Nigeria's NATIVE Records Partners With Def Jam Recordings

Teni “Teezee” Zaccheaus, Shola “Sholz” Fagbemi, Tunji Balogun, Seni Saraki (left to right).

Photo: Geo Davis

Nigeria's NATIVE Records Partners With Def Jam Recordings

The Lagos and UK-based NATIVE Records, music division of the NATIVE network, will sign and develop new talent.

Def Jam Recordings has entered into a joint exclusive partnership with NATIVE Records. The recent venture was announced by Tunji Balogun, the Chairman & CEO, Def Jam Recordings, Seni ‘Chubbz’ Saraki and Teni ‘Teezee’ Zaccheaus, Co-Presidents and Co-Founders of NATIVE Networks.

Balogun has had a lot of commercial success, and was instrumental in spearheading the careers of renowned artists like Wizkid and Tems, who have been at the forefront of pushing the African sound to the forefront. In their joint collaboration, both companies with use their years of expertise and acumen to develop African talent and place more African artists on the global music stratosphere.

Native Records is a Black-owned platform that was founded in 2016 by Saraki and Zaccheaus with Shola Fagbemi, Addy Edgal and Suleiman Shittu. It operates as the music branch of Native Networks and is dedicated to amplifying the voices of underrepresented African artists, and has been a driving force in the Afrobeats movement. The collaboration with Def Jam Recordings, an affiliate of Universal Music Group will synergize Afro-centric sounds and artists with mainstream hip hop, contemporary R&B, soul and pop artists and their management.

In a public statement, Tunji Balogun said that the partnership was an authentic deal that would open doors for new talent.

“As we build a culture here at Def Jam that connects the best in the global black music diaspora - from hip-hop and R&B to reggae, afrobeats and more — clearly some of the best, most vital, interesting and cutting-edge new artists and sounds in music today are coming out of the continent,” said Balogun. “Seni, Teni and the Native crew have their fingers on the pulse of what's truly happening in the scene, as an engine for discovery, and as a hub for creators and artists. I’ve been a fan of their platform, and have been connected to the guys for some time. Our partnership feels authentic and natural, and I believe we’re going to discover and develop some amazing talent together.”