This man has quite a deep pool of knowledge about the Nigerian entertainment industry and he decided to share over the holidays.
We are all music connoisseurs in our own right but we can’t deny that there are some people out there that know more about this thing than we do. And every now and then, these people share some facts that leave us both shocked and in awe at the same time.
If you know anything about Nigerian entertainment, then Ayeni Adekunle, founder & publisher of NET (and PR juggernaut Black House Media) is no stranger to you. As an entertainment journalist, he wrote for all the big publications and dailies of the 90s and early 2000s. He has a proven record of big stories and several exclusives.
Naturally, this man has quite a deep pool of knowledge about the Nigerian entertainment industry and he decided to share over the holidays. You’re not ready for this list of 22 music facts shared by the OG in response to this tweet. Check them out:
- Mozart died at age 35.
- Sunny Neji was to have been ‘Lagbaja’. The man who eventually wore the mask did not plan to be a solo act.
- The Nigerian music legend KSA ran away from home at 17, to come to Lagos where he joined Moses Olaiya’s band.
- Femi Otedola published a magazine dedicated to Shina Peters at the peak of the Juju star’s career.
- The late Nigerian leader MKO Abiola was a skilled ‘agidigbo’ musician. The agidigbo is a large traditional plucked lamellophone used by the Yoruba people.
- Ebenezer Obey, Sunny Ade, Segun Adewale – all juju musicians – had significant international record deals in the 80s with Virgin, Island and Mercury respectively.
- The Nigerian singer Faze was known as Lyrical Urge prior to joining the Plantashun Boiz.
- African China and M.I washed toilets before they made it. M.I in America and China at National Stadium in Lagos. The accomplished Nigerian rapper, creative director, and label executive M.I Abaga was also a personal assistant to singer Jeremiah Gyang.
- The Grammys did not have a category for best rap album until 1995.
- The Beatles were the first to own the brand name ‘Apple’. Their label was named ‘Apple Records’, with the holding company being ‘Apple Corps’. Steve Jobs’ Apple now owns all the trademarks related to Apple, after a legal battle that cost millions and lasted almost three decades.
- Aṣá was a contestant on Star Quest in 2002. KC Presh won the competition.
- ‘Denge Potz’, the track that launched Baba Fryo into national fame was produced, mixed and mastered by Nelson Brown in just four hours.
- Steve Ayorinde is the first music journalist to become editor of a national daily in Nigeria.
- Daddy Showkey and Daddy fresh are both former band mates (Pretty Busy Boys, along with Sexy Pretty and Cashman Davis); and brothers-in-law (Showkey is married to Fresh’s sister).
- Kelly Rowland collapsed during her performance in Lagos, Nigeria on July 15, 2007.
- The late Nigerian entertainer Nomoreloss derived his stage name from his baptismal name ‘Solomon’ written backwards ‘Nomolos’.
- The now rested pop music group ‘Maintain’ was originally made up of cousins Tolu and Olu; as well as Freeze and his girlfriend Ope.
- His name might not ring a bell, but Benson Idonije is Nigeria’s most enduring music columnist and critic, Fela Kuti’s first manager, and Burna Boy’s grand dad.
- Fela was a big fan of Geraldo Pino (born Gerald Emeka Pine, a Sierra Leonean Nigerian musician and one of the early pioneers of modern African pop music) and ‘briefly considered him a threat’.
- Gifted Nigerian singer Waje is the female voice on several of your favourite P-Square songs including “Bizzy Body”, “Omoge mi”, and “Do me.”
- Neil Portnow was president of The Recording Academy for 17 years (2002-2019). He quit this year, handing over to Deborah Dugan.
- Bonus: The singer Tunde Baiyewu (of Lighthouse Family fame) is a step son of a former two-time president of Nigeria Olusegun Obasanjo.
Now, I can bet you weren’t expecting some of those facts. Who would’ve thought Sunny Neji was supposed to Lagbaja? Or that Asa was a contestant on Star Quest in 2002? Well, you’re welcome. And shoutouts to the OG, Ayeni Adekunle, for blessing us with all these gems!
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