2013 is a different experience to different people. But for some, it’s their best, in all ramifications. No doubt, the year produced an array of music stars that churned out fantastic songs, but some were just too exceptional! This year could be regarded as their year, a turning point in their career, as they didn’t only give music lover hit songs that remained on their lips till date, they also ignited at different concerts, gigs and their astonishing performances linger in the memory of their teeming fans.
Often times, we concentrate our search on the hip hop artistes probably because we see them regularly on advertised gigs, music videos; and as face of different telecommunications networks; forgetting that the country is blessed with great artistes who are more successful in other genres of music.
ENCOMIUM Weekly’s RASHEED ABUBAKAR’s dug deep into their activities during the year under review, and presents you top 5 most successful artistes of 2013, and why other 5 fantastic stars didn’t make it. Let us tell you how we arrived at the names of our finalists; the number of hit songs, shows they headlined – local and international, including their fees, albums, and international recognition without forgetting their mouth-watering endorsements, especially with telecommunications giants…
1 – FEMI KUTI – Afrobeat King, Femi Anikulapo-Kuti is the only Nigerian artiste that was nominated for the prestigious Grammy Awards in 2003, and he currently got his fourth nomination, on December 6, 2013, courtesy of his latest album, No Place for my Dream. Going by our findings, the son of the late Afrobeat legend, Fela, is arguably one of the most successful artistes in Nigeria. Apart from the fact that the album, which has songs like The World is Changing, Action Time, No Work, No Job, No Money, Carry On Pushing On and Politics Na Big Business is highly rated and globally recognised, Femi’s successes in 2013 were spectacular. Starting from his electrifying performances during South Africa and Europe tours, down to Nigeria where he performed at Kasapreko Africa Legends Nite, MUSON Afro Jazz Night, 2Kings Concert with 2Face, Night with the Masters featuring Onyeka Owenu, Ebenezer Obey and Wasiu Ayinde.
The Afrobeat King also performed at this year’s Music Meets Runaway, alongside D’banj. We can authoritatively confirm that Femi charges between N5 to N6 million for those gigs, except for Felabration, a free show organised in honour of late Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, where he collaborated with young artistes, including Wizkid in Jaiye-Jaiye.
2 – AKIN OF SHUGA BAND – Many did not know much about Akin Tofowomo, the leader of Shuga Band, but he’s undisputedly one of the most patronized bands in Nigeria. Shuga has been described as the king of gigs, and we reliably gathered that the Ile-Oluji, Ondo born entertainer has performed at over 100 gigs, mostly private parties, this year and his clientele include corporate and influential individuals from all spheres.
Some of his shows included the weddings of Kerry-Ann and Alex Akintunji; Jumoke and Gbolahan Fagbure; Lola Ashafa and Lanre Oladujoye; and Olubukola, the daughter of Col. Olagunsoye Oyinlola, the former Governor of Osun State.
Other performances were 5th Annual Bankers Committee Gala Night@ Transcorp Hotel, Calabar; Nigerian Conservation Foundation’s Annual Fund Raising Dinner Dance; and the Jumeirah Creekside Hotel, Dubai.
Charges: Between N3 to N6 million.
Songs: Tribute to MKO Abiola, Collections of songs entitled Christmas Medley.
3 – P-SQUARE – The choice of P-Square is undebateable. The sensational duo deserve it, going by their outstanding performances during the year. After much successes from last year’s Invasion concerts across Nigeria and Africa, they began 2013 with the release of monstrous musical dance-step entitled – Alingo, followed by Magical Healing. In May, the multiple award winning singers unleashed a collection of Greatest Hits featuring Alingo, and later they dropped Personally, which got them nomination for “Best International Performance” at the 2013 Soul Train Music Awards. They were also recognised at the just concluded Channel O Awards in South Africa.
Performances wise, no other hip hop artiste beat their record, and for every performance, they charged between N9 and N10 million, which makes them the highest paid hip hop artistes in Nigeria.
The Glo Ambassadors performed at the 2013-African Kings of Comedy London indigO2, Manchester Bcage Valentine Concert, Guinness’ Colourful World of More Concert in Lagos, and North American tour that ended with sensational Dallas Show. In Summer, they ignited Canada during Invasion Canada 2013, among others. A day before Peter, one of the P-Square’s wedding, they had another show in Ghana. They will be in Niamey in December 21.
Endorsement: Glo Ambassadors worth N240 million.
4 – KCEE – When he parted ways with his partner, Presh last year, many felt that was the end of his career! Their argument: there is no KC without Presh, but the lanky singer proved them wrong, and the whole story changed when he dropped his hit song, Limpopo mid this year. The success of this song was astonishing, as it topped music charts for weeks, transformed KCee’s life for real.
Album: Take Over (2013)
Hit songs: Limpopo, Okoso, Give it to Me ft. Flavour, Ifeneme, Pull Over ft. Wizkid.
Endorsement: MTN endorsement deal worth N20 million.
Performances: D’banj’s DKM Concert, MTN’s Calabar Allstars Concert, NB Literary Evening, Star Trek, AY Show, London, among others.
Charges: From N1.5 m to 3.5m (depending on the gigs).
Awards: Song of the year (CAAN’13), Most popular video by non-indigenous artiste (SSMA).
5 – FLAVOUR/IYANYA – It’s tough choosing between highlife singer of our time, Flavour N’abania and the winner of the maiden edition of MTN Project Fame, Iyanya for the last slot of the top 5 most successful artistes in 2013. But, after carefully analysing their achievements, we settled for the two.
