The Nigerian music industry is undoubtedly one of the most respected on the African continent and beyond, and this is largely as a result of the frequency and consistency with which mega smash hits and chart-toppers get churned out.
However, as much as we celebrate our favourite artistes for bringing their A game everytime and commissioning these masterpieces like it’s nothing, we also must acknowledge and salute the talented music producers who play such a major role in making these bangers what they are.
So, today, NaijaTurnUp brings you our top 10 Nigerian music producers right now. Our list – which was difficult to arrive at because of the impressive number of insanely gifted beat-makers on the radar currently – is largely based on current form and recognition received within the last year.
Having said that, these are our top 10 Nigerian music producers at the moment:
The legally trained “Sess The Prblm Kid” stands tall as one of the best producers in the game and is particularly notorious for being the guy behind a vast majority of Falz the Bahd Guy’s biggest hits.
Having produced “Ello Bae”, “Karishika” and “Soft Work” off the rapper’s sophomore album, “Stories That Touch”, Sess put together a significant part of Falz’s impressive third studio album “27”, receiving critical acclaim especially for tracks such as “Something Light”, “Bahd Baddo Baddest” and “Wehdone Sir”.
Sess is also responsible for the production of “One Kain” off Simi’s impressive “Simisola” album, and packs immense production brilliance on his recently released “PRBLM” mixtape.
9. Maleek Berry
Long before we knew the reigning Soundcity MVPs Best Pop and Best New Act as a recording artiste, we were already jamming to a number of songs such as Sinzu’s “Carolina” and Wande Coal’s “Baby Hello” which Maleek produced.
Apart from being one of Nigeria’s favourite recording artistes at the moment, Maleek has shown his production genius on tracks such as Wande Coal’s “My Way” and “Kilaju” as well as his own songs “The Matter” and “New Bounce” which both feature Wizkid, the latter featuring Phenom as well.
More recently, Maleek has continued to show his production skills on the songs off his critically-acclaimed recently released EPs as well as on other continental big deals such as “Girl Next Door” by Sauti Sol featuring Tiwa Savage.
The Nigerian Entertainment Awards 2015 Music Producer of the Year whose real name is Oluwaseyi Akerele has remained consistent on the Nigerian music scene as one of the best music producers in the industry.
Shizzi is notorious for producing scorchers such as Wizkid’s “Love My Baby” and “Show You The Money”, Davido’s “Dami Duro” and “Skelewu”, and Olamide’s “Who You Epp”.
The gifted music producer has more recently earned production credits on firecrackers such as Timaya’s “Kekwanu” featuring Davido, “Gwara Gwara” by L.A.X, Wizkid’s “Everytime” featuring Future, and Davido’s “Like Dat”.
The highly sought-after magical “pon pon” sound became such a massive phenomenon and trended for such a long time largely because of music producer Krizbeatz.
Apart from being responsible for Lil Kesh’s “Shele Gan Gan” as well as Skales’ “Booty Language” and “Temper” featuring Burna Boy, Krizbeatz has also cooked up other major hits such as Seyi Shay’s “Weekend Vibes” and Runtown’s “For Life”.
The gifted music producer recently released his own self-produced tracks such as “Erima” featuring Tekno and Davido, as well as “Boss Whine” featuring Skales, rounding up a stellar 2017 with the successful release of his “ADM” album.
The critically-acclaimed music producer whose real name is Ben’Jamin Obadje is unarguably one of Nigeria’s most gifted beat makers.
Over the years, Spellz has cooked up beats for some of our favourite artistes such as Wizkid, Chuddy K, 9ice, Banky W, D’Prince, Davido, Tiwa Savage and Dammy Krane.
The 323 Entertainment signed producer is particularly notorious for the production of Skales’ “Give Me Love” featuring Tekno, “Iskaba” by Wande Coal and DJ Tunes, Tiwa Savage’s “Ma Lo” featuring Wizkid and MC Galaxy’s “Showers of Blessings”.
