Artistes to watch out for in 2023

Oyekunle Tamilore

2022 was a great year in the Nigerian music industry, full of surprises, streaming, publicity, chart toppings, and heartbreaking losses. It had terrific breakouts in the likes of Asake, Pheelz, and YoungJonn. The torch has been passed on to 2023, and 2023 promises to be even better.

Here, we are looking at some incredible musical talents we should keep an eye on. The artists mentioned in this list have insane potential to take their careers to the next level. We are rooting for them and believe they can become the next big act everyone would talk about and try to get involved with.


Ekeh Chiaka Joseph, popularly known as Majeed, is a Nigerian Afropop Singer and Songwriter signed to Dream Empire Music. He is known for his breakout single “Yawa No Dey End,” released on the 25th of February, 2022, as the lead single off his extended play Bitter Sweet. He was cited as one of the 10 African Artistes You Should Know by Audiomack after he achieved mainstream fame with his hit single. Later, a new version of “Yawa No Dey End” was released with Joeboy, one of the biggest Artiste in Nigeria, through emPawa. He opened for Reminisce, CDQ, and Terry Apala at Urban Live, a music concert curated by Urban96 Radio Network monthly, and was named Apple Music ‘Up Next’ Artist in Nigeria later on. He’s already basking in the acclaim that comes with a good year, and one can only speculate on what this year will bring.

Major AJ

Boluwatife Vincent Ajogwu, professionally known as Major AJ, is one of the most vibrant voices veering into the music industry. Chocolate city’s new signee, Major AJ “Retrobaby,” as he’s fondly known, is a Nigerian Afro-Fusion songwriter, singer, and rapper. He is known for his breakout debut EP “Retroverse.” At this time when the industry is tilting towards an RnB/Pop boredom. His music style, an eclectic blend of Electronic Funk, Pop, and RnB, takes listeners back to the golden era of the ‘80s when the likes of  Steve Monites, Fela Kuti, and William Onyeabors developed the world with their distinct sounds. Major AJ undoubtedly has what it takes to ascertain his relevance in the music scene. With a loyal fanbase MajorGeng and a team like chocolate city, he is unquestionably a significant force to be reckoned with in 2023. We cannot wait for all the good music he has in store for us.


Sulaimon Shekoni Abiola, popularly known as Khaid, is a Nigerian Afropop singer, songwriter, and rapper, signed by Neville Records. He rose to the spotlight with his debut single, “With You,” released on 25 January 2022. The track became one of the country’s top hits, with over 1.4 million streams on YouTube and 2.9 million Spotify streams. Months later, he bagged Apple Music’s “Up Next” artiste in Nigeria. And his hit single ”With you” was featured in Apple Music Nigeria 2022. His second release, the Mage-produced Afro-trap record “Ski,” displayed his rapid-fire abilities and the song’s catchy production.  Months later, he released Amala featuring Rexxie and Zlatan. Eyes are on him to see what he will deliver in 2023.


Abimbola Oladoku, better known as Bayanni, is a fast-rising Nigerian artiste and songwriter signed to Mavins records. Shortly after joining the Mavins, the singer released his EP “Bayanni.” with Don Jazzy as Executive Producer, which includes four tracks: ‘Family,’ ‘Body,’ ‘Ta Ta Ta,’ and ‘Kala.’ He was featured on the Hit single ”Won Da Mo” and ”Album Chapter X”. Bayanni is intent on keeping his listeners on their toes, and with only a handful of releases in 2022, there’s no telling what he’ll do in 2023.


Tonade Oladapo Adetunji, popularly known as Oladapo (Ola with the most), Sony Music signee, is a multi-talented musician and songwriter who creates Afro-fusion music using a mix of local languages. He’s known for his breakthrough single “Alone” off his debut EP “Blind.”  His music style is a blend of highlife sounds with unique modern components, delicately adorned with his local inspirations, which include Yoruba, his mother tongue, and Nigerian Pidgin. In 2021 Oladapo shared a formidable debut EP. In 2022, he was featured on the hit single “E No Fit Be Me” and the Album ”Ejoya class of ’22” but we have no doubt that he has more up his sleeve, and we can’t wait to see them.


