As Wizkid turns 29, fans across the globe celebrate one of Nigeria’s globally acclaimed music stars in the last two decades.
29 years ago in Ojuelegba, a suburb in Surulere local government area of Lagos State, Ibrahim Ayodeji Balogun was born into the home of Alhaji M.O and Mrs. Balogun.
Until the mid-2000s, Ayodeji was only a studio rat trying to find his feet in the music industry while his father wanted him to get a degree.
When he recorded his first official single in 2009 under Empire Mates Entertainment at the age of 19, it was with passion and hunger for success and when the single was officially released in 2011 under the same label, the stage was set for Wizkid.
With the fame, came the headache and Wizkid became an instant newsmaker across Nigeria.
Less bothered about the gossips, Wizkid devoted more time and energy to making music way ahead of his time while also making a name for himself.
From BET to MOBO Awards, Headies and NEA, Wizkid has won it all. He also has multiple nominations at the World Music Awards, MAMA and All African Music Awards.
Wizkid became a regular face in the United Kingdom, where he joined forces with Tinie Tempah, Skepta, and other black music acts to carve a niche for himself. He took the step to work his way to global recognition after collaborations with many music acts in the United States of America.
His fortune and fame took a leap when he collaborated with Drake to work on the Billboard hit single, ‘One Dance’.
In 2017, Wizkid broke another record to sell out the O2 Arena as the first Nigerian music star to perform at the event centre with the magnitude of attendance.
Wizkid’s imprint on the fashion scene
While he grew and soar as a music star, Wizkid’s fashion sense became a point of discussion amongst fans and fashion buffs.
He went ahead to create his Starboy clothing line and ensured a pop-up shop in different parts of the U.S., Paris, and UK.
The young musician further made another record when he teamed up with athletic apparel giant, Nike, to promote the Nigerian football jerseys.
Promoting the new jersey with selected Super Eagles players, Wizkid’s fame plummeted as he combined success in the fashion world with his success in the music industry.
As if that was not enough, Wizkid pushed his luck a bit farther and jumped on the same wagon with the globally acclaimed model, Naomi Campbel to strut the runway for an international fashion brand, Dolce and Gabbana.
The feat recorded by Wizkid walking down the runway with Campbel remains another highpoint of his career internationally and globally.
Recently, Wizkid hinted that he’s been ‘rolling’ with Nigerian billionaire, Tony Elumelu. And the 29-year-old father of three has moved a notch higher.
His relationship with Elumelu has not been clearly spelled out but recently he was announced as the headliner for UBA’s strategic corporate market event scheduled for this summer.
It’s no doubt that at 29, Wizkid is far ahead of his peers, who started out on the streets of Ojuelegba it all began for the star boy.