13 January 2013

Nigeria: Artists to Watch Out for in 2013

Photo: Leadership
Nigerian rising stars

The entertainment industry in 2012 unveiled a lot of new acts who showed lots of promise but in this piece by SAMUEL ABULUDE and KAZEEM YEKEEN, they beam the lens on some artistes to watch out for In 2013.


Alternative soul artist, Bez will consolidate in 2013 on the success of his album which received commendations both at home and abroad. His single, 'That Stupid Song' entered in the Top 20 songs in Boston Globe last December. He was also the first Nigerian artiste to have a World Premier under Black Entertainment Television BET.

Emmanuel Bezhiwa Idakula who admitted in a recent interview that Nigerians are yet to accept his genre of music like Hip Hop is one of the few soul and jazz musicians whose unique, style and music will thrill lovers of good music.

At his live concert in December, the audience could not help but applaud at the dexterity of the acoustic guitar player and singer as he serenaded them with great performance. With his album, 'Super Sun' released in 2011, this graduate from Covenant University is set to give fans much more as he headlines shows and events in 2013.

Signed under CAMP records under the leadership of Cobhams Asuquo, the Nigerian music industry and the global music world is set to see more of good music and soul performance from the young music acts.

Burna Boy

Burna Boy was one of the shining acts in the music industry in 2012. This 21-year old Damini Ogulu was among the young musicians who were selected as a result of a contest to perform at the Headies 2012.

Though Burna Boy officially broke into the music industry in Port Harcourt in December 2010 when he moved back to Nigeria from London, it wasn't until June, 2012 when he made a cross-over to the Lagos music scene with his mid-tempo Summer Jam, "Like To Party" that the budding star got media attention.

The dark dude shot into limelight in the second half of 2012 after he released his single, 'Like To Party' and 'The visuals'. Since then, he became a household name. He started gracing high profile shows immediately and until the end of the year 2012, his name was on all the major shows in the country. Burna Boy is signed to Aristokrat Records and he's surely one of the artistes to watch out for come 2013.

He was also the Celebrity Guest on 'Glo Presents The Big Friday Show'. He was also at the list of celebrity judge auditioning contestants of last year's MTV VJ search competition alongside Funke Akindele-Oloyede, Ice prince and Wizkid.

Dammy Crane

Dammy Crane better known as Oyindamola Johnson Emmanuel is a singer, song writer who has had the honor of working with several established producers and artistes.

Signed to 2Face's Hypertek, Dammy Krane has successfully carved a niche for himself with his unique sound, which is a fusion of fuji and afro-pop.

His single and video, 'My Dear' has endeared him to many. Dammy Krane enjoyed so much visibility in the media in 2012.

Playful in his lyrical content and known more for "Off his head freestyles", Dammy is gradually becoming the Nigerian youth favorite. Dammy has done tracks with a couple of the industry big names and more to come as they have come to accept him as the next thing to take-over the industry. 2013 can only be a greater year for the young singer and with a great label to pave way for him there's nothing stopping him.

Dammy grew up listening to the likes of Fela, Femi Kuti, Lagbja, Sunny Ade, 2Face, D-Banj, Saucekid and the likes and soon after, started working with a couple of them.


Niyola who joined the Empire Music Entertainment roster in 2012 is expected to make a big impression in 2013. Rolling with a star studded label like EME as their first lady, which is also home to Banky W, Wizkid, Skales and as a splendid singer, Niyola is expected to hit it big this year.

With an electric and sweaty performance by Niyola and the EME group in the Baddest Concert last December, music enthusiasts believe that there is more from the group particularly Niyola and Shaydie who seemed to have been overshadowed by Wizkid and others.

The first lady of EME, arguably the best musical group in the year 2012 according to the Hip Hop awards which gave them the Best Group Act award will be in the spotlight as more is expected from Eniola Akinbo, (her real name).

With her single, 'Don't Get There' which is enjoying rave reviews, the R&B artiste who released her debut album years ago under West Side Records, her upcoming album under EME, will establish her in the bustling Nigerian music industry. With producers like Master Kraft, Spellz, Tin Tin and Oscar, the first Lady of EME is one to watch out for.

May D

Musicians that rocked 2012 will not be complete without mentioning May D. The artiste who came into limelight in the award winning song, 'Chop My Money' by P Square enjoyed rave reviews because the song was a success even with International act like Akon who featured in the remix.

But this same song which announced Akinmayokun Awodunmila, also severed his relationship with the acclaimed Pop twin artistes as May D was sacked from Square Records, the record label headed by Jude Okoye, elder brother of the celebrated artiste due to allegations that he was telling his friends that he wrote the single, 'Chop My Money'.

May D was smart enough to ride on the fame and he released his single, one of the most played songs. He has launched his own label and also acquired a brand new Nissan Maxima with customized plate number.

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