Nigeria has a depot of talent and little wonder it’s the entertainment capital of Africa. This has manifested in the astronomical rise of music artists all over the country, and Nigeria is now exporting musical talents to the rest of the world.
The year 2021 so far, has been one year full of albums coming from new kids on the block and established acts solidifying their feet on the ground. It’s just the first half of the year, and we’ve had more than a dozen music projects rolled out from various quarters of the Nigerian music scenery.
All of the albums released are cool, massive and worth their salts, however in this article, we highlight 10 of the finest that have reigned supreme and fans are yet to get enough of.
In the light of that we present to you,
The Top 10 Nigerian Albums of the First Half of 2021
Note: This list follows an ascending order beginning from the first album released in the earlier months of the year.
1. The Gospel of the Kingdom Album – Dunsin Oyekan
The year began on a gospel note with highly revered and anointed gospel singer, Dunsin Oyekan dropping his album “The Gospel of the Kingdom” in January. Housing 16 glorious tracks, Dunsin showed us another dimension of the kingdom with his ministrations. Known to always deliver spiritual sounds and revelations, he served the body of Christ with the right tunes to transport us to the throne of grace where the deep calleth unto the deep. Dunsin blessed and built up the faith of believers with his album which served as the perfect entry for the year in an apostolic fashion.
2. Somewhere Between Beauty and Magic (SBBM) Album – Joeboy
On February 4, 2021, emPawa Music Act, Joeboy debuted with his Somewhere Between Beauty and Magic Album as he validates his artistry in the industry. After claiming a favorite position on the entertainment spotlight with his hit single “Nobody”, it was clear as crystal that Joeboy was here to stay. It became clearer with the release of his album which housed 14 solid tracks and had the production credits going to some of the best in the industry like Killertunes, MoGBeatz and a few others. The album was the talk of the town in all of February.
3. The Prince I Became Album – Ric Hassani
Just when we thought we’ve been too focused on some generic genres of music, same February, Nigerian soul singer and musical fashionista, Ric Hassani surprised us and came through with his sophomore album; The Prince I Became. But he first stole the show with the release of his viral and unusual single dubbed “Thunder Fire You”. The title was all that was needed for the single to trend across Nigeria and seep beyond its shores. It highlighted the brokenness of a lover boy and served as a musical succor to the heartbroken during the period. Ric came with the full package in his album which was a blend of afrobeats, R&B, Pop, Soul, Afrofusion and a few other genres. It happens to the be richest album in the list going by the diversity of genres featured. And then it had 17 whopping tracks, one of the longest in the list as well. Ric served us hot and some fans are yet to recover, especially from the “Thunder”.
4. Wondaaland Album – Teni
And here we have the darling of all darlings in the adorable Teni Akpata who came through in March with her afropop album dubbed “Wondaaland” where she takes us to her wonderland and we are yet to return. Housing same 17 tracks just like Ric, Teni blessed fans with her massive creativity and proved her mettle in the industry. She showed that there were more where the singles “Case”, “Askamaya”, “Power Rangers”, and “Uyo Meyo” came from. One of the most scintillating tracks on the album comes in the triple X single which is actually titled “XXXL”. She featured no other act on the album save for Davido which she accosted in a dramatic fashion and demanded for a collaboration in the single “For You”.
5. Already Won Album – Tim Godfrey
Sensational and energetic gospel singer, Tim Godfrey dropped the most prominent for the year in the gospel category with his “Already Won” album in March. The album reflected his sheer grace, talent and musical anointing in all 14 tracks. He featured some of the gospel bigwigs in the album’s tracks like Tope Alabi, Daddy G.O, Pastor E.A Adeboye, the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, and J.J Hairston. He and his Xtreme Crew outdid themselves in this album and it’s one of the finest to bless the gospel community in a long time.
6. The Prodigal Album – Mr P
Mr P was the first to open the new month of April 2021, with his “The Prodigal” album marking his verification as a solo artists after the splitting of the Psquare group. They were the most successful and most renowned musical duo in all of Africa prior to the split. However, both went separate ways and have to prove themselves as individual acts in the industry. Mr P was the first to prove his survival ingenuity and rare musical talent with his maiden album as a solo artists. The album housed 16 whooping tracks featuring other music stars like Wande Coal, Tiwa Savage, Simi, Tamar Braxton, and a few others.
7. Rum and Boogie Album – Peruzzi
Just when fans were yet to digest the full course meal served to them by Mr P, Peruzzi came through the following week of same April with his “Rum and Boogie” electrifying album. Peruzzi knocked himself out on the album delivering all 20 tracks in bravado fashion and awing every listener. The album was divided into two sections, the first 10 were named “Rum” and the remaining 10, the “Boogie”. This album garnered tons of reviews for the whole of April and it spilled over into the month of May as fans couldn’t get enough of it. It was Peruzzi’s sophomore album and he gave more valid reasons to be trusted with some good delivery.
8. S3X Over Love Album – Blaqbonez
Chocolate City self-acclaimed Africa’s best rapper, Blaqbonez made the headlines with his “S3X Over Love” album delivering 14 tracks in all and identifying himself on the billboards chart. His album was quite the banger as it featured some reigning stars like Joeboy, Cheque, AQ, 1Da Banton, Tiwa Savage, Laycon, Buju, and Nasty C from South Africa. The rapper would later reward himself with a new car for the good job done on the album, and jibe at those who didn’t believe in him.
9. Shall We Begin Album – Laycon
When we thought April has served us more than we deserved, it coughed out the last of what it had on it’s very last day with Big Brother Naija 2020 winner, Laycon coming through with his official debut album “Shall We Begin”. And of course we began a jolly ride through the sensational tracks numbering up to 12 and featuring artists like Mayorkun, Joeboy, Terri, YKB, and Teni. He had previously dropped two tracks off the album which includes “Wagwam” and “Fall For Me” featuring YKB. It was epic and his fan base cruised with this album to high heavens even the rapper was surprised he did that great.
10. UY Scuti Album – Olamide
And finally, the last of them in June which certainly is anything but the least showed up in “UY Scuti” from Olamide. The album is still the rave of the moment. It housed 10 different tracks and showed how one of Africa’s finest indigenous rappers has evolved over the years into a colossal music entity. Olamide flirted with different genres on a love themed album. It has its most outstanding track in “Rock”, we can’t help but admire the dexterity and significance of a rap baron like him in the industry. Olamide served us well in the album and it’s the satiation for everyone.
Other notable mentions include;
- King Perryl – Citizen of the World Album
- Ric Hassani – The Prince I Became (Deluxe Edition) Album
- Moses Bliss – Too Faithful Album
- Nathaniel Bassey – Halleluyah Again Album
- AQ – Golden Album