For so many, Iyanya is the Kukere crooner, the “Your Waist and “Flavour” hit maker, but this Calabar born star has been on the part to greatness for a very long time. Seeing the way things turned out for him, one can only say it is well deserved.
He started off singing Karaoke in clubs and bars in Calabar. Some of the bars where he was a regular include Fiesta Fries Bar, Mirage Nite Club and West-Life. Just last week during an interview on radio, Iyanya confirmed that it was KC of the KC-Presh group who saw him at a bar while he was showcasing his skill and urged him to come to Lagos where he can make his dream come true. Iyanya also revealed that KC paid his trip to Lagos.
He entered for the 2008 MTN Project fame and won the competition. Iyanya’s passion for music can be seen in the fact that, unlike so many music reality show winner whose fame dwindle at the end of the show, Iyanya quickly launched his debut album titled “My Story.” Not only did he release an album but most tracks on the album showed his versatility as an R&B singer and also as a commercial artiste. The tracks on the album include the self titled track “Iyanya,” an uptempo beat that had its video shot in South Africa, “Love Truly” which is an R&B classic till present day and many other lovely tunes.
Iyanya did not do big numbers on the album and was soon out of the scene but for a while. He returned with “Kukere” in 2012. The song was slow to pick up but when it did, it was massive! The song became famous for the dance step it initiated which is the Calabar famous Etigi dance. He followed the song up with the remix that featured D’Banj, Iyanya got a lot of negative reviews for the song, therefore he quickly followed it up with “Your Waist”, the song which started the controversy of an affair with the female stars he mentioned on the song especially Yvonne Nelson and Tonto Dikeh.
The latest singles brought controversies but it also brought fortune for Iyanya which included a house, a Range Rover Sport, an Aston Martin, his Made Men Music Group label and a double album launch! On the 24th of February, Iyanya launched the “Desire Vs Iyanya” album at the international Conference Centre, Abuja and on the 1st of March, he launched the album at Eko Hotel and Suites, Lagos.
The title of the album according to Iyanya is a reflection of his split personality. While Desire – the stage name he took while doing Karaoke in Calabar – is the soft R&B singer, Iyanya is the commercial artiste whose music is causing controversies, especially amongst ladies.
Iyanya bagged his first award at the 2012 Headies for best Pop Song of the Year, for his song “Kukere.” Prior to the release of his album, he also shot a video with the rave of the moment UK Director for the song “Flavour,” a video that documented his journey since “Kukere” hit the airwaves. He has also been nominated for the upcoming Ghana Music Awards alongside other Nigerian artistes.
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