Nigeria music artists dominate the entertainment industry in Africa. Nigerian music, drama, and movies are a favorite of many in Africa and around the world. There are many Nigerian music artists taking the Nigerian music industry by storm. Some are quite young and this is very encouraging to aspiring and upcoming musicians in Africa.
In our music artist spotlight today, we feature the ten successful Nigerian musicians that have dominated the music industry in their country this year. Some musicians from Nigeria are even competing in the international scene. The commonality between these musicians is that they all have won several awards.
10 Elite Nigeria Music Artists you should Know
Wizkid takes the first slot in our list of successful Nigeria music artists. His debut album, “Superstar,” made him very popular. This album made him win “The Best Album” during Nigeria Entertainment Awards. After this award, the Nigerian Afrobeats singer has continued to produce great music.
He went on to win 65 awards, making him a music legend. Wizkid has taken after Fela Kuti and has contributed a lot to the African Sounds Global Acceptance (Afro-beats). The star’s album “Sound from the Other Side” (SFTOS) and “Made in Lagos” have been rated number 2in US World Albums. At the same time, they have been in good positions in other foreign billboards charts.
Wizkid is said to be the most awarded African artist in BET awards history, after winning awards in 2012 and 2017. Then, when he collaborated with the legendary Beyonce in the ‘Brown Skin Girl’ track in 2020, he received yet another award from BET.
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This Nigeria music artist has proved that being from a wealthy family is no excuse for laziness. Born in a billionaire family, Davido has worked very hard to become one of the 10 most successful musicians in Nigeria. He moved to Lagos after abandoning school to pursue music.
He gained popularity in 2012 after releasing his second single, “Dami Duro” from his first album, “Omo Baba Olowo.” Davido also received The Headies Award in the same year. Davido’s hit single, “Fall” became the longest chatting Nigerian pop song in Billboard History. He likes engaging his fans on social media.
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3. Burna Boy
Burna Boy is another Nigerian star specializing in Afro-fusion. This genre blends Afro-beats, dance hall riddims, American rap, reggae, and R&B. In 2021, Burna Boy won the Grammy Awards through his Twice as Tall album.
After dropping his hit single, “Like To Party” in 2012, he became famous. Then, at the 2019 BET Awards, he won the Best International Act. He was also nominated for Best Music Album for his studio album, “The African Giant,” at the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards, although he did not win.
However, he won the award for the same category during the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards after being nominated. That made him the first Nigerian music artist to be nominated back to back in the Grammy Awards. In total, Burna Boy has garnered 36 music awards, making him one of the most successful Nigeria music artists.
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Also known as Baddo or Baddosneh, Olamide was the very first Nigerian to sign an endorsement deal with the Ciroc. He is a hip-hop genre singer. His real name is Olamide Gbenga Adedeji. Born in 1989, this Nigeria music artist records his songs in the English and Yoruba languages.
Olamide’s lead single, “Omo To Shan” from the first album, “Rapsodi” was released in 2011. It made him famous. By then, he was signed to Coded Tunes. His follow-up album was YBNL, released under his label imprint, YBNL Nation. His singles “stupid Love,” “First of All,” and, “Illuminati” have made him very popular. He has won over 22 awards.
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D’banj’s real name is Oladapo Daniel Oyebanjo. People also know him by the mane, Koko Master. This award-winning Nigerian Pop sensation was born in 1980. He is a musician, a singer, a songwriter, a rapper, an entrepreneur, and a lawyer. He is also a television personality.
It was while working as a security guard in a UK studio, where Don Jazzy was also working, that Don Jazzy saw his talent. Once the duo returned to Nigeria in 2005, they produced a single, “Tongolo,” together. In 2012, D’banj’s got international recognition after releasing his hit single, “Oliver Twist.”
He has won both local and international awards. D’banj is also the founder of the Koko Foundation for Youth and Peace Development. He has done a song in support of agriculture investment. The song featured 18 other African artists and won the Best African Collaboration award in 2014 at the All Africa Music Awards.
