Hadiza Blell, better known by her stage name, Di’Ja, is a Sierra Leonean Nigerian singer, visual artist, and songwriter. She is currently signed to Mavin Records.
In 2009, she released her first single “Rock Steady” which was nominated for Best Urban/R&B Single at the 2009 Canadian Radio Music Awards. Also, she won the Best New Artist award at the 2008 Beat Music Awards.
Her early life and background
Di’Ja has lived in Nigeria, Sierra Leone, the United States, and Canada. Her mother is from Kaduna Nigeria, while her father is from Sierra Leone. At a young age, Di’Ja committed herself to academics and earned a double degree in Biology and Psychology. After earning the aforementioned degrees, Di’Ja became passionate about music, art, and philosophy.
Her passion for music had something to do with her parents’ collection of old CDs; her mum especially and she thinks it’s innate.
According to her, her parents are the amazing people who contributed in shaping who she is today through the upbringing they gave her. Her childhood was colourful, she says, which has translated into her life at this stage always being colourful. She has an older brother who’s reportedly her best friend. Family, for her, is a priority.
Di’Ja grew up in Kaduna, which is always home for her, and is also where it all started for her. She moved to further her education, then got called back home again. Her professional music career started when a friend, Aman Manhas, signed her up for a singing competition in Canada, called the Beat Music Awards. She never looked back since.
CAREER AND LIFE
Her music career started in 2008 and in 2009, she released her first single “Rock Steady” which was nominated for Best Urban/R&B Single at the 2009 Canadian Radio Music Awards. Moreover, she won the Best New Artist award at the 2008 Beat Music Awards which was quite a boost to her career back then in Canada.
In 2012, Di’Ja released several singles including “Dan’Iska (Rudebwoy)”, “Hold On (Ba Damuwa)” and “How Can We Be Friends”. She was in Canada when she released these songs, and the tracks showed her talent to the fans she had then.
Through her manager, she met Don Jazzy. She says she didn’t expect to meet the Nigerian maestro producer. When they got to the studio, she was sharing her songs with some of the guys around when Don Jazzy walked in. “It was both exciting and scary” she says. Don Jazzy listened to two of her songs and liked the songs.
She was technically in the pipeline for consideration for 8 months. They worked and created songs together to see the chemistry between the rest of the crew and her. After Don Jazzy confirmed her talent he officially signed her to the record label.
On February 14, 2014, Don Jazzy announced the addition of Di’Ja to Mavin Records. Her first official single under Mavin Records was also released on February 14, 2014. The song, which is titled “Yaro”, is an up-tempo celebration of love and commitment against all odds. It infuses Hausa and Krio dialects in honour of her Nigerian and Sierra Leonean roots.
In May 2014, Di’Ja was featured on “Dorobucci” alongside label mates Don Jazzy, Dr SID, Tiwa Savage, D’Prince, Korede Bello and Reekado Banks. In May 2014, an animated video was released for “Dorobucci”. As of 21 June 2014, “Dorobucci” has received over 12 million downloads since its release. Di’Ja was also featured on “Arise” alongside Don Jazzy and Reekado Banks.
Later the same year she was featured alongside other mavin crew in hit songs like; Adaobi, as well as Looku Looku.
In December 2014, she released her biggest hit single so far “Aww,” a song which was quite accepted by a lot of hip-hop fans in Nigeria and Africa. The single topped so many charts as her fan base increased. The video gained a lot of views on youtube and the single is considered among the top hit singles of 2015.
Di’ja has since then gone on many concert tour outside Nigeria, making 2015 a great one for her music career.
Awards and Endorsements
Di’Ja has been nominated for a couple of awards and has succeeded in winning some; She won the 2008 Beat Music Awards under the Best New Artist category.
She has also signed a multi-million Naira endorsement deal with telecom giant GLO.
Di’ja Husband, Son
Dija was in a relationship for a long time, unbeknownst to a lot of her fans. In 2015, however, she got married to her sweetheart Rotimi and in 2016, the two were blessed with a baby boy. The talented singer continues to keep her family out of the limelight, however.