Nigeria's Five Biggest Breakout Musicians Of 2022 – The Whistler … – The Whistler Newspaper
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Nigeria's Five Biggest Breakout Musicians Of 2022 – The Whistler … – The Whistler Newspaper

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The rising popularity of Afrobeats across the globe has continued to result in rapid increase in the number of new artists who are making entries into Nigeria’s music industry.
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Many have attributed this rise to the huge demand for Afrobeats by Nigerians and Africans living in the diaspora while some believe that the incentive for the new crop of artists is in the big paychecks their senior colleagues are getting.
PwC, in its 2020-2024 Entertainment and Media Outlook, said Nigeria’s motion picture and music recording industry exceeded the 2020 projected $806 million revenue, contributing about N730 billion ($1.8 billion) to the country’s GDP.
In its 2022–2026 outlook, the multinational company projected that music streaming “is set to be the fastest-rising revenue component across the country’s (Nigeria’s) music market by 2026,” with entertainment and media revenue in the country expected to more than double by 2026.
Citing 2021 data from streaming giant, Spotify, PwC identified young Nigerians as key drivers of the sector while noting the successes of Nigerian stars such as Burna Boy, Davido, and Wizkid who are topping charts with billions of streams, global awards, and selling out biggest arenas across the world.
Riding on the rising global recognition of Afrobeats, improved earnings and better recording contracts, among others, at least five fast-rising artistes crested their names among Nigeria’s breakout stars of 2022.
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Ahmed ‘Asake’ Ololade is a Nigerian Afrobeats singer and songwriter who attained limelight in 2022 after several of his songs recorded huge success.
The 27-year-old singer who studied Theatre and Performing Arts at Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) consistently released hit songs that got the attention of music lovers during the year in review.
Although Asake started releasing music in 2018, his career did not kick start until he signed with Nigerian rapper, Olamide’s YBNL record label in February 2022. Months after, he signed a distribution deal with Empire and the rest became history.
Songs such as “Sungba”, “Omo Ope” and “Trabaye” from his debut extended play, Ololade, became street anthems. He went on to release his debut studio album, ‘Mr. Money, With The Vibe’ on September 8, 2022.
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The album became the first African album with the biggest opening day and was confirmed by Apple as having “a record-breaking weekend on Apple Music”, adding “the album broke the record for the biggest opening day for an African album in Apple Music history.”
Songs from the album reached the Daily Top 100 in 60 countries worldwide while some hit number one in 14 countries worldwide.
In 2022, Asake began his world tour, selling out London’s O2 Academy Brixton in minutes and had to add multiple dates to meet fans’ demands.
Several people were critically injured while at least two people were confirmed dead after a crowd crush that took place on the final date of his tour at Brixton Academy in Brixton, London.
Oyinkansola Sarah Aderibigbe, known professionally as Ayra Starr, is a Nigerian singer and songwriter.
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She was born in Cotonou, Benin, and grew up there and in Lagos, Nigeria. She is born to Nigerian parents from Kwara State
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The music star became a household name in 2022 even though her music career started in December 2019 when she posted her first original song on her Instagram page.
After covering several songs by popular artists on Instagram, she caught the attention of Mavin Record boss, Don Jazzy who eventually singed her to the label.
Music streaming giant, Spotify announced her as the currently most streamed female artist in Nigeria after her song ‘Rush’ become a hit. Her lyrics are a mixture of English, Pidgin English, and Yorub.
Charles Chibueze Chukwu A.K.A Crayon is seen by some music lovers as the new face of Afrobeats. He grew up in Iba, Lagos, and was signed to Mavin Records in 2019.
Crayon has shown that he is truly talented and one of the fast-rising young musicians of his generation.
The 22-year-old became popular after his appearance on the song and video ‘All Is In Order’, featuring Don Jazzy, Korede Bello, DNA Twins, and Rema.
The song wasn’t his first, but it played a big role in shooting him into the limelight.
The singer’s stock soared after doing a good job on the Mavin Records all-star single “Overdose” with his hook and verse.
His hit song Ijo Laba Laba thrilled music lovers and has been doing great numbers on music charts.
Habeeb Okikiola popularly known as Portable or Dr Zeh is a Nigerian singer and rapper.
Portable, 28, became a music sensation after featuring Olamide and Nigerian dancer Poco Lee on his hit single “ZaZoo Zeh” in December 2021.
The rapper quickly became a household name as the Zazu Zeh chorus, and dance steps began trending.
Omolade Oyetundun Rachael, popularly known as Ladé, is the voice behind the street anthem ‘Adulthood na Scam’.
The 23-year-old singer and songwriter stamped her name in the music industry after the song went viral on Tiktok, debuting at No. 9 at TurnTable Top 100 and peaking at No. 8.
In July 2022, the song had 20,000 video creations and 96.1M views on TikTok and was named July’s ‘Fresh Find’ artist by Spotify.
Other artistes who made waves in the Nigerian music industry in 2022 include GodsFavour Chidozie, A.K.A Fave SZN, Oludipe Oluwasanmi David popularly known as Spyro, and Favour ‘Ugochi’ Anosike.
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