Wande Coal: Nigeria’s King Of Vocals
Wande Coal – a prominent figure in Nigeria’s music industry; widely recognized for his killer vocals – is an artist with a strong and powerful talent that cannot be ignored. With hundreds of musicians sweeping across the country every now and then, Wande Coal deserves, and has a built his reputation as an artist with a supernatural musical talent.
Arguably one of the best musicians in Nigeria, no one has had a bigger vocal impact or held more musical significance than Wande Coal. Long before Wande Coal – the young, wonderful musical sensation, there was Oluwatobi Oluwande Funto Ojosipe, born to a businessman and a school teacher, Mr and Mrs. Ojosipe who hail from Ijebu, Ogun State. The first of two sons in his family, he attended University of Lagos (UNILAG). Now 33 years old, the sky has gone beyond being the limit for him.
Growing up as a child Wande not only had an interest in music, he also always saw his strength in dancing. He definitely believed he could out dance Michael Jackson one day. Recalling himself being in the choir in an interview with Guardian Life, Wande says “I had to dance in front of the whole school because I had to build my rep; people never knew I could dance so I gave it a chance on stage.” This master dancer and beatboxer joined his church choir where he was able to discover and express his talent more.
A good-looking man with a bright, lively and cheerful character, and a sense of humour that is infectious, Wande Coal embodies the adequate features of a musician. He is highly credited for being able to pull a crowd and connect with his fans.
Wande Coal’s musical path stems from his encounter with Don Jazzy and D’banj who were both members of the record label, Mo’ Hits Records. The two had graced the stage of UNILAG with an entertainment night and Wande Coal had the opportunity to pitch himself to them. Interestingly though, he explains that it wasn’t a meeting planned to market himself, he said “I was in UNILAG when Don Jazzy and D’banj came to my school to perform and a couple of friends and I just wanted to entertain them backstage before they went on stage, so we started singing and my life became so serious after that.” His acapella freestyle to them created a ‘love at first sight’ moment for the Mo’Hits members which gave birth to the Wande Coal we all recognize today.
Once he began making music with the Mo’Hits crew, his vocal talent became the talk of the town, even to the extent where people would say he was the only one with the obvious talent in Mo’Hits Records. “He has a heavenly voice, I’m sure angels bow when he sings”, “It would be such an uplifting experience for anyone who hears his raw, unedited voice”, “Women tremble at the sound of his music”, “Men play smooth operator with the lyrics Wande writes”, – his fans continue to proclaim.
Wande Coal’s vocals are clearly unrivalled! It is pleasing to the mind and soul and has earned him the title as the greatest voice in Nigerian pop music. His first single Ololufe is considered one of the greatest love songs in the Nigerian music industry. The song is one that gives a woman utmost assurance of a man’s love for her. His first album Mushin to Mo’Hits released in 2009, quickly became internationally recognized and was an album telling his story of rising from nothing substantial to becoming successful and making a name for himself.
In 2008, he won the award for Next Rated Artist at the World Hip Hop Awards. Ten years after, it is evident that Wande Coal continues to live up to that glory as he releases hits upon hits, and has featured in songs that are regarded as worldwide hits.
Wande Coal has had his high and low moments. The scandal of 2010 which kept him out of the music scene for three years did not silence his voice. He came back with a bang! It was unheard of, that a musician in Nigeria can go off the radar for that long and still manage to come back up and stay relevant. Six years after his debut album, he released a second album, Wanted. This album was a strong comeback to the music industry for Wande Coal and is still regarded as the bestselling album in Nigeria with millions of copies sold.
His melodious voice is one that can never escape the hearts of his fans. A decade into his career, Wande Coal’s voice is causing earthquakes, selling out shows and his name is still a household name, seen as one of the best.
Wande Coal is not a mere diamond, he is indeed the ‘Black Diamond’ of Africa. Black diamonds are the toughest jewels to find as they have only been discovered in two locations in the world: Brazil and Central Africa. It is time for Wande Coal’s fans to give him an undivided attention and appreciation. His voice comes with a soul and substance able to change a listener. His journey through life resonates through each song and his vocals help in this storytelling. Wande Coal has a special and unbeaten vocal talent, being tied to this is what profoundly makes his entire career, fan base and image special.