6. Dice Ailes
Dice’s real name is Shasha Damilola Alesh. He is a songwriter, rapper, and singer. Dice Ailes was born in 1996. He started singing in a church choir. For his career, he chose pop, Afro-pop, and Afro hip-hop. In July 2014, Alesh signed a record deal with Chocolate City. In 2016, he got nominated for “Rookie of the Year” at the Headies.
Besides, Dice has done a hit track with Naija’s latest Singer, Rosy Prince. He has also shared the stage with WSTN, Krept and Konan, Migos, and Lil Kesh. Also, his hit song, “Femi Otedola,” got him close to businessman Otedola and his family, though, he says that was not his initial intention.
7. Lil Kesh
Kenshiro Ololade aka Lil Kesh is a young Nigerian rapper. He is also a songwriter. Also, he is the youngest record label executive in Nigeria, the leader of Yagi Records. When he released his hit single, “Shoki,” he rose to fame.
In Africa, he is one of the biggest and most influential artists. The young music artist from Nigeria abandoned his studies at the University of Ibadan to concentrate on music. It was after he rapped among his colleagues in Bariga in 2012 that he started his music career.
Then, he released his single, “lyrically,” which became quite popular in Nigerian universities. After this, in 2015, he was nominated for “Best New Act” at the 2015 Nigeria Entertainment Awards.
8. Korede Bello
Born in 1996, this successful Nigerian music artist is both a singer and a songwriter. “Godwin,” his hit single made him quite popular. “The song is both semi-gospel and pop. Since its release, it has become a national anthem in Nigeria and that is one of the songs that have made him one of the popular Nigeria music artists.
Korede Bello uses his real name as his stage name. He specializes in blues, R&B, afro-beats, hip-hop, and pop music. At 7 years old, he had already started performing. His stage name was African Prince at the time. Bello’s first single was, “Forever,” which he released while he was in secondary school.
The young music star got signed by Don Jazzy. In 2014, he got signed by Marvin Records. He went on to record popular songs like, “African Princess,” and “God Win.” This young Nigerian musician has toured Africa, Europe, and America. He is now working on his first studio album.
9. Reekado Banks
Reekado Banks is one of the successful Nigerian music artists. This 27-year-old is an Afro-pop singer, and songwriter. Banks, whose real name is Ayoleyi Hanniel Solomon started his music career in 2008. The young artist has worn awards like, “Rookie of the Year,” and “Next Rated.”
He has been releasing songs that top the charts since his debut. Several of these are collaborations, some with local and others with international artists. Between 2014 and 2018, Reekado Banks worked with Marvin Records. Before then, his stage name was Spicy.
Coming from a music-loving family, Reekado had his first set of songs produced by his elder brother who is a producer. This brother also tutored him in writing, singing, and producing music.
He also signed him with Marvin Records. Banks’ first official single under Marvin Records is,” Turn It Up.” It was premiered on 21st February 2014. This Nigerian singer is also known to charge high fees for appearances and performances.
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10. Kiss Daniel
Oluwatobilob Daniel Anidugbe alias Kiss Daniel came into the music industry with a bang. His very first single, “Woju,” was quite a hit. His single, “Yeba,” also contributed to his popularity. After the great experience of dropping a debut single, the 1994-born Nigerian artist became unstoppable. He has dropped hit after hit, and then crowned them with winning an award with his debut album, “New Era.”
Kiss Daniel, as young as he is, has a string of awards. At the Headies Awards in 2016, he took home three awards. One of them was for the Album of the Year. Currently, this Nigerian music artist is a record company boss of his music firm, Fly Boi Inc. This star is a singer, a songwriter, and an entertainer.
Nigeria continues to transform the African music scene. Different music genres continue to evolve from Nigeria, from hip-hop and reggae to Afro-fusion, Afro-beats, and Afro-pop. These Nigeria music artists will continue to sate the music industry in Nigeria in the coming years.
Some of these popular Nigerian musicians do charity works. Overall, Nigerian music is one of those you would want to listen to because it is very entertaining. Who is your favorite musician from Nigeria?