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From Amphitheatre to O2 Arena: Asake's inspiring rise to success

Since gaining mainstream fame in January 2022, Asake has enjoyed an unprecedented rise.

From Amphitheatre to O2 Arena: Asake's inspiring rise to success

On August 21, 2023, Asake became the latest Afrobeats superstar to announce his grand arrival on the international scene by selling out the 20,000-capacity O2 Arena.

Asake's O2 concert is a moment that not only captures Afrobeats' speedy ascension but also the way fortunes can rapidly change.

When Asake collaborated with Olamide on 'Omo Ope' in January 2022, nothing could have prepared him for the unprecedented run he would go on to enjoy.

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Armed with a compelling talent and burning hunger for success, Asake would release consecutive chart-topping singles which would rocket him to the top of the mainstream.

When he released his record-breaking debut album 'Mr. Money With The Vibez' to cap his electrifying run, one of the songs that would become an instant hit even before its release was 'Joha'.

On 'Joha', Asake remade the single that gave him his first-ever hit albeit it was within the confines of Obafemi Awolowo University (0AU), Ife, where he was studying Dramatic Art.

With 'Joha', Asake dazzled students at the famous Amphitheater where he performed with zeal and professionalism that had him employing uniformed backup dancers.

20 months after gaining mainstream success with 'Omo Ope', Asake is walking the paths of Nigeria's biggest musical export in a surreal moment that would inspire anyone privileged enough to have watched him do the famous 'Joha' dance at Amphitheatre.

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His decision to make a grand entrance by dropping from an Helicopter and to kick off the concert on a calm note through a series of mid-tempo songs highlights his talent as a showman. An inbuilt talent developed in OAU at the Dramatic Art's Pit Theatre Hall and the gruelling stage that's Amphitheatre.

Assisted by the celebrated band the Compozers, Asake dazzled fans not only with his hit songs but with his compelling presence.

When he performed one of his early releases, those who followed him before he became a household name basked in nostalgia for the journey and how far he had come. And when he started rolling out the hits, 20,000 fans sang along to every word, absolved every moment, and made it clear he was deserving of his success.

Asake's fortunes changed when he met Nigerian Hip Hop legend Olamide Baddo who signed him to his YBNL imprint. Together they formed a formidable partnership that delivered what is the greatest one-year run in Afrobeats. A momentum Asake continued into 2023 with the release of his successful sophomore album 'Work Of Art' and a mind-blowing feat of selling out the O2.

Asake and Olamide's impressive partnership was recreated on the O2 stage when the duo performed 'Omo Ope' the record with which it all began. When Olamide leaned in to whisper into Asake's ears, one can imagine it was a moment when the teacher took great pride in his student.

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At the concert, former YBNL signee and Street-Hop maestro Lil Kesh thrilled the audience. So did YBNL international sensation Fireboy who's also a product of the same alma mater as Asake.

The man of the moment brought out Tiwa Savage for their hit collaboration 'Loaded'. He dazzled fans with his performance of 'Blessings' with American sensation Fridayy. And he added class to the event when he brought out Tunde Baiyewu of Lighthouse Family to perform 'Ocean Drive', the song he sampled on 'Sunshine'.

Even though the show ended rather abruptly for the over 80,000 fans watching it live on YouTube, the concert offered everything it promised.

Asake's O2 Arena concert was a chance to be part of his surreal rise from relative obscurity to superstardom. A chance to be part of the making of a cinematic masterpiece. And for most people, the moment was enough.

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