Meet The Fuego Senoras
Rising producer, Abiri Bankole aka Bankyondbeatz has been showered with praises by colleagues in the industry and fans alike for his outstanding body of work – Fuego Senoras which translates to Fire Ladies in Spanish. The all-female EP which was released on Saturday, January 7, 2016 is making great strides already as songs such as Heart Desire featuring DJ Yin, Ago Alago featuring Niniola amongst others are generating radio airplay and wide conversations across social media.
The 10 track project - a first of its kind in the industry- has amassed rave reviews particularly by top entertainment website, Pulse.ng which gave it a 3.5/5 rating and labelled it ‘the perfect experiment; a confident, well-delivered one, for a world that is still finding its way through various sounds. The project delivers a cosmopolitan sound through 7 Nigerian female artistes from diverse parts of the world. In a bid to uncover the beautiful voices featured on the project we have profiled each one of them in this article. So #MeetTheFuegoSenoras.
Lady Donli is a 20 year old Nigerian Neo soul alternative artiste. The US-born singer spent most of her formative years in Abuja. Drawing her musical influences from American soul songstresses - Erykah Badu and Lauryn Hill as well as Nigeria’s songbirds - Nneka and ASA. Lady Donli has created a sound made up of a fusion of R&B and hip-hop. Her musical diversity and her raspy vocals give her a unique and impressive musical spectrum. The UK-based act currently has 3 music projects to her name, the latest being "Wallflower" which is currently receiving rave reviews across board. Featured on the song titled Fale Comigo (Portugese for Talk to Me) on Fuego Senoras, she taps into her inner soul to bring the message of passion home. Twitter: @LadyDonli Instagram: @LadyDonli Soundcloud: LadyDonli
Popularly known as Dj Yin, Oyin Asu-Johnson has been a professional disc jockey for four years running. Influenced by her DJ father while growing up, she became interested in the art and decided to walk down that path. Under the tutelage of Nigeria’s foremost disc jockey, DJ Jimmy Jatt, she has come to blossom in this field. However, singing has always been her first love and she has continuously desired to become a recording artiste someday. Although she has been in and out of the studio, her feature ‘Heart Desire’ on Fuego Senoras is the first song she officially recorded. It’s safe to say she has had an incredible entry into the music industry as an artiste as praises for her effort on Fuego Senoras has been on the rise, even by known names in the industry such as Mr Eazi. Expect more fire from this young lady because in her words ‘this is just the beginning.’ Twitter: @officialdjyin Instagram: @officialdjyin Soundcloud: @officialdjyin
Born into a musically-oriented family, Deena O was able to discover her unique talent at a very early age. Growing up and listening to records from the likes of Erykah Badu, Toni Braxton and Sade Adu, she decided to create a sophisticated sound which she describes as futuristic R&B - a fusion of Neo Soul and Neo Funk. The Nigerian-German talent is however in touch with her fatherland as she cites the legendary Fela Anikulapo Kuti as a major influence on her musical career. The Goethe University final year student and vocal coach is currently working on a project in Rome and in her native Germany, bound to be released in 2017. She’s indeed one to watch out for. Instagram: @Deena_O Soundcloud: @Deena_O
Born and raised in Port Harcourt, Muna has always been a hip-hop princess long before she even clinched the prestigious Most Beautiful Girl in Nigeria crown in 2007. Prior to winning the beauty pageant, she adopted the stage name Babyrella and performed with Port Harcourt-based rap group - The Specimen A.
She also collaborated with Terry da Rapman on the critically acclaimed My PH Girl. Her victory at the MBGN pageant gave her a bigger exposure as she changed her stage name to Muna to work with Nigerian A-listers such as J-Martins, Waje, Psquare and so on.
In June 2010, after years of collaborating with various artistes, the International relations and Diplomacy graduate from the Benson Idahosa University signed a multi-year management contract with Ayo Shonaiya's RMG company and started working on her debut album “The Goddess, The Hustler” The Owerri native’s big break in the music industry came when she featured on the globally televised BET Cypher for the BET Awards in 2011 alongside other Nigerian femcees. Twitter: @munachiabii Instagram: @munachiabii Soundcloud: @munachiabii
Drumroll Records act, Niniola Apata better known by her stage name Niniola is a Nigerian singer and songwriter. The Education graduate from the University of Lagos soared in 2013 after she placed 3rd runner-up at the Project Fame West Africa Season 6. Upon the release of her breakthrough debut single Ibadi and consequent hits such as Soke, Shaba, amongst others, Niniola rose to the upper echelons of the Nigerian music industry with her Afro-house style- a blend of Afrobeat and House music. In 2015, the Lagos-born singer was listed on NotJustOk's "15 Artists to Watch in 2015" and was nominated in the "Most Promising Act to Watch" category at the 2015 Nigeria Entertainment Awards.
