cross-over Nigerian song of the past 20 years is a gospel song. The song. ‘way maker’ belongs to Sinach and it is titled, ‘Way Maker.’ Waymaker is performed everywhere across the world. It was even performed at Kanye West’s Sunday Service. Sinach is recognized both at home and abroad. For every show she is invited to, Sinach will only come for $50,000. While she might not be a star in your most preferred genre, her musical success in her chosen field is a big feat. Sinach remains one of Nigeria’s biggest female artists of the decade.
The turn of the decade coincided with a release from the music legend, 2 Baba with the original Unstoppable album. The album was named Album of the year at the 2011 Headies. It also won the Best International Act at the BET Awards. At the 2010 African Music Awards, he was also named Best male artist as well as the artist of the year. In 2012, he released another album, Away and Beyond, which is often referred to as his best album. In 2017, he had another hit in ‘Holy Holy‘ and ‘Gaaga Shuffle.’ In 2018, ‘Amaka’ was a hit, featuring Peruzzi. 2 Baba is one of Nigerian’s musical legends.
Burna boy’s musical career can be traced to 2013 when he released his debut album, L.I.F.E. The album had some hit songs such as ‘Like to Party’ and ‘Tonight.’ It also followed his 2010 and 2011 mixtapes. Now, Burna boy is referred to as African Giant but he always like this. In 2013, he lost the Next Rated award to Sean Tizzle at the Headies. In 2015, Burna Boy released his sophomore album, ‘On A Spaceship’ which was a great one but just did not make the mark. Burna Boy’s talent has always been recognized, but he has also had to deal with distractions and controversies. People also love Burna boy because of the natural synergy he has with his music. His song ‘Ye’ became an African obsession which brought him recognition in the United Kingdom and then the United States. Burna Boy has released two more hits in ‘Gbona’, ‘On The Low’, and ‘Killin Dem’. In 2019, Burna boy was named alongside Mr. Eazi as one of two Nigerian acts to perform at Coachella 2019. He also runs an African Giant tour as he has become the face and poster boy of Afrobeats.
P square is a twin and both of them are musical legends in Nigeria. At the 2012 Headies, P Square‘s Invasion was named Album of the Year. As at this time, P Square was undisputed as the biggest act in Africa. They were strategic with their music and appealed to different markets, this matched with their incredible performances.
One of their songs, ‘Beautiful Onyinye’ got a remix with Rick Ross, one of the greatest rappers at the time. The duo might not be together anymore but their legend is sealed. Some even argue that ‘Onyinye’ started the culture of ‘wedding music’ in Nigeria.
Davido is that musician who no one really expected to last this long but did. He has become a superstar with major awards, endorsements and at one time was a poster boy of afrobeat. His life is truly a lesson on perseverance and hard work.
He has also birthed a successful record label. His first major hit was ‘Dami Duro’ which he released in 2010. In 2012, he released his debut album, Omo Baba Olowo. That same year, Davido was named Next Rated Act at the Headies.
He has had major collaborations with the likes of Runtown and Uhuru. In 2015, Davido began to go international. He recorded a song ‘Fans Mi,’ with Meek Mill. He also released ‘Blow my mind’ with Chris Brown in 2019.
Olamide is arguably the most important figure in Nigerian Hip-Hop and rap music industry. He has set the marks with his sound, style, and delivery. He has won album of the year awards three times at the Headies and has also been named Artist of the year once. Ever since he began in 2010, Olamide has had at least three hits to his name. While Olamide has not been able to successfully get into the western markets like his peers, in Nigeria, he remains one of the very best.
Wizkid’s musical career can be traced to January 2010, where he released his hit single, ‘Holla at Your Boy’. In 2011, he was named Next Rated Artiste at the Headies. In 2012, he won the awards for both Artist of the Year and Revelation of the Year. Wizkid’s hit song ‘Ojuelegba’ had a remix from Canadian rapper ‘Drake’ and Skepta. In 2016. Wizkid scored a global chart-topper titled, ‘One Dance’ and it spent more than 11 weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. Wizkid has also had incredible features in international acts such as Beyonce’s ‘Brown Skin girl”