The scene in Jos is far tamer than the entertainment industry capital, Lagos.
So what is it about Jos, the capital of Plateau state, that makes it a talent factory of sorts, churning out some of the best musicians Nigeria has come to know?
Many familiar with Jos will point to Baptist High School (BHS), a school which served as breeding ground for many artistes.
While not every entertainer with roots in Jos sprung from ‘Babby High’, many of them had ties to the secondary school.
Here are eight top Nigerian artistes that have roots in the ‘music incubator’.
In 1998, Jude Abaga, popularly known as M.I, graduated from BHS.
Before his graduation, Jude, with support from his parents, was heavily involved in music — developing and honing his rap skills.
After an uncompleted degree at Calvin College, Michigan, M.I returned to Nigeria in 2003 to kick-start his career at home.
The rapper, who is currently the CEO of Chocolate City, has sure come a long way since ‘Crowd Mentality’.
Jesse Jagz, MI’s younger brother, also graduated from BHS a few years after the senior Abaga.
Jagz recorded his first album –which was never released– with a group named Gospel Insanity.
Thereafter, the ‘Violation’ rapper started producing beats professionally and formed another group, Eleven Thirty, which quickly became a huge success in Jos.
In 2004, Jesse along with M.I. started Inner Hub Studios. By 2006, Jesse started a solo career with a debut single ‘Africa’.
Emmanuel Nwosu, popularly known as E-Kelly, is a prolific producer who is also an alumnus of BHS.
Born and raised in Jos, he has production credits to songs like ‘So Inspired’ by Waje (ft Muna), ‘Wiz Party’ by Wizkid, ‘Chairman’ by M.I., and ‘Can You Do It’ by Naeto C.
Aramide Sarumoh, better known as Aramide, is an alumnus of BHS.
In 2006, she contested as part of a group on ‘Star Quest’ where they emerged third runner-up.
Because of their mutual background, Aramide regularly works with friend SizzlePro, a producer who worked on her debut album ‘Suitcase’.
Aramide won best vocal performance for her song ‘Iwo Nikan’ at The Headies Award 2015 and best alternative song with ‘Fun Mi Lowo Mi’ in 2018.
SizzlePro, an alumni of BHS, has been at the helm of a chunk of the annual H.S.G.M albums that have come out of the high school.
He has been instrumental to the production of songs and albums by Waje, Aramide, and Omawumi, among others.
Panshak ‘Ice Prince’ Zamani, whose career is heavily associated with the Abaga brothers, had his music start in his secondary school St. Murumba College in Jos.
In 2002, Zamani and a few of his friends created a music group known as ‘Ecomog’ squad which dissolved after a year.
It wasn’t until 2004 when he met M.I. that ‘Loopy Crew’ was formed. The music collective consisted of Jesse Jagz, Ruby, Lindsey, Eve, and Taz.
Like Ice Prince, Peter and Paul Okoye attended St. Murumba College in Jos.
The twin brothers joined their school music and drama club where they began singing, dancing, and mimicking songs by MC Hammer, Bobby Brown and Michael Jackson.
Although the duo is currently broken up, P-Square enjoyed a decade of success with hit songs like ‘Personally’, ‘Get Squared’, ‘Bank Alert’, and many more.
Ruby Gyang did not only have her start in Jos but she is indigenous to Plateau state.
The ‘Good Man’ singer’s journey to stardom begun when she formed Loopy Music alongside M.I, Ice Prince and Jesse Jagz.
Ruby is currently signed to Chocolate City.
Did we leave any artiste off the list? Let us know.
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