The 17 One hit Wonders of the Nigerian Music Industry:
These WONDERful acts graced our airwaves massively with their hot, chart-topping hit songs. They headlined the juiciest shows and bagged prestigious awards. We enjoyed them, and they in turn enjoyed the fame and ostentatious lifestyle. But then… puff! Like a genie set free from a bottle, they disappeared. Like a candle flame, they slowly burned out.
The Nigerian music industry is no place for the inconsistent; its life-blood is based on dynamism, consistency and creativity.
These acts are in no way failures, but they just could not keep up. They did try to make a comeback, and some are still trying, but for one reason or the other they just cannot find that magic button.
Without further ado, here they are:
- BIGIANO – SHAYO
You definitely remember Bigiano, I mean who wouldn’t? The infamous “Shayo Master“.
His 2008 Sheyman-produced dancehall hit, Shayo, single-handedly revolutionized the music industry. Its mind-blowing visuals set a new and arduous standard in video making. This dude put fellow artistes on their toes.
Then, he took the path of the hermit. Nothing was heard of him until 2013 when he made several efforts at a comeback, but unfortunately, they all fell through.
His debut tune still garners uproars whenever it comes on, that is how good Babalola Gabriel Olugbenga was.
- SKY B – I’M CALLING
It was in 2007 that Sky B, a freshman in the industry straight out of Port Harcourt city, hit the masses with the I’m Calling euphoria. It was an epidemic. “My babeh ma babeh, you’re the one that I’m calling…” the Danco Music act was on fire.
He went ahead to release his debut album, Pray For Me, which sold more than a million copies despite the trampling ills of music piracy.
There were expectations of a cascade of hits from the chap after that, but he just failed to grow with the industry.
He subsequently released a sophomore album which couldn’t get a grip on the people because they had long acclimatized to present genre.
- DJ ZEEZ – FOKASIBE
When Edlyne Records’ signee Kingsley Elikpo aka DJ Zeez put out Fokasibe in 2009, the streets literally went insane.
How could you throw a party in 2009 and the DJ does not slam Fokasibe??? That almighty intro…
The song had this crowd appeal that the masses couldn’t just get enough of, despite mixed feelings which trailed its lyrical content.
As its reign began to fizzle out, the artist hit us with Bobbee FC. Decent effort, though its subject matter happened to be controversial.
Let’s not forget he also did a fantastic job on Skuki’s Banger and Iyanya’s Shaye, but none of those equate the ferocity of Fokasibe.
- WEIRD MC – IJOYA
aka The Weird One.
While her persona may do justice to the name, Adesola Adesimbo Idowu is one artiste her fusion of English and Yoruba lyrics never seizes to astonish.
It was Ijoya, the Don Jazzy and JJC produced single from her 2006 album, After Da Storm, which got her nationwide recognition.
That done, the weird one went weird; albeit honestly, she did a great job on her feature on P-Square‘s 2006 chart-topper Bizzy Body Remix.
Currently, no one seems to know her whereabouts.
- DIPP – POP OFF SELECTA
We rooted for Dipp, yes we did.
With the release of the crispy video to his smooth 2011 single, Pop Off Selecta, the nation christened Oladipupo Ogundele the new Nigerian Usher, the break-dance messiah. There were even fantasies of collaboration with P-Square.
But the young geezer took our hearts which were willingly given, and whoosh!.. tore it into several pieces. He left us with arms akimbo and mouth agape.
Though he tried to make several comebacks after that, it was never the same.
Dipp broke our hearts.
- AY.COM – PASS ME YOUR LOVE
One of the most popular Nigerian slang of 2009 was “take it!” courtesy of AY.com‘s monster hit and street anthem Pass Me Your Love.
The Terry G-produced track in which he also featured, was a huge success but that was as far as it went for AY.
Could it be as a result of the devastating battle between both acts as to who possessed ownership of the song?
Well, Terry G went on dishing out hits after hits, but sadly not AY.com. He made an effort at a comeback with a single, No sleeping –but it sure seems the dude is fast asleep.
- J’ODIE – KUCHI KUCHI (OH BABY)
In 2010 when J’Odie (real name Joy EseOghene Odiete) got the whole nation chanting “ooh baby” anytime her song, Kuchi Kuchi came on, we all had high expectations from her.
The song had a unique mixture of rhythm and melody, and its soulful African delivery was nothing short of beauty in every sense of it.
We all had our fingers crossed, eager to be blown away by this extraordinary damsel. But alas, it was “to your tents, oh Israel”.
Her sophomore single, Under The Mango Tree, which was undoubtedly a decent effort, failed to uphold her musical prowess.
- W4 – KONTROL
Whether it’s “Wagba Kontrol” or “Wagba Petrol”, we owe it all to Wale Adepoju aka W4.
When the song was released in 2010, it was initially a sleeper hit, and then suddenly took the nation by storm.
It unarguably became the biggest song in the country around 2012, partly because of the national fuel crisis as at that time.
W4 has not been lazy and has put out a few other songs which unfortunately did not stick, ergo his place on this list.
- TY BELLO – GREENLAND
You probably are familiar with the “Olajumoke story” and the lady behind her sudden shoot to stardom.
