David Adedeji Adeleke, popularly known by his stage name Davido, was born in November 21, 1992 to the family of Chief Deji and Late Mrs. Vero Adeleke in Atlanta, Georgia. His father, Chief Deji Adeleke is a very wealthy business man in Nigeria(hence his popular nickname “Omo Baba Olowo, meaning ‘Child of a rich man’), while his mother late Dr. Vero Adeleke, was a university lecturer.
Davido and his family relocated back to Nigeria from America and being a young man from a wealthy family, Davido attended elite schools including British International School and Babcock University, where he’s studying Business Administration Part-time.
Though he came from a very wealthy family, Davido decided to pursue his dream which has always been to make music. He started singing at the tender age of 11. Davido will later admit that his love for music came from his late mother who passed away in 2003. Losing his mother has been the most traumatic experience he has had. He said: “…she’s the reason I do what I do…. she loved to entertain and I plan on carrying that legacy…”.
At the age of 18, Davido set up a record label called HKN Music, jointly owned by him and his older brother, Adewale Adeleke. In 2011, 18 year old Davido released his debut album ‘Omo Baba Olowo’, while on May 7, 2011, Davido produced and released his first song “Back When”. The song served as the album’s lead single and received frequent airplay. In October 2011, Davido released ‘Dami Duro’ which immediately became a hit! ‘Dami Duro’ topped music charts, and that was the song that really brought him into public consciousness. The music video for “Dami Duro” was released on January 8, 2012. It was shot and directed in Lagos by Clarence Peters.
In 2013, Davido began recording his second studio album. On February 25, 2013, he released “Gobe” as the upcoming album’s lead single. The song was produced by Shizzi. The second single from the album was “One of a Kind” which was released on May 13, 2013. “Skelewu” was the third single from that album and it turned out to be one of the most popular hit songs in Nigeria in 2013. It was ranked 5th on the list of the top 10 songs of 2013. The song also peaked at number 1 on Afribiz’s Top 100 chart. There was a little controversy after the release of the ‘Skelewu’ music video. Shortly after the release of the Sesan Ogunro-directed video, Davido took to Twitter to debunk the video and said that someone had betrayed him by releasing it. He also said he’ll re-shoot the video with Moe Musa, a UK based music video director. This caused a mild drama in the entertainment scene as Sesan considered Davido’s declaration immature. Sesan said that Davido was satisfied with his contributions to the music video and that it would be immature for Davido and his management to release inaccurate statements in order to defame his brand. On October 21, 2013, the official music video for the single, shot and directed in London by Moe Musa, was uploaded onto YouTube.
A dance competition with a cash prize of $3000 (N480,000) was held days after the release of the song. Davido uploaded an instructional dance video onto YouTube and asked fans to upload videos of themselves dancing to “Skelewu”. On October 10, 2013, Davido announced that Bello Moshood Abiola had won the competition.
Davido released hit song “Aye” on February 2, 2014. The song was produced by T Spice, while the music video was directed by Clarence Peters. Shortly after that, precisely April 30, 2014, Davido released single “Tchelete (Goodlife)” featuring South African duo Mafikizolo.
Being a very young, handsome and successful artiste, Davido is NOT controversy-free! In February 2012, 19 year old Davido trended worldwide on Social media; with thousands commenting on the pictures showing him in bed with 18-year-old undergraduate Sonia Jumbo.
Different images showed were Sonia was fondling and kissing him while he was asleep. In one, she’s seen licking his tattoo!
In mid-2014, Davido and fellow music artiste, Wizkid started throwing mysterious jabs at each other online! Davido and Wizkid are among the biggest music artistes in Nigeria and they both have an identical fan-base. The beef seems to have started when Wizkid posted a coded message on his instagram page. Davido took offense at that and also posted a message which was apparently directed back at Wizkid.
The music heavywights continued to trade coded words back and forth, though not calling the other person by name. Insiders allege that there has been a superiority battle between them. The two have finally settled their differences though!
He has also been criticized for being in the habit of flaunting his wealth and possessions!
Davido is known to be very funny and easy-going. He has worked with numerous music artistes including Naeto C, Wizkid, Ice Prince, 2face, Olamide, Lynxxx and Skales. He is also the winner of many local and international awards, including Best International Act at the BET Awards and Artist of the year at the MTV Africa Music Video Awards! Davido is also an ambassador to some top organizations.
There’s no doubt, Davido has written his name in the sands of time at such a young age! Nigeria’s music history cannot be written without Davido’s name featuring in it prominently.