Today, I bring you another ’40 Facts’ exclusive. Today is the turn of D’banj aka Eja Nla, aka Kokomaster.
1.His real name is Dapo Daniel Oyebanjo (popularly known as D’banj)
2. He was born on June 9, 1980. He would be 34 this year.
3. D’banj was born in Zaria, Kaduna State, Nigeria to a military officer who commanded an artillery regiment and a church dignitary mother who hailed from Shagamu in Ogun State.
4. At Age 11, D’Banj was enrolled to the Nigerian Military School but disenrolled from the school after three years. From the Nigerian Military School he proceeded to another military owned institution Nigerian Navy Secondary School, Ibara, Abeokuta where he completed his secondary school education.
5. His Genres are Afropop, R&B & Pop.
6. he is signed to the following labels: DB Records, Mercury Records, GOOD Music, Sony Music Entertainment, ROCKSTAR4000 and RCA.
7. At 14 D’Banj picked up the” Harmonica”. He was introduced to this instrument by his late elder brother, Femi Oyebanjo who tragically died in a plane crash at 17.
8. In 1999, D’Banj went on to study Mechanical Engineering at UNILAG (University of Lagos).
9. He performs in 3 Languages: Yoruba, English and Pidgin English.
10. His mentor is Fela Anikulapo Kuti.
11. His signature style is “SHADES” . He doesn’t go anywhere without them, even at night. Plus his 2 wristwatches.
12. Fresh from London, D’banj and his producer and friend, Don Jazzy, broke into the Nigerian music scene with the single ‘Tongolo’ in 2004.
13. His debut album was No Long Thing earned him ‘Best Newcomer’ award at the 2006 Channel O Music Video Awards. The album featured hit singles like ‘Tongolo’, ‘Socor‘ and ‘Mobolowowon‘.
14. He released his sophomore album in 2006.
The Don Jazzy-produced album had massive hits like ‘Why me‘, ‘Tongolo Remix’ ‘Run Down‘ and ‘Loke‘.
15. In 2007, He, alongside Don Jazzy, launched “Mo’Hits Records”
16. After two great albums and Mo’Hits launch, D’banj and Don Jazzy with new acts, Dr Sid, Wande Coal, D’Prince and K-Switch released its debut and only compilation album Curriculum Vitae with hit singles like ‘Pere‘, ‘Move your body‘, ‘Ten Ten‘, ‘Booty Call‘ and ’Ololufe‘ all became national hits.
17. In 2008, he released his third and last studio album, The Entertainer.
18. ‘The Entertainer’ contained hit songs like ‘Gbono Feli Feli‘, ‘Suddenly‘, ’Fall in Love‘ and ‘Igwe’
19. In 2009, D’banj stormed the airwaves with another smash single, ‘Scape Goat‘.
20. In 2010, D’banj campaigned for President Goodluck Jonathan and even remixed his 2009 single ‘Scape Goat’ to a Goodluck Jonathan presidential campaign song. It was reported that he, alongside his Partner Don Jazzy, got a whooping sum of N40million for that service. It was also reported that the N40million was expended on 2 Bentleys’ making them the first showbiz stars to own the prestigious autos.
21. In 2011, D’banj signed to Kanye West’s G.O.O.D Music in 2011 and also released ‘Oliver Twist’ which peaked at number 9 on the UK iTunes chart. Also reaching #2 on the UK R&B chart. On June 9, 2011, D’banj wrote on his Twitter account, @iamdbanj, “Just like yesterday, myself and my brother did Tongolo. 7 years later, Mo’Hits signs with GOOD Music. Best Birthday gift ever. God thank you.”
22. In 2012, He set up his own record label DB Records, signing his brother K Switch alongside two producers, Jaysleek and Deevee.
23. Just few weeks ago, D’banj sparked reports that he had quit G.OO.D Music when he deleted the Kanye West-led record label from his Twitter biography. Though he and his manager had reportedly come out to dispel those rumours.
24. Apart from a cameo appearance in the video for ‘Mercy‘ and a 12-second stint on ‘The Morning‘, a song off the 2012 G.O.O.D Music compilation album Cruel Summer, D’banj never made any impactful record with the Kanye West-led music group.
