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The singer has also had his name mentioned in
international publications, his music played on
mainstream US radio, his shows booked to
capacity at capacity stadiums in Africa,
performed in Amsterdam at a Chris Brown
tour, Essence Music Festival and a lot of choice
The singer is also gearing up for the release of
a body of work. On this issue, there are
divided reports. Some camps bear information
that the planned body of work is an album,
others are championing an EP. Regardless, a
body of work is sure this year. He has also
extended his Starboy Entertainment, dipping
his hands into sister country Ghana, and
snapping up Efya, Mr Eazi, and R2bees.
With his exploits so far, there has been a
concerted global campaign towards African pop
music. Davido has a deal with Sony, Ayo Jay
just got signed to RCA, Tiwa Savage is about to
ink an international management deal with Jay
Z’s Roc Nation. There are still rumours of more
in the making, with the continent being
opened up and labels marking up their
territories as experts forecast an arms race to
grab the best acts with crossover potential.
A lot of these have had Wizkid at the front of it
all, working hard, recording his life away, and
the resultant spotlight filtering past him and
becoming something bigger for the continent.
Right now Wizkid is Africa’s number one. That
position has been occupied in the past by a
long list of talented stars from the country.
2face Idibia has had his legendary run, D’banj
once was seen as the messiah, and although he
is contested fiercely at home by Davido, he
still stays top of the lot.
With more light on Wizkid, there’s a general
feeling that he is Nigeria’s pop music
ambassador, representing us in foreign waters
and spreading our gospel. The kids here look
up to him, and that followership has increased,
most partly because he has raised the ceiling
of achievement for our industry. His name is
on the Billboard Hot 100 Charts, where it is
hugging the top position.
Previously, collaborations between African
artistes and their US counterparts have been
at the will and cost of the Africans, with Davido
recently paying top dollar to get Meek Mill,
and Sarkodie having his record with Acehood
leaving a $25,000 hole in his pockets. This has
been turned around by Wizkid, with the
potential for us to be the sole benefactors of
such an enterprise now being explored.
As his work continues, Wizkid has become
Nigeria’s ambassador for music affairs,
spreading our word far into the world. Sure
there are many names that shine the light on
the Nigerian continent right now. But Wizkid
leads them all.