Entry 15 – Be Like Johnny… Remain Unique

In recent years, there has been a tremendous surge in the number of upcoming musicians in Nigeria. Every day, new music singles by unknown artists are being released and they literally go unnoticed. This can be disheartening and has forced many new musicians to follow the crowd. They try to be like others, mimic the music style of famous artists and even adopt their dance moves. This makes them become like everybody else and they lose the ability to stand out. 

This trend, however, was broken by a young man that I admire so much. John Ighodaro who is popularly known by his stage name Johnny Drille. He came on the scene and broke the status quo. Johnny Drille started singing at a very young age at the church where his father was the pastor. After that phase of his life, he went on to start writing his own songs. For the first few years of his career, he went unnoticed. Absolutely nothing happened for him, his style was different and was not what most Nigerians would want to listen to. 

In 2013, Johnny Drille went on to compete in the MTN project fame contest which did not do so much for his career. However in 2015, he released his cover version of Dija’s “Awww” and this caught the attention of the Mavin Records’ boss, Don Jazzy. In that same year, he released one of his most successful songs “wait for me” which is my personal favorite by the way. What made Johnny’s music different?

He chose a particular style of music and stayed with it. He didn’t try to change his style so as to fit the crowd. At the end of the day, it paid off for him and he is currently arguably one of the most successful young musicians in the country. He has his niche of fans and he is successful. 

As a musician you must make a choice, if you want to stand out you must be ready to stick with your style. Other notable musicians like Asa, Timi Dakolo and others applied this principle of being different and it worked for them. If you are like everybody else, nobody will take you seriously. 

BE like Johnny… Remain Unique.  


This article was written by Chukwuekem Chijioke; connect with him on IG here  

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