Nigerian music star, Ayodeji Ibrahim Balogun, better known by his millions of fans across the globe as Wizkid, is no doubt one of Nigeria’s biggest music exports.
The multiple award-winning superstar has not only etched his name on the sands of time as one of the greatest music stars to come out of Africa but it is certain that he is not far from breaking boundaries yet.
In celebration of his day, these are 30 quick facts you should know about him, especially, if you are one of his biggest fans.
Read them below:
- Born on July 16, 1990, the singer hails from Lagos State and is from a family of six. He is the last child and also the only son.
- He started singing at the age of 11 under the stage name Lil Prinz. He also formed a group at 11 called Glorious Five. The group later released a seve-track album that was released in the church.
- His first album was with the Glorious 5 and it sold 10,000 copies.
- He had his first ever recording with OJB Jezreel at 11.
- At the age of 15, he was writing songs and receiving guidance from Naeto C.
- In 2006, he changed his name from the moniker Lil Prinz to Wizkid.
- Before raising to stardom Wizkid was lucky enough to have crossed paths with celebrated artistes like 2Face Idibia, Naeto C, Sound Sultan.
- He broke into the spotlight in 2009 when he featured on rapper, M.I Abaga’s song, ‘Fast Cars’.
- His break out single is ‘Holla At Your Boy’ that was released in 2010.
- In 2011, the musician welcomed his first son, Boluwatife. He currently has three.
- He acquired his first car in 2011. A black Honda Accord i-VTEC.
- In the same 2011, he dropped out of Lead City University in his third year. He was studying International Relations.
- His first solo album was released in 2011 with E.M.E titled, ‘Superstar’. The album had 17 tracks.
- In April 2012, E.M.E signed a joint deal on Wizkid with Akon’s Konvict.
- He floats his own Record Label, Star Boy.
- The singer’s favourite colour is black.
- Wizkid’s first International Collaboration was with Akon on Don’t Dull (Remix).
- He was reported to have popped N300million Champagne at his 23rd Birthday.
- According to FeeBuzz.com, his hit track, ‘Azonto’ was the third non-American songs of 2013.
- He is the youngest African artiste to get a Grammy nomination.
- Wizkid is the first African pop star to perform/sell out Royal Albert Hall in London.
- He is the Nigerian artiste with the most award nominations in Nigeria.
- He is the first African to bag seven Billboard nominations.
- He is the first Nigerian artiste to win three Billboard awards.
- Wizkid is the first afro-pop artiste to appear in the Guinness Book of World Records.
- He is the first Nigerian artiste to win an award from the American Society of Composers Authors and Publishers (ASCAP).
- Thanks to his collaboration on ‘One Dance’ a track he was featured on by Canadian rapper, Drake, Wizkid is the only Nigerian artiste to maintain the number one spot on iTunes World Chart for more than one week.
- About 24 hours after its release, Wizkid’s ‘Come Closer’ on which he featured Drake got up to a million views on YouTube. This makes Wizkid the first African artiste whose video hit the million mark within the first 24 hours of its release. He broke his own record with the music video for ‘Fever’. The video features Nigerian superstar, Tiwa Savage who plays his love interest.
- The governor of Minnesota, Mark Brandt Dayton honoured the singer, by naming a day after him in the United States.
- In an interview with Alex Frank of Vogue magazine in February 2015, Wizkid said he wears a mixture of streetwear and traditional Nigerian clothes. He cited Pharrell Williams as one of his fashion style icons.