What has made Iyanya so famous? The Nigerian songwriter, singer, and performer rose to popularity after winning the MTN Project Fame West Africa in 2008. He is well-known for his song Kukere. Some of the genres that he performs are Afropop and R&B.
After winning the MTN Project Fame, he released his debut album titled My Story in 2011. He also released the singles No Time and Love Truly to support his first album.
His second album had singles such as Kukere, Ur Waist, Sexy Mama, Jombolo, and Flavour. After this album, he won the Artist of the Year Award at The Headies in 2013.
- Birth name: Iyanya Onoyom Mbuk
- Date of birth: October 31, 1986
- Iyanya age: 34 years (as of 2020)
- Place of birth: Palm Street, Cross River State, Nigeria
- Nationality: Nigerian
- Marital status: Single
- Net worth: $5 million
Iyanya's early life
The celebrated musician was born on Palm Street, Cross River State, Nigeria. His father worked as a forester while his mother was a headmistress.
His mother was the household disciplinarian while his father was cool and gentle. They had two sons, Iyanya and his elder brother.
Unfortunately, his parents passed away in 2008 - his mother died at the age of 42 years while his father was 50 years old at the time of his passing. The musician’s brother also passed away almost the same period that their parents died.
His grandfather was a clergyman in a local church that the musician attended while young. At the age of five, he would sing in the church choir and became the children’s choirmaster. He was very passionate about singing.
After attaining his First School Leaving Certificate and the West African School Certificate, he enrolled in the University of Calabar in Cross River State, from where he graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Business Management before venturing into music in 2008.
The celebrity started working in a hotel and managed to sing Karaoke at a local bar where he was the manager. He began developing and perfecting his vocals at local bars such as Mirage Nite Club, West-Life, and Fiesta Fries Bar.
His musical influences at the time were R. Kelly, an American hip hop artist, and Craig David, a British singer. He got motivated to be a professional musician after admiring Olu Maintain and 2 Face Idibia's lifestyles.
When he started rapping, he used the name Lofty. KCee from KC Presh convinced Iyanya to participate in the 2008 Project Fame West Africa. Fortunately, he won, and his success journey began blossoming.
After this win, he recorded his debut album, My Story, which was released by CN Media Imprint. Later, after visiting Calabar and seeing how people loved the Etighi dance, he decided to write a song that would popularize the dance.
He collaborated with DTunes, a producer, and recorded Kukere, a single that was well-received globally. It was popular in West African countries and the United Kingdom as well.
Later, he released another single, Ur Waist, which features vocals from Emma Nyra.
The singer has performed at various shows. He performed at the AY comedy show in London (2012) and at the Iyanya vs. Desire concert in the UK (2013). He also performed at the African Muzik Magazine launch in Dallas, Texas, on April 12, 2013.
Iyanya songs and albums
He has been very active in the music and entertainment industry, and here are some of his songs:
- My Story – 2009
- Desire – 2013
- Applaudise – 2015
- The Evolution – 2014
- Love Truly – 2009
- No Time (featuring Faze) – 2009
- Iyanya (My Story) – 2010
- Kukere – 2011
- Ur Waist (featuring Emma Nyra) – 2012
- Flavour – 2012
- Sexy Mama (featuring Wizkid) – 2013
- Jombolo (featuring Flavour N’abania) – 2013
- Head Swell – 2013
- She Can Get It – 2013
- Story Story (featuring Oritse Femi) – 2014
- Mr Oreo – 2014
- Ijeoma – 2014
Singles as a featured artist
- Get Wild (N6 featuring Iyanya) – 2012
- Omoge (Slim Joe featuring Iyanya) – 2012
- Everything I Do (featuring Iyanya) – 2012
- Your Desire (Sammy Lee featuring Iyanya) – 2013
- Coupe Decale Remix (Minjin featuring Iyanya) – 2013
- Emujo (DJ Jimmy Jatt featuring Iyanya and 4×4) – 2013
- Fi Mi Le (Lola Rae featuring Iyanya) – 2013
- Felele (Ajemina featuring Iyanya) – 2013
- Feel Alright (Wizzboy featuring Iyanya) – 2016
- Flex (Princeton featuring Iyanya) – 2016
- I’m the One – 2010
- In Love Again – 2010
- South Girl (featuring Duncan Mighty) – 2011
- High (featuring Dammy Krane) – 2013
- Take It Inside (Olamide featuring Iyanya) – 2013
Nominations and awards
His scintillating talent has taken him everywhere, earning him continental recognition and awards. Some of the awards and nominations that he has on his shelf of awards include:
- City People Entertainment Awards (Musician of the Year-Male) - Nominee
- African Muzik Magazine Awards (Best Male West Africa ) - Nominee
- World Music Awards (World’s Best Song -Away, World’s Best Entertainer of the Year 2014, World’s Best Male Artist) - Nominee
- Five Headies Awards (won the Artist of the Year and was nominated as the Best R&B/Pop Album and Album of the Year 2013)
- Nigeria Music Video Awards (nominated for Best High Life Video on Jombolo and Best Use of Visual Effects on Sexy Mama)
- Soul Train Music Awards (nominated for Best International Performance on Ur Waist)
- Channel O Music Video Awards (nominated for Most Gifted Male Video for Flavour)
- Ghana Music Awards (nominated for African Artiste of the Year)
- City People Entertainment Awards (nominated for Musician of the year (Male) and Most Popular Song of the Year for Kukere).
- Nigerian Entertainment Awards (won for the Hottest Single of the Year for Kukere and was nominated for Best R&B/Pop Artist of the Year)
What is Iyanya net worth?
The Nigerian Kukere hitmaker has managed to earn a fortune from his career in the music industry. He has also been a brand ambassador for several companies in Nigeria, thus contributing to his income. As of 2020, his net worth is estimated to be around 5 million dollars.
Apart from his singing career, he is also a brand ambassador. In 2013, he became an ambassador for Solo Phones Nigeria, a company located at Computer Village, Ikeja.
He also signed a one-year deal with Zinox Computers, Nigeria’s first certified branded computers.
The musician stands at a height of 1.80 meters (180 cm) and he weighs 76 kilograms.
Who is Iyanya wife?
The celebrity is not married yet. Here are some of the questions he was asked during an interview with Eve in 2017:
Having turned 31, don't you think you are ripe for marriage?
It's not easy, and if I had my way, this marriage thing would have been history. It's not easy to get my music right and also get married. Everybody may think that I have that bad boy's reputation, but I respect marriage a lot. I don't believe in separation or divorce. That is the reason I don't want to rush into it.
Are you dating?
I am single and searching – a message relayed in one of my tracks Baby Answer off my Signature EP. I may also have a secret marriage because I want my marriage to last. I will keep it off social media as much as I can.
Which is Iyanya new song?
As of 2020, he has released more than five songs, which are Believe, Bella, Room 305, Over You, and Days Gone. Iyanya latest song is Fever, which was released on March 27, 2020.
Iyanya is a Nigerian singer, songwriter, and performer who is famous as the Kukere hitmaker. He has managed to establish a promising career in the music industry. The celebrity is a great inspiration for many upcoming artists globally.
The lady has also served as a permanent secretary in her native Bayelsa State. She is a well-read lady with a lot of achievements to be proud of.