5. Tekno Miles
The talented singer, songwriter, dancer and all-round brilliant performer is one of the few successful recording artistes in Nigeria who can boast of being a gifted music producer as well.
Tekno has been responsible for major hits over the fast few years such as Victoria Kimani’s “Show”, “Bum Bum” by Diamond Platnumz featuring Iyanya, Flavour’s “Catch You” and “Boss” by Ice Prince.
Apart from producing the vast majority of his biggest hits such as “Rara”, the self-acclaimed Slim Daddy has scored major points for producing mega firecrackers for his contemporaries. Davido’s “If”, arguably the biggest song of 2017, particularly comes to mind.
One of the most consistent and most sought-after music producers on the Nigerian music scene right now, the incredibly gifted Kiddominant has continued to thrill us all with his brilliant efforts.
2017 was a particularly great year for the DMW affiliated music producer who knocked things out of the park with his production credits on Davido’s “Fall” and Mayorkun’s “Mama”, undoubtedly two of the biggest songs of the year, and wrapped things up rather nicely with Dammy Krane’s “Your Body”.
There really isn’t any gainsaying the fact that Kiddominant was significantly responsible for the massive success that Davido and DMW in general recorded last year.
3. Fresh VDM
The second you hear “Damn Fresh On The Beat” on any song at all, you instantly know you’re in for a treat from the DMW in-house producer, Fresh VDM.
The talented music producer whose real name is Bello Emmanuel Adeshina has continued to build himself a stellar production catalogue, having cooked up beats for likes of Davido, Olamide, Burna Boy, Mayorkun, Dremo and Ycee.
Fresh, who seems to only get better with each song he produces, is responsible for smash hits such as Davido’s “FIA”, DMW’s “Mind” and the most recent highly-anticipated mega collaboration between Cassper Nyovest and Davido, “Check on You”.
If this were a list of our top 10 most consistent Nigerian music producers of all time, then Masterkraft would most likely be taking up our top spot, having been responsible for an unbelievable number of hits that have rocked our airwaves since as far back as 2012.
From “Fine lady” by Lynxxx featuring Wizkid, to the remix of Flavour’s “Kwarikwa” featuring Fally Ipupa to “Girl” by Bracket featuring Wizkid, to a great deal of E.M.E. songs, Masterkraft has been fully responsible.
The iconic music producer has recently worked with Wizkid on mega hits “Medicine” and “Odoo”, and particularly rocked 2017 with his production genius on Mayorkun’s “Sade”, Vector’s “Adurah” and Tekno’s “Yawa”.
In addition to the major production credits the gifted producer has on Flavour’s “Ijele” album and Banky W’s “Songs About U”, Masterkraft commission his own body of work last year, an album tagged “Unlimited” with hits songs such as “I Go Dance” and “Yapa” which both feature Reekado Banks, and Wizkid and CDQ as well on the latter.
1. Young John
Occupying our number one position on this top 10 is the multi-award-winning Young John the Wicked Producer, the YBNL affiliated beat-maker who seems to have the formula for turning virtually every single song he works on to an instant smash hit.
Apart from scoring major points on Lil Kesh’s “Rora” and “Baby Favour”, Olamide’s “Love No Go Die” and 9ice’s “Living Things”, Young John practically dominated the year 2017 with his production credits on Olamide’s phenomenal “Wo!!”.
From what we’ve heard, “Wo!!” inspired the release of Olamide’s 7th studio album “Lagos Nawa!” which Young John brilliantly produced almost single-handedly.
The reigning Soundcity MVPs Best Music Producer kicked off his 2018 campaign by cooking up Olamide’s fiery street anthem “Science Student”, and if his antecedents are anything to go by, then we’re certain there’s so much more to come from the gifted beat-maker.
Sarz, D’Tunes, Adey, Del’B, and Don Jazzy.
There’s only so many spots to fill on a top 10 list as ours, so even though these celebrated music producers didn’t make our cut this time, we recognize and acknowledge their undeniable music production genius as well.
Is any of our music industry’s many talented producers who – in your opinion – deserve to have made our top 10 not on the list? Let us know in the comments.