The past year was a bit of slow start in the music space and while it is normally hard to break into an industry that rally holds no guarantees for anyone, 2020 made it especially hard for the young acts in the underground as they were hit hard by the movement and social restrictions that all but crippled an entire income source for most of the industry. As they say, when COVID hits, it is the minions that suffer.
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So here is a list of our own next to blow artistes for the year, 2021, given indicators and prospects established in 2020.
1. Bella Shmurda
The 23-year-old had a major breakout in 2020. He had dropped an EP, Vision 2020, earlier in the year. The Okokomaiko-born act had been generating buzz, especially in campuses in around the city, all of which was probably the reason his music found favour with industry heavyweights. He featured on Olamide’s Carpe Diem album after featuring the ace rapper on his lead single, Vision 2020, and he has not looked back since. He is perfectly poised to really strike gold, this New Year, however.
Zinoleesky has come a long way from those Instagram videos with Lil Frosh to where he is now as a protégé of Naira Marley. The young act seems really keen on succeeding in the mainstream as he has been quite the buzz from 2020. He and Mohbad are making Naira Marley look good for bankrolling their careers in late 2020. He dropped his EP, Chrome Eccentric, which spurned two well-received singles, Mapariwo and Kilofeshe.
3. Alpha P
Alpha P made quite the impression in the last year. The teenager stormed the underground scene like no one, since Rema. The two just so happen to have been a duo a few years ago in Benin. Alpha’s management has done him good and he has the talent to back him up. He already has a distribution deal with Universal Music and has dropped a well-received EP, King of Wolves, early in 2020. That EP spurned two acclaimed singles, Paloma and Faya.
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The 24-year old had an impressive 2020 for an upcoming. He definitely turned heads with his Light EP. He closed off the year with a fine appearance on Rexxie’s KPK.
CKay is the full package as far as music is concerned. For a while, he has been there and about with The Chocolate Music Group where he was signed as a producer. These days he is signed to Warner Music South Africa and his experiment with singing has yielded fruit, thus far as his “Love Nwantiti”. We hope he keeps the same energy in 2021.
Tems was in the news recently no thanks to the recent debacle with Ugandan authorities back in December. Her appearance at that event was down to how good 2020 was for her. Her achievements were as prominent as they sound. She featured on WIzkid’s album and also dropped an EP. To be honest, she has been on a roll since 2019 with Try Me and Mr Rebel. 2021 should be the year she makes stardom a formality.
7. Omah Lay
The 23-year old held down 2020 like no other artiste in his category did. His EP Get Layd turned heads across the industry and also holding down the charts across many platforms for weeks. You’d be forgiven for assuming he had been doing this way longer than under two years. Like a few other acts on this list, he has a background in production so there is a reason to expect longevity from this man. He has hinted at an album in the new year so fingers crossed….
We hope to see more success and unity in the Nigerian music industry, this new year, 2021. Most importantly, we are expectant of more female acts to burst into the music scene.
Featured Image Source: Music In Africa
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