All the way from J-Town (Jos) to Lasgidi mainstream, Jude Abaga is regarded by many as the “Chairman” of rap in Africa. Jude “M.I” Abaga has done a great job for himself since coming to Lagos from Jos. He’s presently the CEO of Chocolate City Record Label and a mega ambassador for Globacom. His album “Chairman” is also one of the highest selling albums in Nigeria.
The self-acclaimed “area father” of Bayelsa has been dropping hit singles and a few albums since his rise to fame in 2011. Those who have followed his story since then would appreciate the effort he puts in his every song he drops. Asides the music, he’s also a shrewd businessman whose major investment is in the real estate sector. He also is the CEO of “Dem Mama Records” or DMR if you like.
13. TIWA SAVAGE
Popularly called “Oga Madam” Tiwa Savage is arguably the biggest female artiste in Africa (she even said so herself). She’s an ambassador for various huge brands like Huggies, MTN, and Pepsi. Her recent marital storm hasn’t reduced the speed of her career’s ship as she just signed a mouthwatering deal with Jay Z’s Roc Nation. The energetic vocalist is one of the musicians keeping African music on the global scene.
He’s arguably the most popular artiste in Nigeria presently and one of the richest. He has mega deals with Guiness and Etisalat, and he’s also the CEO of YBNL records. He’s songs are always a hit; back-to-back and he’s known to be about helping up-coming musicians grow into limelight. He’s reported to own two houses and a filling station at Bariga, Lagos where he group up, although he ‘denies’ the claims.
15. PASUMA WONDER
Versatility is what works for star man Wasiu Alabi Pasuma. He hails from Mushin, Lagos and is held in very high regard on the ‘streets’. His Fuji music is second to none, and his recent diversification into hip-hop hasn’t been a flop. He’s really an “Oganla” (big boss) in the music scene, since his latest album – Game Changer is his 36th. Not many other Nigerian artistes can beat that record.
The 5 star music lead artiste has done a good in job in staying relevant since his split from his partner (Presh) in 2011. He’s a peace ambassador, an MTN ambassador and he has a sponsorship deal with Magnum. He has released various hits and club bangers and he’s not showing any signs of fading off anytime soon.
His “Father Father” and “Connect” song is still rocked the airwaves both in the south west and south east. He’s one of those who even though you don’t understand what he’s singing, you can still totally flow along with it. Phyno is an ambassador for giant brands like Guinness, Airtel and he’s also a brand ambassador for Nairabet. He came to limelight for his ‘Ghost Mode’ collaboration with Olamide in 2013 and as the West have Olamide, so does the East have Phyno.
18. DUNCAN MIGHTY
He’s probably the most popular Port Hacourt boy. Although he isn’t as active as he once used to be, he still over 3 million views on YouTube, which is more than some other musicians have. He is reportedly in strong affiliations with Niger-Delta politicians but whenever he strolls into the studio, he comes out with something nice.
19. KING SUNNY ADE
If you have never heard his name, then you should be exiled from Nigeria. King Sunny Ade (Sunday Adeniyi) has been actively making the good stuff since the early sixties. He’s a Glo ambassador, and he’s known as the Minister for Enjoyment. Some of his songs have fallen into the ‘evergreen’ category, as they’re still being played today. At 70, he’s rightly considered by many to be one of the finest Nigeria has offered Nigerians when it comes to music. If the fame KSA’s had in his prime were to be in the 21st century, he would have probably been the richest musician in Nigeria.
20. ICE PRINCE
His Skye Bank deal is said to be worth millions of naira and he’s not just a musician but a businessman. Ice Prince Zamani is one of the finest in the Nigerian music scene, and his “Oleku” video has over 3 million views on YouTube. He’s signed to Chocolate City record label alongside Jesse Jags, Nosa and new signee Koker.