Chuchu Ojekwe/Mavin Records.

The Emergence of Bayanni

The rising singer talks about graduating from the Mavin Records academy and breaks down how his song “Ta Ta Ta” went viral across several parts of Africa.

Last year, Bayanni’s “Ta Ta Ta” grew to be a continental afrobeats hit. Finally emerging from Mavin Records’ famed academy, finessed and remodeled to a fully-fledged and complete artist, a new Nigerian name had arrived. His unveiling video, grand and innovative, presented Bayanni as the product of a lab experiment, whose abilities had now been boosted and now ready to show forth his advantage.

Born Abimbola Elijah in Alagbado, a bustling settlement between the borders of Lagos and Ogun State in Nigeria, Bayanni nurtured his voice as a part of church choir groups. “I was in children's choir for most of my childhood,” Bayanni tells OkayAfrica one Wednesday afternoon. “Even when I got into university, I was still in the choir. Along the way, I joined some dance groups ‘cause I enjoyed dancing. At some point, I even won some dance competitions but I’m not sure I have those skills anymore.”

Music and family cuddled Bayanni in his early years. His parents have always been in support of his passion, with his dad paying for his first-ever studio session. It so happened that he went to a high school that taught musical instruments and, as a result, he can play seven of them. His favourite is the drums. “I know if I handle drums, everybody will cry, but let's not go there,” he says with excitement in his voice. “But yeah, I mean, I was popular in school for being a talented drummer. People knew me back then in school as Drummer Femi.” He feels that being a drummer is a cheat code that helps him maneuver his vocals around a production.

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Photo by: Mavin Records

Listen to Mavin All-Stars' New Song "Won Da Mo"

Mavin Records' Rema, Ayra Starr, Crayon, Boy Spyce, Bayanni, Ladipoe, and Johnny Drille all collaborate on a new banger.

Mavin Records' stars are set collaborate on a joint album, due later this year, to mark the label's 10th anniversary. Lbel founder and legendary producer Don Jazzy will serve as the album's executive producer, which will be unveiled to fans on December 2.

In addition to the album, the label mates—which include Nigerian music heavyweights like Rema, Crayon, Boy Spyce, Bayanni, Ladipoe, Ayra Starr, and Johnny Drille—have collaborated on a new song called "Won Da Mo," an up-tempo record with backed by an energetic rhythm that weaves together the different sonic emblems of each artist.

As part of a larger rollout to celebrate the Mavin Records' 10th year in business, the artists will also follow up their releases with a Mavin All-Star concert on December 16. The Mavin All-Star concert is expected to be a part of the annual LivespotXFestival, a music experience launched in 2019.

While discussing the upcoming 10-year special, Don Jazzy mentions: "We are incredibly blessed to be 10. It's not easy to have that staying power in our industry, but our fans have been amazing. They've been with us on this journey and relentlessly supported the amazing talents we discovered and groomed here at Mavin. We are inspired to do more and to continue pushing the industry to the global stage."

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