The Nigerian music industry is fast-paced. One could become stale in the blink of an eye. In this piece, TOFARATI IGE takes a look at some of the top artistes in the industry without a hit song to their names in recent times
Asa is one of the most easily recognisable names in the Nigerian music industry. However, it’s been a while since we last heard her velvety voice on a hit song. Her last known album, Bed of Stones, was released in 2014.
As it is well known, Asa hasn’t been resident in Nigeria for a while now. At the peak of her career, the singer had relocated to France. As a matter of fact, her debut album was recorded there. However, that has never affected her appeal back home, as most of her songs have enjoyed airplay in Nigeria, despite her ‘absence’.
It is arguable that Asa has, in a way, transcended the Nigerian music space. Her music has a global appeal and she is quite big in France. However, it will also amount to closing one’s eyes to the obvious not to admit that there has been a lull in the artiste’s career.
Inasmuch as an artiste is ultimately judged by her repertoire over the years, she needs to keep putting out fresh music to stay relevant.
Most of her infrequent social media posts are clogged with followers begging her to ‘bless them with new music’.
Sadly, gone are the days when most successful rap songs in Nigeria were flavoured by Vector’s voice. These days, we only hear the rapper on Instagram…and in a movie, Lara and the Beat.
The rapper released a song, This one Is, some months ago but it failed to garner enough public reckoning to make it a hit. At about the same time, he released another single, SARS is Around, which was addressed at the incidence of highhandedness by men of the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad. Though the song was in tune with the #FreeSARS movement on social media at that time, it failed to fly.
Some have posited that the rapper’s pseudo-transition from being a rapper to a singer is responsible for this vacuum.
The journey of Praiz to relevance in the music industry is one that can be said to have been achieved against all odds.
He wasn’t given a chance from the onset but he fought, tooth and nail, to have his voice heard. His first hit song, Rich and Famous, belies the prayer that has long taken refuge in the singer’s heart.
Though Praiz has been able to prove his mettle over the years, nothing tangible has been heard from him recently.
Praiz released an EP titled, 2 Mins, earlier this year, but you wouldn’t find any of the songs on it on the top played charts in the country. However, the album enjoyed a lot of positive reviews, and it is arguable that since its theme kept true to the RnB genre, such songs rarely top the charts in this part of the world. But it wouldn’t also hurt Praiz to have songs which cut across and have mass appeal.
Cynthia Morgan (Madrina)
Cynthia Morgan came into the industry with such promise that no one would have expected to see her name on a list like this so soon.
However, Morgan has been missing from the charts for too long. Her exit from Northside Records could partly be blamed for her reduced visibility though. She released a song this year titled, Billion Dollar Woman. The song got rave reviews but perhaps because it hasn’t got enough push, people just don’t know about it.
By the way, the singer now wants to be known strictly as Madrina.
One of the most beautiful female rappers to come out of Nigeria, Eva Alordiah seemed to have everything going for her. Her talent, attitude, persona and other attributes even led some to refer to her as rap royalty at some point.
However, she seemed to have fizzled out like a substandard balloon before fully stamping her presence on the industry. A woman of many parts, she is also a make-up artist and entrepreneur. Perhaps, it is these side-activities that have kept her busy. She is not known to have released any song this year.
According to a post on her Instagram page, her mission now is to ‘transform a million lives through the power of words’.
Her fans wouldn’t surely mind some sort of assurance from the rapper to keep their mind at rest that she’s still in the industry.
This is another artiste that started with so much promise but seemed to run out of steam midway.
Korede’s 2015 hit song, Godwin, was so big that the lyrics became a ‘national anthem’ and prayer of sorts. However, the jerry curls-wearing singer has not been able to rework that magic, despite how hard he has been trying.
The singer’s song, Melanin Popping, was enjoyed by some but somehow, it didn’t make it to the big leagues even though it promoted self-worth among dark-skinned people. Other songs he has released this year include Stamina, Together and So Tey, but they haven’t been able to generate the buzz needed, such as the one enjoyed by his Mavin colleague, Reekado Banks.
“Oh, what a voice,” was how an entertainment journalist once described Chidinma’s performance. She had just released her hit song, Kedike, back then in 2012, and we were opportune to witness one of her first performances in the industry. The applause that greeted her rendition was better imagined as everyone present seemed to agree that a star had just been unveiled on that night.
That feverish anticipation continued to trail her career as many expected so much from her. But it seems the stars have refused to align for the singer to churn out another hit song.
It seems Timi Dakolo’s love for his family has kept him more in the news lately than his music career. A lot of blogs regularly report stories of how the Iyawo Mi singer shows off his family on Instagram, but it’s been a while we heard a hit song from him.
One of the acclaimed songwriters in the industry, Darey has a rich music pedigree, as his father, Art Alade, was a renowned entertainer in his days.
The singer has also done well for himself with notable songs such as Escalade, Not the Girl, Pray for Me, among others. But he has been too silent for comfort lately.
Dr Sid has been over the moon and back (no pun intended) with his music but it seems he can no longer recall the directions to take music lovers to space with his songs.
We don’t recall having any hit songs from him lately.
When Dija came into the industry, a lot of people expressed delight that she might just be the first female artiste from northern Nigeria to break through the glass ceiling of the music industry. However, those who thought that way have had a rethink.
Dija has been unable to turn out hit songs as expected of a person who aims to compete seriously in the highly saturated industry.
Some may say Emma Nyra took a maternity leave but even before she put to bed, she had been having difficulty delivering a hit.
There is a dearth of vibrant female voices in the industry at the moment. People like Emma Nyra can capitalise on that drought to push themselves back into reckoning.
Undoubtedly gifted, many often wonder what went wrong with Jesse Jagz. There has been an eerie silence from the singer for far too long.
Sean Tizzle’s inclusion on this list is a culmination of several factors. Truly, the singer has consistently been releasing songs but they never seem to make it to the charts, more less topping them.
Perhaps, the songs are not enjoying as much promotion as they should.
Waje is still regarded as one of the top female artistes in the country. However, it is also true that she hasn’t had a hit song in recent times.