#MOBOAwards: Wizkid proves he’s the ‘Baba Nla’
• Trumps Jay-Z, Solange Knowles, Kendrick Lamar, Travis Scott, DJ Khaled, Others
The year 2017, no doubt has been a good one for Starboy Records artiste and head honcho, Wizkid, as he made Nigeria proud at the just concluded 2017 Music of Black Origin (MOBO) award that held at the First Direct Arena in Leeds, United Kingdom.
He took home the ‘Best International Act’ ahead of America superstars and music heavyweights, Jay-Z, Cardi B, Solange Knowles, Kendrick Lamar, SZA, Travis Scott, Migos and DJ Khaled, who were nominated in the category.
Baba Nla as he fondly calls himself was the cynosure of eyes as he won big at the recently held All Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA) in Lagos. He clinched three major awards: ‘Best West African Artiste’, ‘The Song of the Year’ and ‘Artiste of the Year’, trumping contenders like Davido, Runtown, Tekno and others.
Wizkid is not a new comer to the awards as his first shot at the MOBO in 2012 fetched him the Best African Act. From that time to date, he has been nominated five times (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017) and won three — twice as Best African Act (2012 and 2016) and the latest being Best International Act.
For flying high the nation’s flag, the multiple award-winning singer and his compatriot, Davido have been commended by President Muhammadu Buhari.
President Buhari in a statement signed by his Special Adviser on media and publicity, Femi Adesina yesterday, joined the teeming fans of the artiste in Nigeria and all over the world in celebrating the well deserved and meritorious recognition.
Buhari in the statement affirmed that both singers have showcased the rich talents in the country, and brought pride to the nation through their many songs and performances, commending their dedication, hard work and charity works.
He also called on the upwardly mobile artistes to be cautious and mindful of likely distractions to their careers, urging them to serve as ambassadors of the country and role models to upcoming musicians.
Former President, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan have also congratulated and commended the pop singers. Jonathan took to his Facebook page to share the congratulatory message.
“When Nigeria does well, I cannot help but feel well. My happiness is tied to the happiness of Nigeria and when Nigerians break records and take the name of Nigeria to greater heights it exhilarates me.
“Thank you Wizkid for raising Nigeria’s flag high for the positive, not the negative. Your emergence as the Best International Act at the #MOBOAwards is a proud moment for Nigeria. And the fact that you emerged over Jay-Z and Drake makes it even more celebratory. Well done. GEJ,” he wrote.
Also congratulating Wizkid for his giant stride was former Director-General Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) now a senator, Ben Bruce, who took to his Twitter page to celebrate the afrobeats singer.
“Dear @wizkidayo, I‘ve been in the entertainment business as an investor since 1980 and one of my proudest moments for Nigerian music is the day you defeated both Jayz and @Drake, two of the biggest stars in the world, to win the Best International Act at the #MOBOAwards. Well done,” he said.
It need be noted that it is not only Wizkid that made Nigeria proud at the MOBO awards, as Omo Baba Olowo (O.B.O), David Adeleke well known as Davido also clinched the Best African Act, trumping other contenders to the award like Maleek Berry, Sarkodie, Juls, Tekno and arch rival, Wizkid
Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar hailed both Wizkid and Davido for winning big at the awards. He sent his congratulatory messages to both artistes via his official Twitter handle.
“My young friend, Wiz Kid @wizkidayo beat other big international artists to win one of the world’s biggest music awards. Congratulations! I hear young David O won too, very good day for Nigeria,” he wrote.
Biggest winner of the night was Grime act, Stormzy. The London-born artist edominated the star-studded ceremony as he fought off competition from Sampha, J Hus and Skepta to be crowned Best Male Act and Best Grime Act. He also picked up the coveted Best Album gong for his debut Gang Signs & Prayer.
Born on July 16, the Ojuelegba singer started recording music at age 11. He released 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 record label, Empire Mate Entertainment (E.M.E). He rose to prominence in 2010 with the release of the single, Holla at Your Boy.
He followed up with other critically acclaimed singles like Tease me/Bad Guys, Don’t Dull, Love My Baby, Pakuromo and Oluwa Lo Ni, which became hits and formed part of his debut studio album, Superstar, which was released in 2011.
His self-titled second studio album, Ayo, was released in September 2014 and was preceded by six singles: Jaiye Jaiye, On Top Your Matter, One Question, Joy, Bomboy and Show You the Money.
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 Kigdom, Canada and Australia.
Following the release of his second studio album and expiration of his five-year recording contract, Wizkid left E.M.E. On March 1, 2017, Billboard magazine reported that Wizkid signed a multi-album deal with RCA Records.
Although the deal was first reported in September 2016 by several media. Chairman and CEO, RCA Records, Peter Edge, confirmed the signing while speaking to Music Business Worldwide in January 2017.
Wizkid was ranked 5th on Forbes and Channel O’s 2013 list of the Top 10 Richest/Bankable African Artistes. In February 2014, he became the first Nigerian musician to have over one million followers on Twitter. Also, he became the first Afrobeats artiste to appear in the ‘2018 Guinness World Records Book’ for his contribution to Drake’s hit song, One Dance.
Early in November, the Caro singer welcomed his third child with his manager, Jada Pollock. The proud father of three has not hide his joy over the birth of the baby as he recently posted photos of himself and the baby having a father and son bonding time on his Snapchat page.