Perhaps for the first time ever, we have the big four of Davido, Wizkid, Olamide and Burna Boy dropping albums in the space of four months as each of them continues to make statement as to who is Afrobeats biggest star.
Tracing their rise to prominence, the trio of Olamide, Wizkid and Davido arguably attained super stardom way before Burna Boy. Wizkid’s inroad into limelight started with ‘Holla at your boy’ off his debut album ‘Superstar’ in 2010, and he hasn’t looked back ever since.
His collaboration with Drake on ‘One dance’ is seen as a turning point for Wizkid and Afrobeats by many music analysts. He’s bagged a Grammy nomination and entered the 2018 Guinness World Records as ‘One dance’ topped charts in countries across the globe.
Davido’s first singles, ‘Back when’ and ‘Dami duro,’ called the attention of the music industry to him and eyes have not been off him ever since. He has consistently dropped hit tracks over the course of a decade and he lays claim to having the best selling Afrobeats single, ‘Fall,’ having being certified platinum in the US after crossing the 10 million sales mark.
‘Fall’ is also the longest-charting Nigerian pop song in Billboard history. Other songs such as ‘Fall,’ ‘Blow my mind’ and ‘Risky’ have also reportedly received platinum certifications.
Olamide, also known as Badoo, as with Wizkid and Davido, invaded the music scene blazing with his debut album, ‘Rapsodi’ in 2011. He has gone on to conquer Nigerian streets, redefined rap, street hop and slang culture. His consistency in the industry has seen him produce no less than nine personal music projects. A year without a hit track from the YBNL boss often feels incomplete.
Burna Boy, the Odogwu crooner, also announced himself with music in 2012 with ‘Like to party’ but his super stardom came with his fourth studio album, ‘African Giant.‘ Not only did he pick up the moniker African giant, the album trended all the way to Grammy, as he became the first singer of his generation to have a personal album nominated. The feat made fans and critics elevate him to the WOD (Wizkid, Olamide, Davido) status.
Burna paved the way with his ‘Twice as tall’ album post-lockdown and the critical reception it has garnered, suggests that he could have another shot at the elusive Grammy. Olamide followed with ‘Carpe Diem’ in the early days of October and it is expectedly doing numbers on digital platforms. Wizkid dropped ‘Made in Lagos’ late October and Davido is the last to the album party with ‘A Better Time.’
Fans are already slugging it out as to who has the ‘better’ album and who should be considered ‘Afro beats’ greatest of all time (GOAT). The hostility among the fan base of the superstars is already reaching unprecedented heights with the four having an album released around the same period which can be easily compared. While the music industry gets all the more bigger for it, the debate on who the biggest star is, won’t stop anytime soon.
Kola Muhammed has imprint across local and international media. He is passionate about trends in the domains of culture, communication and technology.