Ace photographer and philanthropist, TY Bello, shot to limelight in 2007 with her hit, Greenland, which was wholly accepted across Nigeria and beyond.
Her debut album, also titled Greenland, was released two years later. It was subsequently followed by The Future and then a free album, The Morning Songbook in late 2014, but Greenland remained her climax.
Photography seems to be the diva’s strong suit.
- JAZZMAN OLOFIN – RAISE D ROOF
A member of the defunct group X-Appeal, Jazzman went ahead to make a name for himself. His sizzling hit Raise D Roof, which featured Adewale Ayuba, literally lived up to its name, wreaking ecstatic havoc wherever it was slammed.
Yet, like every other cohort on this list, it was his crescendo.
He subsequently released Shake Something, a pretty decent tune which was still, a tad off the mark.
- SOTY – MALARIA
In mid-2007, we witnessed the release of an infectious R&B tune titled Malaria which gradually spread across Nigeria and the Western part of Africa.
It was unanimously dubbed “the female lovelorn anthem” owing to the fact that it was the first song to really address how the female folk felt about the male counterpart in terms of emotions.
The songstress brilliantly fused English and Pidgin as she softly sang about being affected by malaria due to the attraction she feels for a guy.
However, the release of her debut album seemed to be the beginning of her problems, as it was a bummer.
Needless to say, this song right here is a timeless love number.
- KAS – FI MI LE
Many acts have brought change (or at least intended to bring change) to the industry. Kas Lionheart Jonathan is in no way an exception.
Coming back to Nigeria from London in 2010 where he reportedly worked together with the likes of Don Jazzy erstwhile on music production, Kas hit us with Fi Mi Le.
Aside from the unique arty afro-pop beat, there was the absurd but lovable style of auto tune that we couldn’t get enough of. And when he brought on 2baba and the Koko Master himself for the remix, the sky was indeed the starting point, or so we thought. Alas, it was all downhill from there.
He subsequently dropped Wicked Girl and other singles but evidently people got tired of the vapid delivery that ensued.
Kas is now happily a pastor and currently does gospel / uplifting music.
Download Kas Fimile
Download Fimile Remix ft. 2face & D’Banj
- CHUDDY K – GAGA CRAZY
With his enchanting voice and the audacious producing skills of Spellz, a gargantuan hit was born. The tail end of 2011 never was the same.
Whoever could resist going Gaga when this hit came on? The chemistry between his vocals and the beat was an absolute bliss, and a tacit promise of better things to come.
Sadly, expectations were nipped in the bud.
Though Chuddy K (real name Chukwudi Ken Agali) still continues to make good music, that inaugural magic is missing.
- DEEBEE – COLLABO
Samuel Durojaiye Adebayo, aka DeeBee, put out this song in May of 2009, but it actually started to gather momentum in early 2009.
The Mr Daz-produced track was nothing short of a commercial breakthrough for the newbie –which he couldn’t keep up of course.
The song brought Deebee fame and breakthrough, and also helped his debut album, Collabo Master, achieve commercial success. But one thing no particular song can guarantee is… continuity.
And so it was for the lad.
- KEL – WAA WA ALRIGHT
“CAPital Hill Music’s former first lady”.
That been said, many saw her as a potential replacement for the then incumbent Nigerian music first lady, Sasha P. Others opined she was the future of female rap.
Kelechi Ohia aka Kel’s feature on the remix of Illbliss’ You Go Wound paved the way for her whereas her debut single, Waa Wa Alright, put her on the success radar. Then her input on CAPital Hill’s Dem Don De Move alongside Illbliss and Tha Suspekt seemed to buttress her versatility and cement her place in the male-dominated industry.
Hopes however came crashing with her 2009 album, The Investment. The album was a huge fiasco.
Eventually, she had to leave the label and has since been in the wind.
- KLEVER JAY – KONI KONI LOVE
2008 was the year, and Klever Jay made a suave debut into the industry with a colossal hit song, Koni Koni Love, produced by K-Solo.
Albeit not being a hit at first, the tune gradually crept into the hearts of the audience and stayed there for quite some time.
Clubs, parties, weddings… you name it, everywhere was buzzing with the hit.
His sophomore single, Igboro Ti Daro, tried to take the path of its predecessor, no doubt about that, but it was never the same.
After an album, The Beginning and few other songs as well, the artist himself agrees Koni Koni Love remains his most successful offering to date.
- VEECKO KYNGZ – MY CAP (IKPU YA)
This great song had the potential of turning the industry upside down, sideways, round and round, diagonally… you name it.
All the way from the Coal City State, Enugu, Victor Obi aka Veecko Kyngz achieved Pan-African status with his 2011 hit, My Cap. The whole nation incessantly grooved to this tune non-stop; but there was a problem –most people never really knew who the artist was..
No major promotions, no A-list shows, below-average music video… that was just it.
In 2015, the artist made an attempt to invigorate the hit song, employing the services of veteran Nigerian musician Sound Sultan, along with crispy visuals too, but a little too late. The nation had already moved on.
Nevertheless, this remains one of the highly rated one-hit offerings from the nation.