Ruger: Talented Nigerian artistes not up to five



By Taiwo Okanlawon

Popular singer Michael Adebayo Olayinka, aka Ruger, has claimed that Nigeria currently has less than five talented musicians.

According to him the  ‘Asiwaju’ hitmaker, most Nigerian artists are just singing for “cruise”.

Speaking in a recent interview with Cool FM, Lagos, Ruger stated that those of them that are talented and doing proper music are not up to five.

However, he didn’t name the only talented Nigerian artists in his opinion, or where he is on the list.

“I’m not the biggest artiste in Nigeria but talent-wise, I’m standing somewhere there. We are not up to 5,” he said.

“I won’t say where I am on the list but I’m there. It’s not up to five. Most people are just singing for cruise but we [the talented artists], we make music.”

Ruger said he was shocked to find out that he has a large following in Israel.

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He said he sold out a 7,000-capacity venue in the country.

Ruger recently announced his new record label named ‘Blown Boy Entertainment’ in JanuaryHe also adjusted his profile names on social media to reflect the new label.

In an Instagram post, he said he was grateful to Jonzing World and D’Prince but it was time for him to take a bet on himself.

In 2021, Ruger rose to stardom under Jonzing World, a label owned by Nigerian singer D’Prince, which is an affiliate of Don Jazzy’s Mavin Records.

Ruger has won several awards for his craft. In same 2021, he won the AFRIMA best newcomer award, and also the best new artiste category at the 2023 Soundcity MVP Awards.

Ruger has also swept some of the major awards, including the Best New act in Africa at the 2022 prestigious Afrima Awards.

He also has two extended plays (EPs) to his name titled ‘Pandemic’ (2021) and ‘Second Wave’ (2022).

On 16 November 2022, Ruger returns with a new chest-thumping tune capsule, consisting of two songs titled ‘Red Flags’ & Asiwaju, which upon release trended on every social media platforms.

Asiwaju peaked at number 1 on Nigeria’s Apple Music Top Songs chart and spent a record-breaking one month in the history of the chart.

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