Ten years ago, a 19-year-old singer left fans debating if the song ‘Holla at your boy’ was sung by a Nigerian. In the smooth tune with western-infused lyrics, the singer urged listeners to wave at him when they saw him drive by.

It was bold, fresh and a hit. The song, produced by DJ Klem (Knighthouse) and Vebee, is the first single from his debut album Superstar, during his years of deal with Empire Mates Entertainment (EME). Also read: Drake delights Top Boy fans as he confirms the Netflix series will return in 2020 It was the perfect introduction to Ayodeji Ibrahim Balogun aka Wizkid. Seeing then label boss, Banky Wellington drives Wizkid and Skales to a school, in a music video that did not seem Nigerian, imprinted an aspirational image in the minds of teenagers who saw themselves in this singer. Little wonder he became a sensation immediately after.

In January 2020, that song has turned 10 and the generation that grew up with Wizkid’s music remember with nostalgia all the memories ‘Holla at your boy’ created for them. They do not hold back on social media and suffice it to say that Wizkid has the largest and strongest fan base for an African artist. For 10 years, a generation, about to turn 30 have grown up listening to him, following and trying to understand his mystique while extolling his musical ability. Everything Wizkid breathes on is a hit, his fans make sure of that.

Three children, many collaborations with international stars including Beyonce, international deals, several awards and multi-certified hits later, Wizkid has evolved. He is still a physically small person but his influence, as an artist and an African voice, has grown exponentially.

He was the first-ever Nigerian musician to have over one million followers on Twitter, a feat he achieved in 2014. His videos on YouTube have millions of views with ‘Fever’, released in 2018 garnering over 46 million views and the more recent video ‘Joro’ has over 22 million views. He has won many awards and gained recognition and nominations from prestigious avenues like MOBO, The Headies, BET, MTV, Grammy, World Music Awards, and many others. Wizkid is currently one of the richest artists in Africa with a net worth of 20 million dollars. He currently has the biggest music deal yet by an African music act with his 2016 deal with RCA Records.

Read more at: https://www.vanguardngr.com/2020/01/wizkid-deserves-celebration-10-years-after-holla-at-your-boy/

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