For Flavour, he got more popular ever than before following series of collaborations and the release of wave making singles, particularly his wedding-themed music, Ada Ada, which has earned him numerous awards at the NMVA, Gbedu and SSMA.
Album: Blessed (2012)
Hit songs: Baby Oku, Ada Ada
Performances: 2013 US Tour across Houston, New York, Melbourne; MTV Africa all stars concert, Star Trek,
Guinness’ Colourful World of more Concert in Lagos.
Charges: N3 – 4 million.
Although, Iyanya released his monstrous hit single, Kukere last year, the talented singer has more songs like Your waist, Sexy Mama, Flavour, Jombolo Endorsements. This year, he got series of endorsement from MTN, Solo Phones Nigeria and Zinox Computers Performances; all to the tune of N70 million.
Tagged the most successful tour by an African Artiste in America and Canada, Iyanya toured 10 cities in America, sold-out tours in 5 cities in Canada between April – May 2013. He was in London and Manchester Concerts between June 9th and 14th 2013, held MTN Project Fame concert Calabar and Lagos (2013). Iyanya headlined 6 cities MTN Loud in Naija concert in Nigeria, November – December.
Awards: Best International Performance Nominee, song of the Year NEA (New York). Channel O best male dance Video of the year Nominee.
Charges: N2.5- N4million.
OTHERS WHO DIDN’T MAKE THE LIST, BUT MADE TOP 10…
6 – OLAMIDE – Call him The Man of the Year, you’re very correct! Olamide has proven most of his critics wrong. His performances for the year were very astonishing, energetic and electrifying. He won many hearts with his monstrous singles, such as Durosoke, Stupid Love, Anifowose and the release of his 3rd album, Baddest Guy Ever Liveth.
Endorsements: Etisalat ambassador, Guinness deal.
Performances: FOZ album concert, Felabration, Colourful World of More, Star Trek, Hennessy Artistry Club Tour, Jimmy Jump Off show, Cokobar Music Festival, UK.
Charges: N3 million.
Awards: biggest winner at NEA (2013), NMVA (2013), Mode Men of the Year Awards (2013)
7 – WIZKID – Wizkid (real name, Ayodeji Ibrahim Balogun) did not start the year on a good note. No thanks to the break-up between him and his record label boss, Banky W, and many believe that this, no doubt, affected him. But it did not take him time before he got his groove back by floating a new label, Star Boy. Although he was reported to have staged some failed shows, the 23 year old singer recorded remarkable successes in 2013.
Hit songs: Jaiye Jaiye ft. Femi Kuti, Caro ft. L.A.X, Nobody But You ft. Wale.
Endorsements: MTN deal worth N20m (2013), Guinness (2013), Pepsi (renewed, worth $350,000 US dollars), Convict Music Deal.
Performances: Guinness’ Colourful World of more Concert in Lagos, Abuja Invasion, Ghana Meets Naija, Amsterdam 2013 Concert, Felabration, Ghana Azonto night ft. Chris Brown.
Charges: N5 million
Awards: 2013 Channel O’s video of the year for his Azonto video; African Artiste of The Year at 2013 Ghana Music Awards
9 – D’BANJ – Dapo Oyebanjo, otherwise known as D’banj’s performance in 2013 has been criticized heavily by pundits, who expected to see more of the Nigerian born international singer. The Kanye West’s GOOD Music signee’s popularity dropped after enormous worldwide recognition he got from the success of Oliver-Twist. Yet, D’banj remains the second highest paid hip hop act, after PSquare, charging between N6 million and N8 million. He was also listed in Forbes’s 10 most bankable/richest artistes in Africa, alongside PSquare and Don-Jazzy, etc. He headlined also 2013 Henessy Artistry where he was reportedly paid N60 million.
Album: D Kings Men (DKM)
Hit songs: Don’t Tell Me Nonsense, Finally, Top Of The World, Oyato, Cash Flow and Raise Your Glasses (Hennessy Artistry 2013). He’ll be performing at Glo CAF awards in Lagos.
Performances: Zimbabwe Concert, Colourful world of more Concert, Star Trek, MTV All-Stars concert, DKM Concert 2013 etc.
Charges: N7 million
Endorsements: Glo’s N20 million deal, Nigerian’s Bank of Industry, Vodafone, Ghana.
9 – TIWA SAVAGE – In the last three years, energetic songstress, Tiwa Savage has been consistent, churning out hits upon hits. She hasn’t disappointed her fans since her debut single, Kele Kele Love, and 2013 has been rewarding for her. Permit me to say, getting married to her dream man, TeeBillz, is also a success for Tiwa Savage during the year under review.
Album: Once Upon A Time (2013)
Hit Songs: Ife Wa Gbona ft Leo Wonder, Eminado ft. Don-Jazzy, Folarin, Love Me, Love Me, Love Me, Olohun Mi.
Endorsements: Pepsi Ambassador (renewed), MTN’s N30 m deal.
Performances: Summer Jam Concert 2013, Colourful World of More Concert, Dionne Warwick Sister Sledge Concert, The Sister Soul Concert (with Mary J. Blige), Warri Gig (where she performed bare-foot in the rain).
Charges: N2.5 million
10 – DAVIDO – His topmost achievements in 2013 were the successful international gigs across Europe and the U.S, and shooting lovely videos from his 2012 O.B.O debut album, including the controversial Skelewu videos.
Album: O.B.O The Genesis. July 2012
Hit Songs: Dami Duro, Gobe, Skelewu
Endorsements: MTN Ambassador, Guinness.
Performances: London Concert, Birmingham Concert, Manchester Concert, European Tour, Guiness Colourful World of More, Lagos, The Corporate Elite Season 7.
Charges: N2.5 million.