25. He has made the following released records and recordings in his 10-years careers:
Albums; No Long thing -2005, Curriculum Vitae (Mo’Hits Compilation album) -2007, RunDown Funk u Up -2006, The Entertainer -2008, D’Kings Men -2013
Singles: Tongolo -2005, Socor -2005, Mobolowowon -2005, Run Down (Funk u Up) -2005, Why Me -2006, Tongolo Remix -2007, Kimon – 2007, Suddenly -2008, Fall in Love -2008, Igwe -2008, Scape Goat -2009, Mr. Endowed Remix -2010, Oliver Twist -2011, Bachelor -2012, Cashflow -2013, For Example -2013, Top of the World -2013, Finally -2013, Bother You -2014
26. D’Banj tagged “Legendary Womanizer” by DailyMail is linked to several women. See our list below: Genevieve Nnaji, Aminu Abubakar, Rukky Sanda, Mercy Johnson, Abiola Bashorun, Jennifer Obayunwa, Ini Edo, Nadia Buari, Kenya Moore…
27. He has won the following awards in his short career:
Most Promising Male Artist; KORA All African Awards -2005
Best Newcomer; Channel O Music Video Awards -2006
Hip Hop World Revelation; Hiphop World Awards -2006
Artiste of the Year; Nigerian Music Awards -2006
Best African Act; MTV Europe Music Awards -2007
Hottest Single of the Year ‘Why Me’; Nigeria Entertainment Awards-2007
Best Special Effects ‘Why Me’; Channel O Music Video Awards -2007
Artiste of the Year; MTV Africa Music Awards -2008
Best Male; MTV Africa Music Awards -2008
Listeners Choice; MTV Africa Music Awards -2008
Artiste of the Year; MTV Africa Music Awards -2009
Best International Act Africa; BET Awards -2011
Best African Act; MOBO Awards -2012
28. He has bagged many Endorsement deals with many brands like Glo, Power Fist, Chris Aire,Virgin Colour soft drinks, UAC Foods, Africa Union’s One Agric, Nigeria’s Bank Of Industry.
29. He’s got numerous nickies ranging from Koko Master (2005), Skibanj (2006), Mr. Endowed (2010), Eja Nla (2012), Banga Lee (2013).
30. Dapo Daniel Oyebanjo, popularly known as D’Banj, signed a new endorsement deal with Globacom Nigeria in November, 2013. This is D’Banj’s second endorsement deal with the telecommunications company; the first ended in 2010 with the artiste’s refusal to extend his 2008 two-year contract.
31. His Role Models are Kanye West, Micheal Jackson, Usher, Jay-Z, R. Kelly, and Fela. D’banj’s first record ever bought was R, Kelly’s “12 Play” album
32. D’banj is the founder of Koko Foundation for Youth and Peace Development.
33. He is also Nigeria’s first United Nations Youth Ambassador for Peace.
34. He has the following International collabos to his credit.
Snoop Dogg – Mr. Endowed & Blame it on the Money, Kanye West – Koko Concert London & Scape Goat Remix, Pusha T – Koko Concert Lagos, Big Sean – Koko Concert Lagos & Blame it on the Money, Fally Ipupa – We the Best & DKM Concert Lagos, 2Chainz -DKM Concert Lagos.
35. D’BANJ has worked with Snoop Dogg, Kanye, Jay Z, Kid Cudi, LA Reid, Tinie Tempah, Rio Ferdinand, Idris Alba among others.
36. D’BANJ remains one of the most celebrated pop stars in Nigeria and on the international scene.
37. D’banj’s 2011 smash hit ‘Oliver Twist’ is arguably his biggest song.
38. “Oliver Twist” is the first video out of Africa to surpass 20million views mark on Youtube.
39. “Oliver Twist” by D’Banj is with over 25,522,316 views.
40. Big Congrats KOKOMASTER….There’s no limit!!!
+ He puts up an annual concert, Koko Concert which is a gathering of World Music celebrities.
+ He is One of Africa’s Most Stylish Entertainers.