The following year, she claimed the Best African Collaboration for her feature on the remix of Mbilo Mbilo by BET Award winner Eddy Kenzo from Uganda. Her musical influences include Dolly Parton, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, The Cranberries, Madonna, Beyoncé and Angelique Kidjo. Twitter: @officialniniola Instagram: @officialniniola Soundcloud: @officialniniola
Elizabeth Agom alias Eli Rossé is a Nigerian female artiste based in Canada with wide variations in her choice of genre. Starting music at the early age of 14, she struck up a music partnership with Bankyondbeatz early on in her career. She also collaborated with other gifted producers both in Nigeria and abroad such as Dj Klem, SPAX, Chillz, Drae, Enibeats and a host of others. Although she has been on and off the music scene, she was granted a momentous opportunity to perform at the Blues-fest Ottawa 2016 - alongside talented native; YUSSO.
The performance earned her an honourable mention among Nigerian music legends - Femi Kuti and Seal, as she became the 3rd Nigerian after them to grace the Canadian capital’s biggest show. The 22-year-old is bursting with high hopes for 2017 and with her cozy feature on Fuego Señoras with Come Through,Eli Rossé has showed she is more than capable to deliver. Twitter: @Eli_Rossevelt Instagram: @elirossevelt Soundcloud: Eli Rossé AT: Talk about A$AP Rocky’s swagger meets the boldness of Azealia Banks mixed with the free spirit of Wiz Khalifa delivered Naija style and you have AT. Born Atuora Erokoro, her lyrical depth and venomous style – a combination of alternative Hip Hop and Afro Hip-Hop makes her the complete package.
Her musical beginning dates back to her birth in Silver Spring, Maryland to spending the first ten years of her life in her hometown of Calabar; and from living in Abuja, going to Loyola Jesuit College and developing her knack for writing poetry and wordplay. Upon completing her Information Systems bachelor degree program at the University of Maryland, AT headed back home to Nigeria to create a pathway in music. Signed under her own label
Another Great Empire, the Abuja based act released her debut project, ‘The Climb’- a 10-track mixtape, which introduced the talented femcee to the Nigerian music industry and the world with Bella Naija’s Onos describing the tape as ‘refreshing quality rap music that will hopefully not only entertain, but inspire and motivate.’ She has gone to release several noteworthy singles including Me and My pistol – a sample of French Montana’s Lock Jaw.
In October 2016, her lyrical prowess caught the attention of Nigerian hip-hop heavyweight, M.I. The Chocolate City CEO met her in person and hailed her as ‘a star and one of the most vicious rappers out right now’ via social media. The straight-to-the-gut lyricist appears on the song titled Pensive on the EP where she expresses her state of mind and dictates the vision for her music. Soundcloud: thisisat Twitter: thisisat Instagram: thisisat In the event, you have not listened to the EP, follow this soundcloud link
Abiri Bankole, popularly known as Bankyondbeatz is a 23 year old music producer born in Lagos state, Nigeria.
His musical sojourn began as far back as primary school. In his words, ‘music has always been a part of me, I started in school as young as 6, playing the drums back then’. The graduate of Business Administration from the prestigious Babcock University then ventured into music production in 2010 upon gaining admission into the university. The Afro-juju lover has ascribed his versatility as a producer to listening to his father’s music repertoire. He says, ‘my father influenced my style of music because he loved almost all the genres of music and that made me understand as well as appreciate all types of sounds.’
This enviable versatility grabbed the attention of the emerging new school scene which had the likes of DRB Lasgidi, LOS and more. Cutting records for this new school bunch, Banky went on to make a name for himself in the underground scene when a freestyle titled Shakara produced by him and laced with vocals by BOJ of DRB Lasgidi went viral after it leaked online. Due to the successful reception of the freestyle, Fresh L and Teezee of DRB added their verses to the song and they released it as an official single of the group. This set the benchmark for more recognition for the rising producer.
Joining forces with another talented producer GMK, and 2 buzzing new school rappers - Ozzy B and Retrodee - Bankyondbeatz formed a formidable movement called Monster Boys. Together they have collaborated with notable names in the industry like Ozzy B, Novakillz, Muna, Tomi Thomas, Reminisce, BOJ of DRB Lasgidi, Flowssick, Rayce and so on. His first ever body of work was released on the 1st of August 2015 titled Legendary Reflections and gathered heat with foremost music website, Pulse NG, describing it as ‘a huge production masterpiece.’
The mixtape produced buzz worthy singles such as Regular Pedestrian, My Body and Soul and Ekomiami featuring industry regulars Flowssick and Novakillz. Following the mild success of his debut mixtape, he then struck a chemistry with Project fame 3rd runner up and Soke hitmaker, Niniola as the pair got into the studio to work.
With over 50 songs to his credit, the producer extraordinaire has carved a niche for himself in the Nigerian music digital space as one of the princes of the new school sound. He recently released a project titled Fuego Senoras– an all-female EP featuring the likes of Niniola, Muna, alongside Nigerian rising stars based in different parts of the world - Lady Donli from the UK, Deena O from Germany alongside Eli from Canada with Nigerian based DJ Yin and femcee, AT.
Follow Bankyondbeatz on Instagram, Twitter and soundcloud @bankyondbeat