It is no longer news that the entertainment industry is one of the biggest industries in Nigeria right now, especially in the aspect of music.
Music is one big business venture that has turn a lot of Nigerian youths into millionaires and thereby equiping them with the resources to live their dream lives.
There are a handful of record labels in Nigeria churning out fresh good crop of artistes that are well talented and marketable year in year out. As a lover of Nigerian music, I have been following and keenly observing the way and manner in which record label CEO’s in Nigeria has been piloting the affairs of their label in order to create a niche for themselves over the years.
Truth is, many record labls in Nigeria have really proved their capabilty of consistency in keeping with the trend of the Nigerian music industy. However, the success achieved by one label cannot be equated to the other.
5. Y.B.N.L (Yahoo Boy No Laptop)
Since the conception of the label, it has transformed the Nigerian music industry to a greater extent. The label is home to some fast rising acts in the Nigerian music industry like Lil Kesh “Keshi”, Viktoh, Adekunle Gold and the duo which recently inked a deal with the label, Xino and Chinko Ekun.
Over the years, the label has churned out great hit songs such as “Shoki”, “Shoki Remix” ft. Davido and Olamide, “Gbese Re” all by Lil Kesh. Also “First Of All”, “Voice Of The Street”, “Stupid Love”, “Shakitibobo”, “Melo Melo” all by Olamide and “Shade” by Adekunle Gold, just to mention but a few.
4. Made Men Music Group (TripleMG)
The Made Men Music Group popularly known as TripleMG was founded by the duo of Iyanya Mbuk popularly known as Iyanya and his manager Ubi Franklin.
Since after winning the MTN Project Fame in 2008, the “Kukere” crooner Iyanya is unarguably said to be one of the A-list artistes to reckon with in Nigeria having worked hard to carve a niche for himself.
With Iyanya been the lead act on the label, the label also houses artistes such as Tekno, Selebobo, Emma Nyra and Baci.
The label also has an album to her credit “The Evolution” by various artistes on the label. The album was released on May 29th 2014 with production credits to Selebobo, Tekno and DJ Coublon. However, Selebobo mixed and mastered the album.
3. Chocolate City Music Group (Choc City)
The label was founded in 2005 by Nigerian lawyer Audu Maikori along with Paul Okeugo and Yahaya Maikori. Chocolate City is regarded as one of the biggest record labels in Africa.
The label is home to popular recording acts such as M.I, Ice Prince, Nosa, DJ Caise, Femi Kuti, Pryse, Victoria Kimani, Dice Ailes and Koker.
Formerly, the label has housed artistes such as Jeremiah Gyang, Brymo, and Jesse Jagz. Djinee and Asa are also top-notch Nigerian acts that the label has done great works on their music career.
Nigeria’s multi-talented songwriter, singer, vocalist, instrumentalist and producer Jeremiah Gyang was the first act to be signed to Choc City. His album “Na Ba Ka” had a huge and massive success selling over 4 million copies and winning numerous awards for the artiste and the label.
Audu Maikori in 2007 won the British award for the International Young Music Entrepreneur of the Year (IYMEY) by the British council.
Chocolate City won the award for the “Best Record Label Of The Year” award in 2011 and 2013 City people awards respectively.
In 2015, Audu Maikori stepped down after ten years of running the affairs of the label and M.I Abaga became the President, Chairman and CEO of Chocolate City while Ice Prince became the vice-president.
2. Empire Mates Entertainment (E.M.E)
Olubankole Wellington popularly known as Banky W founded E.M.E in 2002 while studying at a local university in Albany, New York.
After returning home in 2008, Banky W established E.M.E in Lagos. Wizkid became the first act to be signed to the label in 2009 and later on Skales was also signed same year. In 2012, Shaydee, Niyola and DJ Xclusive who is the label’s official DJ were all signed to the label.
On June 18th 2012, the label released her first compilation album “Empire Mates State Of Mind”
Wizkid later left the label following the release of his second studio album “Ayo” and the expiration of his five year contract.
In february 2014, Skales also parted ways with the label on the grounds of the expiration of his contract and an agreement was reached between the label and the “Mukulu” crooner.
You will agree with me that these two young talents that have left the label so far are making the Nigerian
Music industry proud both home and abroad.
The label is also associated with top-notch music producers such as Masterkraft, Cobhams Asuquo, Spellz and Samklef.
E.M.E was nominated for the “Best Record Label” at the 2013 City People Entertainment Awards.
1. Mavin Records (Supreme Mavin Dynasty)
Mavin Records was founded by one of Nigeria’s A-List producers who is also an artiste Don Jazzy.
The closure of former famous record label in Nigeria Mo’Hits Records which was owned by Don Jazzy and D’Banj gave birth to Mavin Records.
Since the inception of the record label, Mavin can be said to be the power house of Music in Africa within the shortest possible time. The record label is home to artistes like Tiwa Savage, Dr. SID, D’Prince, Di’Ja, Reekado Banks and Korede Bello. Wande Coal was also a former signee to this label. Don Jazzy, Altims and Baby Fresh are producers affiliated to this record label.
Mavin Records released her compilation album “Solar Plexus” into the market on May 8, 2012. The label’s official website was also a launched a day to the release of the album May 7, 2012.
Following the massive success of the label after it’s launch, Don Jazzy inked endorsements with Samsung and Loyamilk. In the same vein, Tiwa Savage was also unveiled as a Pepsi ambassador. On February14, 2015, Don Jazzy and Tiwa Savage inked yet another endorsement with Konga.com. Di’Ja, Reekado Banks, Korede Bello were also unveiled as Proud Glo Ambassadors in 2015.
The label won the “Best Record Label of the Year” at the City People Entertainment Awards in 2014.
What do you think about this list? Kindly drop your opinion below in the comment box.