Tariq Oluokun, popularly known as TAR1Q (tariqforkeeps), is undoubtedly one of the fastest-rising Nigerian artiste. Tariq of the chocolate city is one of the voices that has what it takes to end 2023 as a global star. He’s known for his breakthrough debut EP ”Son Of The Moon” (SOTM). He possesses all the necessary elements, including sound and brand.  With many people looking to see what he will do next and how much he can do, He is now on the verge of reaching the zenith of his career.


Tochukwu Ojogwu, popularly known as Odumodublvck, is a Nigerian rapper and songwriter known for his exuberant stage performance and genre-blend. Odumodublvck is a member of the hip-hop collective Anti-World Gangsters. In 2022, he signed a record deal with NATIVE Records in partnership with Def Jam Recordings. He is known for his breakthrough hit single “Picanto” featuring Zlatan and Ecko Miles. Odumodublvck is unquestionably a force to reckon with. Not only is he continuously winning over new fans, but he is also doing it with pleasure and little effort. Certainly, Odumodu is one of the few musicians who will rule the music scene in 2023.


Nathan Ayomikun Otekalu-Aje, known colloquially as Azanti, is a Nigerian prodigy with extraordinary skill. He signed a record deal with Apex village. His breakout began with his collaborative Album with Psycho YP titled ‘YP & Azanti, Vol. 1’. He has never given up in his pursuit of success in the music industry ever since then. A year later, he released his sophomore project ”Azanti”. He has the world in his sights, and his unique style of music reflects that goal. The unquestionable ability of the budding musician has brought him heights of notoriety. Azanti has managed to utilize his artistry to the fullest in such a short time. 


Oluwo Yusuf, popularly known as YKB (yusufkanbai), is a multi-talented rising star in the Afrobeat genre who is rapidly becoming a phenomenon in the music world. He exploded into the airwaves in 2022 after his hit single, ”San Siro”. YKB is a talented musician with a wide range of styles. He has a devoted following because of his diversity, which reflects his varied lineage. Afrobeats, R&B, and trap music are all represented in his work. His development and emerging notoriety are not surprising, given his ongoing hard work and appearance in several notable projects. YKB is undoubtedly a rare gem in the music industry. He has been tipped to make headlines in 2023 with his groovy tunes.

Noon Dave

David Obafemi, professionally known as Noon Dave, is a fast-rising Nigerian singer and songwriter newly signed to Chocolate City Music record. The love-themed record, ”Brunch”, is a fine blend of stellar lyricism, groovy rhythm, and masterful delivery. There isn’t much to say about the insanely talented artiste except that we all want a project this year. He taps into his songwriting inspiration from a diverse exposure of soaking up elements of soul, R&B, pop, and Afrobeats to create a unique sound. The lyricism and rationale of Noon Dave have kept him afloat in the industry, and he is ready to blast.


Adams Olabode Michael, popularly known as Smada, the newest NATIVE Records signee in partnership with Def Jam recordings, is one of the latest Afro-fusion artiste to emerge in the Nigerian music scene. He’s known for his breakthrough single ”Ye Anthem”. The young Afrofusion sensation has placed himself in the perfect position to be the next big thing out of Nigeria’s vibrant music scene. Smada is intent on keeping his listeners on their toes. We wouldn’t call 2022 his best year yet. But he did pretty well last year. In 2023, sleep on him at your loss.


Samuel Idowu Oluwadarasimi, professionally known as Soundz, is a Nigerian entertainer, Recording Artist, Songwriter, and Producer. His music career took a turn for the better when he made a cover version of pop stars Beyonce and Wizkid’s ‘Brown Skin Girl.’ Soundz is beginning to establish himself as a force to reckon with in the music industry. He has released some radio-friendly songs like Ballerina, Amina, Emergency, Okay, and many more. Last year, he released his debut EP, “In The Rough.” Soundz is sure to make significant progress in the coming year, thanks to his unwavering passion and infinite potential. It would be nice to see what he comes up with this year.


Samuel. Popularly known as Novemba is an afro-fusion singer-songwriter. Novemba used the downtime of the Covid-19 lockdown to record his ”Novian Universe” EP, inspired by his desire to let his fans know about his little world called the Novian universe, Where he showcases his romantic and self-reflective side. Bringing out his A-game on his recent project, “Escapade” EP. Novemba has established himself as one of the top singing prospects we will have in the future, and he is just getting started.

From seasoned veterans to exciting up-and-comers, these artists have what it takes to take their careers to the next level. So mark your calendars ready for some great music from Nigeria!!

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