Dbanj whose full name is Oladapo Daniel Oyebanjo is a Nigerian celebrity who has earned his stripes as a singer-songwriter, skilled harmonica player and entrepreneur.
Dbanj was born on June 9, 1980 in Zaria, Kaduna State to a military officer father and a church dignitary mother.
He was enrolled in a military elementary school at the age of 11 as his father fully intended him to pursue a career in the military. He however left the school after three years, joining another military school (Nigerian Navy Secondary School) where he then completed his secondary school education.
He was introduced to the harmonica by his older brother, Femi Oyebanjo who tragically lost his life in a plane crash.
He struggled with his parents for approval on his desired path of music, but after constant strikes in Lagos State University (where he was studying Mechanical Engineering at the time) drove him to the U.K to complete his university study, he abandoned the pursuit for a degree and went at it anyway.
Dbanj adopted his stage name from a combination of his first and last name. He broke into music when he traveled to the U.K and met with JJC and the 419 squad, forming an alliance with them and Don Jazzy, which the two (Dbanj and Don Jazzy) would later break away from to start the Mo Hits group.
He broke into the Nigerian music scene with his 2005 album, No Long Thing and immediately started a rise to fame that would inspire many who came behind him. His hit single, Tongolo from that first album was a crowd favorite and cemented his future well-known persona as the ‘kokomaster’.
He followed that up with another album in 2006, ‘Rundown Funk U Up’ and one in 2008 ‘Entertainer’. He also featured on the Mo Hits group collective debut, ‘Curriculum Vitae’.
In June 2011 Dbanj was signed to Kanye West’s G.O.O.D Music record label and a couple of months later, the announcement of Mo Hits disbandment came through. Dbanj went on to form DB records and signed his brother Kayswitch alongside two producers, Jaysleek and Deevee to the label.
AWARDS AND ACHIEVEMENTS
Dbanj is ranked as the richest solo musician in Nigeria according to T.I.N magazine and he has a long list of endorsements that include; Ciroc, Beats by Dre, Bank of Industry (BOI) and SLOT.
He is also not lacking on the awards front as he has carted off a Best African Act award at the Europe Music Awards 2007, an Artist of the Year award at the MTV Africa Music Awards 2009, a Best International Act Africa award at the 2011 BET Awards and a Best-selling African Artist award at the 2014 World Music Award.
Dbanj has been embroiled in a lot of controversies and rumors about his love life. He has been linked in the past with female celebrities like Genevieve Nnaji and Nadia Buari. He founded the Koko Foundation for Youth and Peace Development.
Most recently however, it emerged that the kokomaster is off the market as he had tied the knot with a certain Didi Kilgrow born to an American father and a part Nigerian, part South African mother.