The categories for the BET Awards 2017 were recently released and the currently trending section of the awards in Africa at the moments is the Best International Act (Africa). Nigerian music acts, Wizkid, Tekno, Davido and Mr. Eazi and Nasty C (South Africa), AKA (South Africa), Stonebwoy (Ghana) and Babes Wodumo (South Africa) are the nominees this African category”.
This year’s award would see Starboy Music boss, Wizkid, making the list in the same category for the second time in a row; while this serves as a debut appearance for Tekno and Mr. Eazi.
Tekno’s appearance, of course does not come as a surprise to fans, music lovers and critics as he has had attained A-list status after he joined the Ubi Franklin-led MMMG label.
In the same vein, Starboy Music Worldwide act, Mr. Eazi, who also became a household name with his unique style which became mainstream in 2016 accompanied with his chart-topping EP ‘Accra to Lagos’ which was released in 2017.
This year’s award is slated to hold on June 25 at the Microsoft Theatre in Los Angeles.
David Junior Ngcobo (born 11 February 1997), better known by his stage name Nasty C, is a South African rapper, songwriter and record producer.He grew up in Durban where he was raised by his father. His mother died when he was only 11 months due to a car accident. He is most known for the single “Way It Go” by DJ Switch featuring Tumi and Youngsta, as well as the well-received remix to his single “Juice Back”, which features Davido and Cassper Nyovest. He was the youngest recipient for an award at the 2015 South African Hip Hop Awards, namely the Best Freshman Award.
Ayodeji Ibrahim Balogun (born 16 July 1990) better known by his stage name Wizkid, is a Nigerian singer and songwriter. He started recording music at age 11 and managed to release a collaborative album with the Glorious Five, a group he and a couple of his church friends formed. In 2009, he signed a record deal with Banky W.’s record label Empire Mates Entertainment (E.M.E). He rose to prominence in 2010 with the release of the song ‘Holla at Your Boy’ from his debut studio album, Superstar (2011).
Wizkid’s self-titled second studio album, Ayo, was released in September 2014.
In 2016, Wizkid achieved international recognition following his collaboration with Drake on the global hit, ‘One Dance’, which reached number one in 15 countries, including the United States, United Kingdom, Canada and Australia. In addition to his solo work, Wizkid has collaborated with several other artistes.
Following the release of his second studio album and expiration of his five-year recording contract, he left E.M.E. On 1 March 2017, Billboard magazine reported that Wizkid signed a multi-album deal with RCA Records.
He was ranked fifth on Forbes and Channel O’s 2013 list of the Top 10 Richest/Bankable African Artists In February 2014, Wizkid became the first ever Nigerian musician to have over 1 million followers on Twitter.
His latest effort, ‘Closer’, is one of the most listened/played African songs at the moment, across the world.
David Adedeji Adeleke, better known by his stage name, Davido, is an American-born Nigerian recording artiste, performer and record producer. His 2011 single ‘Dami Duro’ was well-received throughout Nigeria. Along with his elder brother Adewale Adeleke, Davido is the co-owner of HKN Music (a record label home to Sina Rambo, B. Red and DeeKay).
He released his debut album Omo Baba Olowo in 2012.Between 2013 and 2015, Davido released the singles ‘Gobe’, ‘One of a Kind’, ‘Skelewu’, ‘Aye’, ‘Tchelete’ (Goodlife), ‘Naughty’, ‘Owo Ni Koko’, ‘The Sound’ and ‘The Money’. The aforementioned singles were reportedly intended to be singles off the album, The Baddest.
In January 2016, signed a record deal with Sony Music. Davido started his own label, Davido Music Worldwide (DMW), few months after signing with Sony. Dremo and Mayorkun and two others are currently signed to the label. In July 2016, Davido signed a record deal with Sony’s RCA Records and continues to be one of the most successful young artistes out of Nigeria.
Oluwatosin Ajibade (Mr Eazi) is a Nigerian born singer who came to limelight in year 2016 after releasing songs like ‘Skin tight’, ‘Back slide’, ‘Hold up’ and more. He’s been based in Ghana since year 2007 where he grew up and started his music career.
Mr Eazi was born in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, and received his elementary and secondary education in Lagos, Nigeria; he then studied at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, in Kumasi, Ghana, where he graduated as a mechanical engineer.
Mr Eazi realised that his future was in music, after he got the opportunity to record for free in the studio of producers PeeWee and KluMonsta. A particular, single, ‘Bankulize’ paved to way for Mr Eazi, giving him a lot of shine and enabling him to work with even bigger artistes. It also lead to his release of his hit ‘Skin Tight’ featuring Efya.
