The Afrobeats genre has not only revolutionized the global music scene but has also provided a platform for exceptionally talented producers to rise to stardom as both hitmakers behind the scenes and front-facing musical sensations.
These visionary producers have seamlessly transitioned from crafting infectious beats to taking center stage as superstar musicians, showcasing their multifaceted talents.
In this article, we celebrate 10 Afrobeats producers who have successfully made this extraordinary journey, leaving a lasting impact on the music world.
1. Young Jonn
John Saviours Udomboso, widely known as Young Jonn, is a prime example of a talented Afrobeats producer who transitioned into a bona fide superstar musician. Starting his career as a producer, he has produced different hit songs. He is behind most beats that top artistes morphed into catchy tunes. Young Jonn’s exceptional talent as a producer caught the attention of the music industry. Over time, he evolved into a singing artiste blending Afrobeats, and amapiano with pop influences. He has scored hit songs like; Xtra Cool, Dada, Aquafina, and many others in his catalog.
2. Maleek Berry
Maleek Berry initially made waves as a prolific producer, crafting hits for artistes like Wizkid and Davido. However, he soon stepped into the spotlight as a solo artiste, captivating audiences with his unique blend of Afrobeats and contemporary R&B, earning critical acclaim for his distinct sound. He is the mastermind behind Eko Miami, Kontrol, Bend It, My Way, and many others.
Augustine Miles Kelechi, known as Tekno, is another remarkable talent who successfully made the transition from being a behind-the-scenes producer to a celebrated Afrobeats artiste. Tekno’s captivating voice and ability to create infectious beats have established him as a prominent figure in the industry. After the successful transition, he scored hit songs like Diana, Pana, Yawa, etc.
Douglas Jack Agu, aka Runtown, first garnered attention as a producer but soon found his calling as a singer-songwriter. His hit single “Gallardo” marked his breakthrough into the limelight, and he has since become known for his versatile musical style that fuses Afrobeats with hip-hop and R&B. He run the town in 2018 with hit songs ranging from ‘Mad Over You’ to ‘For Life’.
Juls, whose real name is Julian Nicco-Annan, is a Ghanaian-British producer who gained recognition for his unique production style that blends Afrobeats with elements of reggae and dancehall. He has not only produced for various artistes like Wizkid and Mr Eazi but has also released his music, showcasing his artistic versatility. Listen to ‘Oshey’ and experience the superstar of a musician that Juls is.
Sunday Ginikachukwu Nweke, professionally known as Masterkraft, is a master of his craft when it comes to music production. He is a prolific Nigerian producer who has worked with numerous A-list artistes. While primarily recognized for his production skills, he has also stepped into the limelight with his songs, displaying his talent as both a producer and a musician.
Phillip Kayode Moses, popularly known as Pheelz, stands out as one of the top buzzing artistes of Afrobeats presently. He started his career as a producer under YBNL Nation, where he created hits for artistes like Olamide. In a bold move, he transitioned from producing to recording his music, proving that his creative prowess extends beyond the studio. ‘Finesse’ is a hit and ‘Electricity’ is an even more electrifying hit track from the producer-turned-singer.
From ‘Sarz on the beat’ to ‘Sarz on the Mic’, Osabuohien Osaretin, better known as Sarz, is a Nigerian record producer renowned for his unique production style that blends Afrobeats with electronic dance music. While his production credits are numerous, Sarz has also ventured into the spotlight as a musician, releasing tracks that reflect his experimental approach.
Hailing from Nigeria, Killertunes (Otaniyen-Uwa Daniel) made a name for himself as a producer, creating hits for artistes across the Afrobeats spectrum. As he transitioned into an artiste, his fusion of Afrobeats and other global sounds garnered attention, showcasing his musical evolution. Since he started making music, he has been killing it back-to-back.
10. Del B
Adekunle Adegbite, known as Del B, is a Nigerian producer who has contributed to some of Afrobeats’ biggest hits. Beyond his production skills, Del B has stepped onto the stage as a singer, leveraging his deep understanding of melodies and rhythms to craft his own unique musical identity.
The journey from being an accomplished Afrobeats producer to a celebrated superstar musician is a testament to the immense talent and creative vision these individuals possess. Each of these 10 producers-turned-musicians has left an indelible mark on the music industry, enriching the global soundscape with their unique blend of beats, melodies, and cultural influences. Their success stories inspire aspiring artistes and producers to explore their creativity fearlessly, showing that the path to greatness is often paved with innovative choices, reinvention, evolution, and unwavering passion.