This track became popular on YouTube, with over a million views spread out of several uploads.
In 2016, he was controversially excluded from the annual Ghana Music Awards because he was not a Ghanaian citizen. On May 7, 2016, WizKid announced that he had signed Mr Eazi to his record label Starboy Worldwide.
Born Augustine Miles Kelechi in Bauchi State, Nigeria, Tekno Miles is a descent of Ebonyi State but grew up in several parts of the country including Nassarawa, Kaduna and Abuja due to the fact that his father was a member of the Nigerian Army. At the age of 8, Tekno Miles was enrolled into a music school where he learnt and mastered the rudiments of playing the piano and guitar.
In 2012 while in Abuja, Tekno Miles was spotted by renowned Nigerian comedian Julius Agwu at an event after Tekno Miles received a standing ovation following the performance of a song titled ‘Onye Ne Kwu’, his remix of Ice Prince’s ‘Oleku’. It was at the same event he met Iyanya and Ubi Franklyn, the manager of Made Men Music Group who after sometime persuaded Tekno Miles to move to Lagos.
Prior to his meeting with Iyanya and Ubi, Tekno Miles was an artist signed under K-Money Entertainment. His first single titled ‘Holiday’ was released under the imprint.
He shot into limelight after releasing his first official single titled ‘Holiday’ which featured Davido. This was followed by chart-topping singles including ‘Dance’ and ‘Anything’ which earned him a nomination in the 2014 edition of the Nigeria Entertainment Awards. On December 18, 2015, Tekno Miles released ‘Duro’, a DJ Coublon-produced song that was widely received among music fans and critics thus gaining him new grounds in the music industry. He has released hit after hit since then and is currently one of the raves of the moment. He is signed to Made Men Music Group.
In 2009, AKA ventured for a solo career with hits like ‘Mistakes’, ‘In My Walk’ and ‘Do It’ with the latter making it to number 1 on the South African 5FM Top 40. He won Metro FM Music Awards for ‘Best Newcomer’, ‘Best Hip Hop’ as a solo act and ‘Best Produced Album’ for his debut Altar Ego. It is then that he was dubbed ‘Prince of South African Rap’ by one of the national newspapers.
In 201,1 AKA’s song ‘Victory Lap’ won Channel O’s Most Gifted Hip-Hop Video at the 7th annual Channel O Music Video Awards and at the 18th South African Music Awards, AKA was awarded Male Artist of the Year and Best Street Urban Music Album.
AKA has opened for Kanye West, Snoop dogg, Rick Ross, 2 Chainz, Big Sean and Kendrick Lamar in their South African tours. He has won many awards including ‘Best Street Urban Music Album’ and ‘Male Artist of the Year’ at the 18th South African Music Awards (SAMA). In late 2014, he signed a multi-album deal with Sony Music through its new local urban label Sound African recordings.
In June 2015, AKA’s sophomore album, Levels was certified Gold, by the Recording Industry of South Africa, for shipments of over 20,000 copies domestically, as of May 2016 the album was certified platinum by RiSA.
Real names Livingstone Etse Satekla, Stonebwoy hails from the Volta region of Ghana as the fourth child of seven siblings born on fifth of March, 1988. He realised his talents and abilities as a lyricist and script writer at an early age, remembering writing and acting drama pieces as far back as fourth year in primary school.
Stonebwoy released his first radio track ‘Makuma’ (My Heart) in his second year at Senior High School and several others later that same year. By his third year, he had acquired himself a stable underground popularity and was thereby able to release another track titled ‘Empress’ which held him up even after leaving school in 2007. After that, things happened in quick succession and Stonebwoy started work with S24 studios, the studio responsible for hits from artistes such as Samini, Tic Tac, Kwaw Kese, Okomfuor Kwaade, Afro Moses, Buk Bak to name a few. There, he met Samini in 2008 and clicked.
Under the management of Samini Music, Stonebwoy released his much awaited debut album called ‘Grade #1′ on 6th March 2012 to coincide with Ghana’s 56th Independence Day and his birthday weekend. Along with the most played track ‘Climax’, some of the other tracks on the album include the popular ‘Rat Race’, ‘Rudegyal’, ‘Pullback’, ‘Crazy’ and more.
Stonebwoy brands himself as the ‘Prince of African Dancehall’ and goes with a baritone music descant – ‘BHIIM’ – which has gradually caught the lips of most of his fans in Ghana and beyond. With his first album ‘Grade #1′ to his credit, he is looking forward to climbing international stages and handling other music projects with all acts across the globe.
He connected with Jamaica’s Karamanti in August 2012 and featured her on his song X-Factor which is currently being played on Jamaican radio and other stations in the Caribbean.